Adverse Possession of Disused Laneways
by Sarah Lindsey
IF YOU occupy a strip of land at the rear of your property that is not on your title you may have adversely possessed a disused laneway. You could perfect your title by becoming the registered proprietor, subject to satisfying all the usual relevant requirements of an adverse possession application.
Although a person cannot adversely possess land owned by a Council, laneways are not often owned by Council. They usually remain registered in the ownership of the original developer who subdivided the land in the early 20th century. However, Council may initiate a discontinuance process to get the title vested in Council so that they can then offer this land for purchase; this process may take at least twelve months to complete.
You should investigate the option of bringing an application, including lodging a caveat to notify the Reg-istrar of your possession of this land; you would be therefore notified of any Council action.
Hicks Oakley Chessell Williams