UCLA law professor Stephen Bainbridge blogs about applying to remodel his Los Angeles home and being informed by the bureaucracy that, on paper, his house doesn't exist. Nor does his street. He was told it will take at least a year to go through the process leading to a hearing on whether or not his home is legal.
I was speechless until it occurred to me to ask why, if our house doesn't exist, we have to pay property taxes and so on. The answer? "That's another department." Back to being speechless. I then recovered enough to ask what we had to do to have the existence of our house established, which I thought would be a simple process - after all, you can see it on Google Earth. I was told we would first have to have a hearing to determine whether the street that runs in front of our house is a public street or private road.