Maintenance Easements

A stormwater maintenance easement is a legal contract that conveys the right to use the property of another for the access and maintenance of a Stormwater Treatment Practice (STP). The easement is a real property interest recorded in the land deed, but legal title to the underlying land is retained by the property owner for all other purposes. Maintenance easements allow access to a "land-locked" piece of property, and may be specifically described by a physical boundary or by a purpose (sometimes called a "floating easement"). Governments, municipalities and public utilities use easements to establish access, restrictions and rights to property and an easement may be used when the landowners' rights require clarification and formal agreements are necessary between public and private parties.

Stormwater management easements are typically worded to permit access to a facility for life. Easement area access is often specific for maintenance by a local municipal agency and does not convey access to the general public. The easement agreement usually prohibits the modification of the easement area by the property owner to avoid interference with access, and in some cases the property owner may grant the right to remove vegetation as necessary to maintain the use of the easement.

Samples of easements are provided below. Documents in .pdf format require the Adobe Acrobat reader, which you can download for free here.