How to Misdraft an Easement Agreement: Error Six

Last year I wrote a book on how to draft easement agreements, giving practical advice to lawyers. I had the most fun with the next-to-last chapter, which I called “Ten Ways to Misdraft Your Easement Agreement,” where I described ten ways for drafters to mess up their agreements. The sixth error I wrote about is to not set standards for roads and utilities. If you are granting an easement to allow your neighbor to build a driveway and connect utilities through your property, describe how much driveway you’re allowing. Even if the easement area will be 30 feet wide, you may not expect your neighbor to build a driveway that looks like a public street, with curbs and a sidewalk. You can and should say something like “Within the Easement Area, Grantee may construct a paved driveway up to X feet wide” so that you’re allowing a driveway, not a highway.