Now Accepting New Clients!

REAL ESTATE 12: Plaintiff sought to limit the rights of non-riparian lot owners.

Plaintiff sought to limit the rights of non-riparian lot owners to maintain a dock at the end of a dedicated private road abutting a lake.

A riparian owner has the right to build and maintain a dock at the edge of the water. The reservation of a right of way for access to a body of water does not give rise to riparian rights, but a riparian property owner may grant an easement to backlot owners to enjoy certain rights that are traditionally regarded as exclusively riparian.

Here, the plattors of the Subdivision dedicated the streets as shown on said plat to the use of The public excepting those indicated as ‘Private’ which are dedicated to the use of The Lot Owners. At issue in this case is a street between lots 31 and 32 that ends at the lake and that was designated as private on the plat map.

Plaintiff argues that the trial court erred in finding that defendants were riparian landowners, but the trial court made no such finding; it determined that defendants had access to the road and could maintain a dock based on cases that involved rights incident to a dedication of platted property. Essentially, the court concluded that the plattors of the Subdivision reserved a private way of access to the lake for the lot owners of the subdivision.

Generally, roads that are dedicated for public use and terminate at the shore of navigable waters are presumed to have been intended to provide public access to the water. A road dedicated to private use that terminates at the edge of a lake should be presumed to have been intended to provide access to the lake.

Individuals who gain access to a navigable waterbody have a right to use the surface of the water in a reasonable manner for such activities as boating, fishing and swimming, as well as the right to temporarily anchor boats.  The right to build a dock at the end of an access road is derived from the plattor’s intent to provide access to the water, because building the dock aids in the access. Thus, plaintiff cannot prevent defendants from erecting a dock where the dock is within the scope of the plat’s dedication and does not unreasonably interfere with plaintiff’s use and enjoyment of property.

The testimony of residents of the subdivision that the area had historically been used to access the water, and included a dock, accords with a finding that the area was intended to be used for access to the water and that a dock was to be included.

The trial court found that the lot owners may moor boats temporarily to the dock, but this does not mean that boats may be moored overnight. It denied plaintiff’s request that the dock be removed.

Are you involved in a real estate dispute in Michigan? If you are facing a residential real estate matter, seek the advice of an experienced and skilled real estate litigation attorney at Aldrich Legal Services in Plymouth. Our attorneys have litigated literally thousands of cases. Our founding attorney, Brad Aldrich, is a knowledgeable real estate lawyer and skilled trial lawyer with more than 19 years of legal experience.

Contact Aldrich Legal Services

FSBO: 3 Tips to Help Effectively Sell Your Home

Many homeowners are taking real estate matters into their own hands, especially when it comes to their own homes. Some of the most difficult tasks FSBO sellers encounter are selling their home at the right price, understanding paperwork and selling...

How Is Debt Split Up In A Divorce?

For some, debt is inevitable. Many individuals have some form of debt whether it’s credit card debt or student loans. You and your spouse may have accumulated debt over the years and this raises a huge question. How is debt split up in a...

What Are Some Post Legal Divorce Issues?

Once a divorce is finalized, there still may be a few legal issues that can happen after the divorce proceeding. It’s even possible that new issues can arise after the divorce. In either event, a divorce lawyer can help guide you through these...

For Sale by Owner: Do You Need an Attorney?

  For sale by owner (FSBO) homes can be a daunting task. However, if you want to do it correctly and smoothly, it’s best done with some assistance from a real estate lawyer. A real estate attorney has the knowledge and experience to...

Michigan Marijuana Statutes

In the state of Michigan, the possession of marijuana is illegal unless you have a medical condition that is debilitating. Below we discuss the marijuana statutes in Michigan. Medical Marijuana The Michigan Medical Marijuana Act states that...

The Most Common Reasons for Real Estate Litigation

Real estate litigation can happen to anyone, from buyers and sellers to real estate agents, there’s always a potential for a lawsuit. With a lot of money on the line, it’s crucial to have an experienced attorney who has a great...

Refusing A Blood Alcohol Test in Michigan

In the state of Michigan, the law requires you to take either a blood, breath or urine test if arrested for an OWI. Michigan has an “implied consent” law which states that if someone lawfully arrested by an officer who has probable cause...

Do Background Checks Show Misdemeanors?

  Misdemeanors are often considered a less serious criminal offense compared to their felony counterpart. Common misdemeanors include reckless driving, petty theft, public intoxication, trespassing and more. Although misdemeanors don’t...

Don't let a bad decision, unfair contract, or a messy divorce get in the way of a promising future!
Contact the experienced team at Aldrich Legal Services today to schedule your free initial
and secure reliable and trustworthy representation today!
Get the Help You Need From a Team You Can Truly Count On: (734) 404-3000