Easement And Land Administration Right Of Way (Larow): Another Way Of Enjoying Your Land

Have you ever been in a position where you want to buy land which does not have free access to the main road or any of your inherited land facing the said issue? Or it is your land that needs to be accessed by the other neighbouring landowner(s)?

Over the years, perhaps the lack of knowledge and enforcement, our ancestors might normalize the ‘give and take’ in this kind of situation.   However, things might change when the land is inherited or sold to any other person which may claim to exercise their right and privilege by not letting you to bypass or walk through their land in order to access to yours.  Hence, what choices you may have when you are landlocked?

1.              Easement

The first option is to have a formalized proposal with the other landowner(s)(servient land) and to have it endorsed in the land office. This option is known as “easement”; any right granted by one proprietor to another, in his capacity as such and for the beneficial enjoyment of his land in accordance with following provisions of the Chapter in the National Land Code (“NLC”). [1]  To enforce the easement, you must present and register Form 17A[2] of the NLC, but obviously with the approval and voluntary consent from the servient landowner(s).  You may need to put a monetary or non-monetarily offer to the said landowner(s) or you may get lucky enough to have your request free of charge.  Also, the easement may be enforceable for a specific of time or perpetuity and may also be terminated and cancelled[3].  Some may ask, it is necessary to apply and register the said easement? The answer is yes, in Malaysia, an easement can only be in the form of an express grant and not by presumption.

2.              Land Administration Right of Way (LAROW)

This option might be your other alternative if the servient landowner(s) refuse(s) and do(es) not agree to grant an easement to you.  Land Administrator(s) is the one of the State Officers appointed by the State Authority under Section 12 of the NLC which shall also include the Assistant Land Administrator(s) in every District Land Office; known as District Officer (“DO”) /Assistant District Officer (“ADO”), who is having the jurisdiction in the specific district or subdistrict in which the land is situated. The Land Administrator Right of Way (LAROW) is a power conferred by the NLC to the Land Administrator to create rights of way overland[4] , and it can be a private or public right of way.[5]

Public right of way is a right given to any member of the public to use a particular route to get to a public terminal.[6]  The public terminal under LAROW is referring to the foreshore, river, railway station or public road[7].  Meanwhile, the private right of way is created for the benefit of the occupier or proprietor of an alienated land to pass and re-pass a public terminal.  Nevertheless, both rights of way may be subjected to certain conditions imposed by the Land Administrator.

For you to apply the private right of way, you may submit your application through Form 28A of the NLC and the process shall further be conducted by the Land Administrator.  You may need to bear any incidental cost relating to the application (i.e surveying, maintenance, construction or repairing cost).  Once LAROW is created, the grant shall be binding to the proprietors, occupiers and the inheritor of the land.

Tips for you, always be prepared and make sure to have everything documented.  Be good and know your neighbouring or the other landowner(s).  Also, take every possible precaution step to secure your enjoyment over your own land/property.


Prepared by,

Nur Hafizah Binti Abdullah

Legal Associate

[1] Section 282(1) of the National Land Code
[2] Section 286 of the National Land Code
[3] Chapter 2 Part 17 of the National Land Code
[4] Section 388 of the National Land Code
[5] Section 389 of the National Land Code
[6] Lye Thean Soo  Syarikat Warsaw [1990] 2CLJ 743
[7] Section 387 of the National Land Code


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