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Cookeville, TN

1 edit
reply to marcusa007

Re: At&t ran cable through my yard without having an easement

At my place I'd check with the city attorney first and verify that there is indeed no easement in place.

Many times home owners are not advised of one that was put in by the original property developer.

Then if no easement is in place I would send AT&T a registered letter to the legal address of record that the city attorney has for them advising they have X number of days to remove the cable from your property after which time it will be removed for them. Don't let the city attorney's office snow you, they have to have an address of record for all companies doing business in the city, legally that is...

In the registered letter specify the facts, that it is illegally on your property, and the exact date/time the cable will be removed (cut) if AT&T does not remover it prior to that date/time.

I'd forward a copy of the letter to the house where the cable is presently terminated to stop them from calling the police or some other foolishness when their cable quits.

I hope you use don't use AT&T for anything at your house...


Click for full size
So after reading your post I pulled my survey. It shows that part of the 5' utility easement reaches into my property by about 2 feet. Theoretically that would give them the right to access the property from their but does that give them the right to run a cable all the way through my yard. Especially if the same thing can be accomplished without getting into my yard. From the first picture you can see the pole and box are located in the drive way of a house that has no gate. You can walk right up to it. Also if they do have the right to temporary run the wire across, do they have the right to bury the wire in my yard all the way across?


Woodland Hills, CA
reply to BlueMist
The most likely scenario is that the permanent buried drop is defective and this is temp service until the other one is dug up and repaired. It's done all the time but not usually cutting across yards like that.


Cookeville, TN
reply to marcusa007
From what I have read here it appears that AT&T does have the right to run the cable inside your yard as long as they stay with in the easement.

The cable should have continued down the easement until it reached the property line of the house they wanted to terminate it at and then crossed that yard and into the house.

Unless you are at odds with the neighbor who is being supported by this cable you might want to ask them what they were told about the cable. It might indeed be a temporary fix until a new cable is properly buried. In our area similar situations have occurred during the winter months which later on were forgotten about by the company responsible for later burying the cable. Usually a letter to the editor of the local newspaper embarrasses them enough to get the problem fixed if they try to play phone tag.

In my area the utility companies have the right to remove any fences installed on easements they use during repair or maintenance actions, like replacing buried cables or to cut down trees that are on the easement which are interfering with overhead cables. It is up to the home owner(s) to later pay someone else to repair or replace the fence.

Either way it appears that the technician was at fault by not following the easement all the way to the problem house but then again many times they are not told of it's exact size or location, just to get the problem fixed.

If you can not get proper answers from them by phone you might consider consulting a local attorney and have them write the registered letter advising AT&T of the problem, and requesting when the "temporary" cable will be removed and a permanent solution installed while still remaining with in their easement and not where the temporary cable is currently located.


Thanks for coming back on and shedding more light on this. The issue is that I don't want more of my yard to become an easement because I kept quite about it. I also can't stand that neighbor due to the fact that he keeps has dog chained up in 100 plus degree weather without ever seeing if he is ok. I have nothing that I want to say to the man. He is scum for treating an animal like that. The only reason I have not called animal control is that if they take the dog he surely will be put down. He is a pitbull and almost no chance to be adopted. I hate that choice Maybe that is why the installer chose my yard instead. Maybe he was scared of the dog. LOL

call att repair and tell them that they have 12 hrs to move the wire back into the easement or you will remove it for them. Anything outside the easement is on private property and they need your permission to place it there. Be polite but firm on your timetable for removal.


Huntsville, AL
·WOW Internet and..
reply to marcusa007
The easement appears to be the entire 5 feet on both sides of the property line. Note the 10.0' dimension line (arrows) just above the word "UTILITY".

Not withstanding that interpretation issue, I hope they have fixed the problem by now. It was inappropriate routing, in any case.

With trees, you generally have the right to go straight up the property line and cut off overhanging limbs. (The city and the utilities do it over the easement to protect power lines, especially in snow, hurricane, and tornado prone states.) In this case it would seem that anything beyond the easement is at risk.