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Strahin v. Lantz

Supreme Court of Appeals of West Virginia
456 S.E.2d 12 (1995)


Vonda Lantz (defendant) owned a large piece of property adjacent to a county road. In the early 1900s, when a local mine was active, people crossed over Lantz’s property using Miner Road to access the county road from their nearby homes. A prescriptive easement was created across Miner Road. When the coal mine closed and mine workers moved away, Lantz installed a gate across Miner Road. However, owners of adjacent property occasionally passed through the gate to access their properties. James Strahin (plaintiff) purchased a piece of property adjacent to Lantz’s and planned to construct a home there. Lantz locked the gate to prevent Strahin from having access to Miner Road. Strahin sued to force Lantz to let Strahin use the road. The lower court held that the prescriptive easement had been abandoned. Strahin appealed and argued that abandonment must be shown by evidence of nonuse coupled with evidence of an intent to abandon.

Rule of Law


Holding and Reasoning (Cleckley, J.)

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