Easements to subsist
Section 146 of the LAA provides that an easement granted under the LAA will continue to have effect in respect to the affected land regardless of any change in the estate or interest in that land. This means the easement continues with the land even though the land may undergo tenure changes, including transfer to freehold.
Easements that are granted in the freehold estate may carry forward even when transferring into the Crown estate. This will be subject to the prior written approval of the Minister for Lands, which may require the meeting of additional conditions or the surrender and replacement of the easement if the State is not satisfied with the easement conditions.
Removal of easements
Easements may be cancelled if not used in accordance with the conditions of the easement. Easements can also be cancelled if they no longer serve any purpose in accordance with sections 144(2), 145 and 150 of the LAA.
Easements may be surrendered by agreement of the parties.
Role of the Department
The Land Use Management Division of the Department is responsible for the granting and administration of easements over Crown land under part 8 of the LAA under delegation from the Minister for Lands, and for acquiring easements under part 9 of the LAA, as well as pursuant to section 16 of the PPA.
The fee for LAA easements is determined in consultation with the Valuer-General and may be payable annually, or a once off fee is set to cover administrative costs in agreed circumstances. Upon receipt of a request, an investigation will be undertaken. This involves seeking relevant approvals, consents and comments from interest holders and other relevant parties. There may be a requirement for the applicant to undertake a future act process or to negotiate an Indigenous Land Use Agreement (ILUA) under the Native Title Act 1993 (NTA) to address native title rights and interests. The applicant will be responsible for all costs associated with obtaining these consents or as a result of undertaking a future act or negotiating an ILUA.
Following actions to prepare a Deposited Plan, if necessary, LUM negotiates easement conditions as appropriate, prepares the easement document for execution and lodges it with Landgate for registration against the relevant title where LUM may then seek payment of any meeting costs, statutory fees and the easement registration fee.
Making an application for an easement on Crown land
To make an application for an easement, the applicant should complete a Crown Land Enquiry Form (CLEF), available from the Department’s website and submit to firstname.lastname@example.org. The CLEF will assist in ensuring enough information is provided to facilitate an investigation by the Land Use Management Division. Alternatively, a written proposal should be sent to;
Department of Planning, Lands and Heritage
Locked Bag 2506
Perth WA 6001
An application will need to contain information detailing the requirement for the easement and the land to be affected. Plans and relevant search information should be provided where possible. If Crown land is subject to an existing interest such as a lease, the consent of that interest holder will be required.