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Flashcards in Adverse Possession Deck (18)
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What is adverse possession?

When an owner does not, within the statutory period, take action to eject a possessor who claims adversely to the owner, title to the property vests in the possessor.


How do you establish title by adverse possession?

1. actual entry through exclusive possession; 2. open and notorious; 3. hostile; and 4. continuous through the statutory period


When does the SOL begin to run?

When the true owner can first bring suit (filing a suit will not stop a period from running)


What constitutes actual and exclusive possession?

if an adverse possessor actually occupies a reasonable portion of the parcel, and her occupation is under color of title (doc that purports to give title but does not actually do so) to the entire parcel, she constructively possesses the entire parcel;

exclusive - not sharing with true owner or public


Can two or more people obtain title by adverse possession?

Yes - they will be tenants in common


What constitutes open and notorious?

When its the kind of use the owner would make of the land; this use must be sufficiently to put the true owner on notice that a trespass is occurring


What constitutes hostile?

when the possessor enters without the owner's permission


To satisfy hostility, does the possessor's state of mind matter?

No - it does not matter whether she believes the land to be her own or she knows she is trespassing


When can one co-T's possession become adverse to another?

the co-T must oust the others or make an explicit declaration that he is claiming exclusive dominion to create adv. possession.


What happens when a grantor stays in possession after conveyance?

presume to be there with permission of the grantee (same if T stays after expiration of lease -- presume LL gave permission)


What does it mean for a possessor to enter under claim of right?

when the possessor reasonably believes that the property belongs to them (usually because they have an invalid deed); invalid deed given by owner is not permission to use the land (possession is still hostile bc of the invalid deed)


What constitutes continuous possession?

must be cont. throughout the statutory period; intermittent periods are not sufficient, but constant use is not required so long as possession is of a type that the usual owner would make


Does there need to be continuous possession by the same person?

No, adverse possessor can tack her own possession onto the periods of adverse possession of her predecessors, but you NEED privity


Are adverse possessors required to pay taxes?

No, but this is evidence of claim of right


Does the SOL begin to run if true owner was under some disability to sue?

No, so long as the owner was suffering this disability when the COA first accrued


Does the SOL run against a holder of a FI?

No, not until the interest becomes possessory. The SOL does not run until the right is asserted by the grantor (grantor's right of entry upon condition)


What happens when an adverse possessor uses land in violation of a restrictive covenant?

She takes it free of that restriction; but if she complies with it, takes titles subject to the covenant


Can title to government-owned land be acquired through adverse possession?