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Property II
University of Georgia School of Law
Turner, Christian

 
ADVERSE POSSESSION IN CHATTELS
 
1.      Two Different Rules
a.       Adverse Possession DOES NOT APPLY TO CHATTELS
                                                        i.            We must focus on owner's conduct with chattels, not possessors
b.      New Jersey Discovery Rule
                                                        i.            SoL starts running from when the true owner discovers or should have discovered where the chattels are, through due diligence
                                                      ii.            So long as owner acting with due diligence, the clock on SoL does not start until owner gets the information they need
c.       New York Demand Rule
                                                        i.            SoL starts when chattels are found and return is demanded, and that demand is rejected
                                                      ii.            Due Diligence must be shown by true owner
                                                    iii.            BEST RULE FOR OWNERS
d.      Tacking
                                                        i.            Possessors can add their time of possession together as long as they all satisfied the elements and have privity relationship
                                                      ii.            Protects innocent purchasers
2.      Cases
a.       O'Keefe v Snyder
                                                        i.            Okeefe had painting stolen, found out decades later where it was, tried to sue. But her actions since the painting were gone seemed like reluctant acceptance of the theft (never called police or told husband etc)
 
Encroachments
1.      When a neighbor encroaches onto the land of another, through construction
2.      Two Rules
a.       Blackstonian-style “Tear down this wall!” – Pile v Pedrick
                                                        i.            People have absolute right to their property, if anyone encroaches, it is their problem and they have to get off your land
                                                      ii.            Even if encroacher was in good faith, offers to chip away or make party wall or any other ideas, doesn’t matter. If owner wishes encroachment gone, they must tear down at their own expense
                                                    iii.            Rationale
1.      People who caused harm should bear the harm
2.      Put burden on person who had the best chance to avoid it 'cost-avoider'
3.      Judges may not be able to make correct distinction between good and bad faith every time
 
2. Relative Hardship Doctrine (Golden Press v Rylands)
a.       Elements
                                                                          i.            Removal would be expensive
                                                                        ii.            Insubstantial interference with true owner's land
                                                                      iii.            Good faith/innocent mistake
b.      Then Encroacher can pay damages to Owner and keep the improvements
c.        
Property Rule(O can tear down)
Liability Rule (E can stop with damages)
Removal is cheap
Removal expensive
Or interference w/rights is substantial
Interference insubstantial
Or bad faith
Good faith / Innocent mistake
 
 
3.      Cases
a.      Pile v Pedrick
                                                        i.            Factory builds wall, accidentally builds 1 3/8 inches of the wall on the neighbor's property. Neighbor's force them to remove wall
b.      Golden Press Inc v Rylands
                                                        i.            Golden Press built a building, encroaching by inches onto Rylands land, and destroyed flower bed, disturbed Rylands property, etc
                                                       ii.            HERE, the expense and hardship of such removal would be so great in comparison with any advantage of plaintiffs to be gained thereby that we think it would be unconscionable to require it
 
Improving Trespassers
1.      Someone who ACCIDENTALLY builds entirely on the land of another
2.      Where land is 1) specifically for business purpose, 2) is not adapted for specific or long standing use, and
3.      3) is fungible, then Somerville may apply. FAMILY FARM WONT FALL UNDER SOMERVILLE
4.      Rule:
a.       Encroacher's investment is protected by liability rule
b.      Owner must pay encroacher damages in order to keep the improvements
c.       Or owner can sell the land to the encroacher. He cannot tear it down.
5.      Cases
a.       Somerville
                                                        i.            Man accidentally built factory on someone else's land. True owner wanted to keep the factory for himself, but not able to do so, nor can he tear down. Must pay Encroacher value of factory or sell the land to the encroacher.
b.      Dissent in Somerville
                                                        i.            Owner has option to tear down, sell land, OR pay for improvements.
 
 
Granting Lands
Interpretation of Grants
1.      Interpreting a Grant:
a.       Wood v Board of County Commissioners
                                      i.            Every conveyance of real estate shall pass all the estate of the grantor unless the intent

re interest is valid only if it must vest or fail to vest within 21 years of the death of a life in being at the time of the grant
a.       Grant must be written so that all contingencies are necessarily resolved shortly after people around now die
 
DOES NOT APPLY:
DOES APPLY
Future interests in grantor (possibility of reverter and right of entry)
Executory Interests
Vested remainders (absolute remainder, remainders subject to divestment)
Contingent remainders
Charity exception: If condition that divests from one charity and gives to another charity
Vested Remainder subject to Open
Options and rights of first refusal
Options and rights of first refusal
 
6.       How to Work Through RAP Problems
a.       Name the grant and the interests in grant. Does RAP apply?
b.      Apply the RAP
                                    a.            Counter example: Tell a story where contingency remains 21 years after all relevant people are dead
                                    b.            OR Proof: Prove that the contingency will be resolved within life +21 of someone around at the time of the grant
c.       Redact grant as necessary
                                    a.            Start at end of grant, and draw line through grant until it leaves a valid grant
                                    b.            To A so long as illegal drugs are not used on the premises, and if drugs are used on the premises, then to B
                                                        i.            To A so long as illegal drugs are not used on the premises (fee subject determinable with reverter in O
                                    c.            To A, but if illegal drugs are ever used on the premises, then to B
                                                        i.            To A (fee simple absolute)
 
Restraints on Marriage
7.      Restraints on Marriage are alright if reasonable, Unreasonable restraints are against public policy
8.      Shapira: Example of Reasonable Restraint
a.       Freedom of religion is strong public pol, but here condition is not on Daniel’s practice, only to marry someone of a particular faith