Partition: a Litigation Tool to Solve Co-Ownership Problems

Imagine having the good fortune to own a piece of Humboldt County real property, but being stuck with a co-owner (other than a spouse) so difficult that owning the property becomes more of a liability than an asset. Unfortunately, this is a somewhat common occurrence. For example, two people in a romantic relationship but remaining unmarried might purchase a home … Read More

Civil Code Section 813 – Protect Your Real Property!

California Civil Code section 813(link is external) provides a simple means for landowners to protect themselves from someone asserting prescriptive rights or adverse possession. It states, in relevant part: “The holder of record title to land may record in the office of the recorder of any county in which any part of the land is situated, a description of said land … Read More

Another Reason to Pay Your Property Taxes On Time

A claim or defense that is frequently raised in litigation involving easements is that an easement either was created or terminated (“extinguished” is the term most often used by the courts) because a party adversely possessed that easement. Code of Civil Procedure section 325 specifies the requirements for proving adverse possession: a hostile claim of right made continuously for a … Read More

Successful Trial Results in Mendocino County Easement Case

Toward the end of 2017 Janssen Malloy LLP attorney David Nims represented a longtime client of the firm in Mendocino County Superior Court in a civil case. Recently, Judge Jeanine Nadel issued the decision of the court in favor of the client, the owner of a significant amount of timberland in Humboldt and Mendocino Counties. The case was brought by a … Read More

Timber Trespass

Last week I wrote about trespassing neighbors, whose activities, structures, commercial activity, or personal property encroach onto your property. This week I am covering what happens when a neighbor – either negligently or intentionally – crosses onto another landowner’s property and cuts down a tree or trees. California, like many other states, see this as a particularly offensive civil wrong, … Read More

The Trespassing Neighbor: An All-Too-Common Issue Among Rural Landowners

As a real property attorney, I receive numerous calls from owners of property in Humboldt, Mendocino, Del Norte, and Trinity Counties about neighbors who are trespassing or encroaching on their property, wondering what they can or should do about it, especially if cannabis is involved. The first thing a landowner should know is that “self help,” such as tearing down a … Read More

Prescription Against A Public Entity: You Just Can’t Do It.

Janssen Malloy LLP represents clients involved in real property disputes. These disputes generally involve private landholders who are claiming rights in each other’s respective properties. But what happens when the litigant who a prescriptive easement is claimed against is a public entity?  The short answer is it is impossible to claim a prescriptive easement over the lands of a public … Read More

Lessons in Equitable Easements

What is an equitable easement? An equitable easement is a judicially created doctrine that authorizes a trespasser to continue his or her trespass on another’s property in exchange for paying damages, where the hardship on the trespasser in ceasing the trespass is “greatly disproportionate” to the hardship on the land’s owner in losing use of the trespassed upon portion of … Read More