Brad Bernstein, a principal and litigator in Miles & Stockbridge’s Rockville office, successfully defended against a claim asserting a prescriptive easement over his client’s property in the Circuit Court for Montgomery County. Mr. Bernstein represented Country Realty Co. and Euro Motorcars Collision Center. Country Realty Co. purchased the property in question from a subsidiary of The Washington Post in 2017. The property had previously been used as the newspaper facility and offices for the Gazette Newspapers. The primary tenant, Euro Motorcars. had converted the property into a collision center.
The plaintiff, a neighboring carpet distributor, claimed that they had been using the property for several different purposes for over 20 years and, thus, had an easement to utilize said property. In particular, the neighboring business alleged to have received several deliveries during the week and large delivery trucks would allegedly use the property to turn around and back up to the carpet distributor’s warehouse bays. The plaintiff also claimed to have regularly used the property to exit onto the main road and utilized a loading dock that was partly on the property.
Mr. Bernstein argued that the client was a bona fide purchaser without actual or constructive notice of the easement, and the circuit court agreed, providing Mr. Bernstein and the client with a full trial victory.