Law of Property – Classification of Easements

Classification of Easements:

Easements can be classified as

  1. Continuous and Discontinuous easements
  2. Apparent and Non-apparent easements
  3. Affirmative and Negative easements.
  4. Permanent and Limited easements


  1. Continuous and Discontinuous easements

A Continuous easement is easements whose enjoyment can be continued without the act of a man whereas discontinuous easements are that which requires an act of man for its enjoyment. As for instance, a right of light to person’s house through its windows without obstruction by his neighbour is a continuous easement and a right of way to the house of a person over his neighbour’s land is a discontinuous easement.


  1. Apparent and Non-apparent easements

An easement is said to be apparent when it is visible upon careful inspection by a competent person as shown by some permanent signs; while a non- apparent easement is one, which has no such sign. E.g. an easement of light and air.


  1. Affirmative and Negative easements.

Easements are also classified as affirmative and negative, according as the dominant owner is entitled to do something on the servient tenement or he is given only the right to prevent something being done on the servient tenement. Eg of positive easement the right of way. Eg. of negative easement right of light or air.


  1. Permanent and Limited easements

Apart from the above three -fold classification there is a fourth classification found in English Law as permanent and limited easement. Easements are said to be permanent when the dominant owner is entitled to enjoy them for all time and under all circumstances without any condition attached to their exercise. But on the other hand, if the exercise of the easement is limited to a certain place time, or purpose, then, the easement is called a limited easement. The easement may be subject to condition which may be either a condition precedent or a condition subsequent.


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