Just had a strange conversation with PG&E about an illegal pole on my property

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I just found what appears to be an illegal power pole with telephone lines (yes, a power pole, with telephone lines) on my property that cross the property but do not serve my home.
The title company report shows nothing of the sort.
After a week on the phone (off and on) with PG&E, they just now told me to write a letter stating the 'conflict' (their words, not mine) and what I'd like the resolution to be.
When I asked what are the available 'resolutions' they wouldn't tell me.
Do you have any experience in this area?
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I'd first want to know who owns the pole. Does the power company own it or the telephone company? If it's located on your property, there should be an easement. It's also possible that if it's been there long enough, the owner has a right of way
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An old girlfriend's father had a similar situation where there was no easement, the pole had been there for years, and he still managed to get them to move the line. Unfortunately he's no longer around so I can't ask him how he managed to do it.
R
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On 1/12/2011 7:45 PM, Mel Knight wrote:

Standard disclaimer- IANAL. Having said that- sometimes easements for utility right-of-ways are recorded against the subdivision when it is first platted out, and do not get spelled out in detail on all the individual land deeds, especially when the deed is a 'lot number' deed rather than a complete traditional description. Title company reports are often incomplete, since they are mainly looking for open liens and competing ownership claims and such. Too bad most areas are no longer offering abstracts (and in fact buying up and destroying old abstracts) when property changes hands these days. There is a reason mortgage companies require title insurance, in case something like this crawls out of the woodwork.
You or an expert you hire needs to go down to whatever unit of government (usually the county, but sometimes the township) keeps the property books for your area. If there was an easement, it will be recorded somewhere. Unless you live in an older urban area, odds are you won't have to go back too far. Walk up and down the run of wire, and look for data plates on the poles. In this part of country, they often include a year on them. That will give you a place to start backward from.
Unless the pole is causing you problems and/or there is no recorded easement, what they will probably do is offer you a token sum to sign an easement and waive the right to sue to make them remove the pole. It is possible that some installation crew just dropped a pole there because that is the route they needed to take, and assumed an easement was in place, because the route was on the work order. If there is no easement, you could force them to reroute the line (or try to), but whoever lives at the end of it may then want to get involved, and try to claim an easement by open and notorious usage or something.
So how mad are you? Is it worth hiring lawyers over? And how long has the pole been there?
--
aem sends...



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On Wed, 12 Jan 2011 20:48:42 -0500, aemeijers wrote:

I'm not mad. I just don't want poles and wires crossing my property if I don't have to have it so.
My first inclination is to just tell them to remove it.
My second inclination is to see what they offer (but unless it's on the order of tens of thousands of dollars, I'll default to my first inclination).
I don't know how long the pole and wires have been there. The creosote looks still wet, so I'd say about a year or two (compared to other poles).
I gave the PG&E guys the pole number but there is no date or other identifying information in this part of the country (California) on the poles out here.
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What kind of area is this? What matters is not whether there is a pole (or anything else) on the report. What matters is whether there is an easement on the property. In many residential areas EVERY property has an easement, in which case, they can pretty much put a pole there if they feel like it...
You don't say specifically, but do I gather from your wording that you bought this property recently without noticing the pole?
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On Wed, 12 Jan 2011 20:15:39 -0800, Larry Fishel wrote:

Yes. I bought the property within the year. It's rural. There's not another home within hundreds of yards, and it's all wooded. The pole is near the main street (within the easement of the main road) but the wires cut over my property.
There are other poles, but their wires go along the street, and I assume the main street easement covers the poles. My property goes to the center of each of the streets but the street easements go side to side some thirty feet.
The pole is within the street easements (but I don't know if the street easements allow for poles) but the wires go over my property where there is no easement.
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Maybe he didn't notice the pole going up because he was looking down at his dirt.
R
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if they are phone wires try calling the phone company with pole number
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On Thu, 13 Jan 2011 06:00:12 -0800, snipped-for-privacy@aol.com wrote:

I did. The phone company says they "rent" the poles from the power company. It's the power company I've been talking to for all this time.
I could go back and tell the phone company to remove "their rent" from the pole, I guess.
That's an option. Thanks. I didn't really think of that. Maybe they can put pressure on the power company then to remove their pole.
That's a good idea. That's the kind of ideas I was looking for.
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Mel Knight wrote:

What's it hurting, first?
Second, what did the attorney that handled the property purchase have to say as far as what are the local/state ordinances in effect regarding easements (you _did_ have an attorney, didn't you)?
--
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On 1/13/2011 10:05 AM, dpb wrote:

Not everyplace uses attorneys for property purchases. Around here, the contracts are all take-it-or-leave-it pre-printed boilerplate, so an attorney is pointless. They will NOT make changes. It's a regional thing.
--
aem sends...

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On Thu, 13 Jan 2011 18:42:36 -0500, aemeijers wrote:

In California, it's almost unheard of to have an attorney present when you purchase a home. Dunno why. Just is.
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wrote:

Ameicans have atorneys involved in just about anything else - why not a real estate transaction - quite possibly the largest investment of your life????
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On 1/13/2011 11:07 PM, snipped-for-privacy@snyder.on.ca wrote:

Because in most states, unless it is a private person-to-person sale, you have a Realtor (c) or two involved. They have boilerplate contracts they have to use, or lose their membership or something. And the title transfer houses (which seem to be a bastard cross between a lawyer and a bank) are in on the racket. I showed the paperwork to a lawyer buddy of mine, and he said just go with the flow. Beyond getting their massive cut for a few hours work, they aren't interested in screwing the buyers.
Given that the canned contract is written in stone, a lawyer simply adds no value. Not like a commercial real estate deal, where you are starting with a blank piece of paper, and everything is negotiable. All the realtors use exactly the same forms, and they all act like they were handed down from God.
Now, the house I bought in Louisiana did involve a lawyer, but he didn't do anything more than the title company here in Michigan did. His clerk made up the canned paperwork (at least not a pre-printed form), he signed his name a few times, and made a couple hundred bucks. And in both states, of course, they tacked on all sorts of meaningless junk fees just because they could. I think I ran through half a pad of checks that day, and I'm pretty sure one was for the pizza that was getting delivered as I left.
Next time, I think I'm gonna try paying with a briefcase full of cash. Of course, the feds would be after me within hours if I did that. Or a FSBO sale, with the exchange taking place at a bank.
--
aem sends...


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On 1/13/2011 11:22 PM, aemeijers wrote:

Same for person to person. I bought a property directly from the owner. We had to go to a title company where they use the same standardized forms that everyone must use.

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They may not be interested in screwing the buyer, but in many cases they are working for the SELLER and have interests more closely tied to the SELLER, than the buyer. Principle among those interests is getting paid and that only occurs if the sale is made. So, I would not expect them to be raising legal issues for the buyer. And last time I checked, in most states you have to be licensed as an attorney to give actual legal advice and opinions.

A real estate contract is never writtten in stone. I've made changes to them and so has my attorney. If there is something there you don't like, you change it and send it back. It doesn't get signed until both parties are satisfied.
A good example is the home inspection section. What that says as to the options for the buyer depending on the inspection, is critical. I've made changes to that to protect myself.

I've never seen realtors act that way in my experience. The realtor representing the seller offers them a standard contract, but they or their attorney are free to make any changes they feel appropriate. And as a buyer, the realtor can go crap in their hat. I'm surely not going to leave something in a contract I don't like because the seller's real estate agent says so. Especially in this market. Either negotiate it to something acceptable to me and my lawyer or find another buyer.

Why? Nothing illegal about that.

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On 1/13/2011 11:07 PM, snipped-for-privacy@snyder.on.ca wrote:

Thats one of the problems. Simple things became intentionally way too complicated because of powerful lobbies. Just consider most legislators are lawyers.
It gets really tiring hearing government folks asking "are you a lawyer" as a roadblock when you are researching properties etc at the local courthouse.
Same exact deal with taxes. Get rid of all of the tax forms and accounting procedures, exemptions, credits whatever and replace it with a flat tax based on consumption with exemption for basic stuff such as food much the same way sales taxes are applied.
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That might sound like a good idea to you, but I assure you, if implemented and you saw the tax rate required, you'd have a different opinion. The simple fact is the top 5 percent of income earners are paying a huge portion of the tax burden. And they don't spend anywhere near enough of that income to generate the equivalent revenue using your idea. The result would be a huge shift from a progressive tax system to one that is regressive, putting way more of the burden on those with lower incomes.
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On Jan 16, 7:43am, snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net wrote:

rate would be 23% and everyone would get a kickback to pay basic expenses.
this would get revenue from those living here illegally, encourage saving, elminate tons of government and private sector workers who produce nothing but paper. and easier to enforce the laws. taxes would only be paid for by business.
you paycheck would be totally yours no fed tax, no SS tax everything paid for by sales tax......
far easier to understand
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