I know each state differs in adverse possession laws but reading into Virginia, it sounds very easy to do. All one has to say is they maintained some portion of land for 10 years undisputed and now they can claim they "own" the property.
My mother owns a vacant land and I notice someone is mowing the lawn. One of the claims of adverse possession is that they make the land theirs undisputed ("Planting your flag" so to speak) and they make it known to the supposed owner that they maintain and control the land. However, whoever is mowing the vacant land is doing so in secret and without letting us know it.
From what I understand in most adverse possession case, someone builds a structure or improve a portion of a property as theirs. For example, a farmer might plant crops in a land which is basically something you can't keep hidden and the owner would have more than enough time to dispute it with survey or otherwise. Then there are cases of building a shed or structure or fence over/just before someone's property line and one can make a claim that a part of a property is theirs. However, to claim an entire property, I never really heard of such a case but I don't know the law enough to really know.
I'm just worried that after some time they could come over with some sort of paperwork or something and claim that the land belongs to them because they maintained it for so long. Can anyone explain what sort of ways someone could make an adverse possession claim and just how successful they can be?