This section is from the book "The Law Of Real Property and Other Interests In Land", by Herbert Thorn Dike Tiffany. Also available from Amazon: A Treatise on the Modern Law of Real Property and Other Interests in Land .
7. Pendleton v. Alexander, 8 Cranch, 462; Clemmons v. Cox, 116 Ala. 567, 23 So. 79; Arring-ton v. Liscom, 34 Cal. 365; Mickey v. Barton 194 111. 446, 62 N. E. 802; Cramer v. Clow, 81 Iowa, 255, 9 L. R. A. 772, 47 N. W. 59; Proprietors of Jeffries Neck Pasture v. Inhabitants of Ipswich, 153 Mass. 42, 26 N. E. 239; Pence v. Miller, 140 Mich. 205, 103 N. W. 582; Dean v. Goddard, 55 Minn. 290, 56 N. W. 1060; Webster v. City of Lincoln, 56 Neb. 502, 76 N. W. 1076; Nash v. Northwest Land Co. 15 N. Dak. 566, 108 N. W. 792; Hamilton v. Fluornoy, 44 Ore. 97, 74 Pac. 483;
Hatch v. Lusignan, 117 Wis. 428, 94 N. W. 332. Contra, Mccoy v. Johnson, 70 Md. 490, 17 Atl. 387; Contee v. Lyon, 19 D. C. 207; Miller v. Robertson, 35 Can. Sup. Ct. 80.
8. Sharp v. Blankenship, 59 Cal. 288; Bowen v. Preston, 48 Ind. 367; Trim v. Mcpherson, 7 Cold. (Tenn.) 15; Grigsby v. Peak, 57 Tex. 142; Sprecker v. Wakely, 11 Wis. 432. See Campbell v. Holt, 115 U. S. 620, 29 L. Ed. 483.
9. Price v. Lyon, 14 Conn. 291; Tichborne v. Weir, 67 Law Times (N. S.) 735; Coal Creek Consol. Coal Co. v. East Tennessee Iron & Coal Co., 105 Tenn. 563, 59 S. W. 634.
10. Tichborne v. Weir, 67 Law Times (N. S.) 735.
11. Re Nisbett & Potts (1905) 1 Ch. 391, (1906) 1 Ch. 386; Reformed Church v. Schoolcraft, 65 N. Y. 134.
12. Fletcher v. Bivl, Fisher on Mortgages, Appendix.
13. See Banning, Limitationa 84, 85.
Can be enforced against the land in the hands of its new owner as of the old, the statute operating to bar only the person who was entitled to sue on account of the wrongful possession.
- Character of estate. The question of the character of the estate acquired by the wrongful possessor is, in some cases, one of considerable difficulty. The common-law rule was that one who disseised another acquired an estate in fee simple.14 and this regardless of whether he claimed a less estate,15 since "wrong is unlimited and ravens all that can he gotten,"16 and one cannot qualify his own wrong.17 The only case in which one who dispossessed another appears not to have acquired a wrongful fee simple was when there was an existing particular estate, and the dis-possessor claimed merely such particular estate.l8 And in such a case, if the particular estate was of a chattel character, there was no disseisin, but only a dispossession. Apart from this single case of an existing particular estate and a claim by the dispossessor restricted thereto, it appears that the effect of a wrongful dispossession as constituting a disseisin and as so conferring an es tate in fee simple by wrong was, and presumably is,10 absolutely independent of the character of the estate claimed by the dispossessor, or of whether he makes any claim. The statement occasionally made by American judges and writers, that a claim of a fee simple,20 or
14. Litt, Sec. 519; Pollock & Wright, Possession, 94; Watkins, Conveyancing (7th Ed.) 78.
15. See citations, ante Sec. 504, note 65.
16. Hobart 323.
17. Co. Litt. 271a.
18. Co. Litt 271a and Butler's note; 2 Preston, Conveyancing. 321; 2 Preston, Abstracts of Title, 293.
19. See Williams, Seisin, 7, quoted by Professor .1. B. Ames. 3 Harv. Law Rev. at p. 323: Lectures on Leual History, at p. 173; T. Cyprian Williams.esq in 51 Solicitors' Journal, p. 143
20. Ricard v. Williams. 7 Wheat. (U. S.) 59, at p. 107, 5 L. Ed. 221, per Story, J.; Bedell v. Shaw, 59 N. V. 46; Bond v.
O'cara, 177 Mass 139, 83 Am.
2 R. P. - 50 of a freehold,21 estate is necessary to a disseisin is, it is respectfully submitted, without support in the older books.
From what has been said in the preceding paragraph, it appears that the effect of a dispossession, as conferring a wrongful title in fee simple upon the disseisor, is ordinarily independent of whether the person actually dispossessed was a tenant in fee simple or merely a particular tenant, such as a tenant for life or years, the only exception being when the disposses-sor claims merely as against the particular tenant. He has a fee simple title, good as against everybody except the particular tenant whom he has dispossessed and the reversioner or remainderman. After the statute has run against the former, he has a fee simple title good as against everybody except the latter, and if he retains possession for the statutory period after a right of action has accrued to the remainderman or reversioner, his fee simple title becomes valid as against everybody.22 A different view as to the operation of the statute of limitations in such a case has, however, been suggested, that the dispossessor acquires successively, by the running of the statutory period against the successive tenants, an estate equal in quantum to the estate of each tenant,23 that, for instance, if A is tenant for life, with remainder to B for life, with remainder to C in fee simple, and A is wrongfully dispossessed, the wrongful possessor would acquire, by the completion of the statutory period during A's life, an estate for the life of A, by the completion of such period after A's death and during B's life, an estate for the life of B, and by the completion of such period after B's death, an estate in fee simple. The former theory would seem to be preferable from the standpoint of principle, and is certainly more in accord with the common law decisions upon the effect of disseisin.
St. Rep. 265, 58 N. B. 275, per Holmes, C. J.; editorial note 12 Columbia Law Rev. 364.
21. Editorial notes, 5 Columbia Law Rev. 605; 22 Harv. Law Rev. 139.
22. This view is asserted in 1 Hayes, Conveyancing (5th Ed.)
270; Dart, Vendors & Purchasers (6th Ed.) 464; Lightwood, Possession of Land, 275, and is indicated in Tichborne v. Weir, 67 Law Times (N. S.) 735.
23. This view is favored in Rankin v. Mcmurtry, 24 L. R. Ir. 297.
In case one makes, without authority, a lease of another's land, the question whether the lessee will acquire the fee simple title by the lapse of the statutory period, would seem ordinarily to depend on whether the lease was in the name of the true owner. If it was in such owner's name, the lessee's possession is not hostile to such owner, any more than if the lease had been made by the latter, while if it is not in the true owner's name the lessee's possession would ordinarily be hostile to the latter, the case being that, before referred to,24 of adverse possession by a tenant in behalf of his landlord.25 In neither case, it is conceived, should the fact that the possession purported to be under a lease for years have the effect of carving out of the fee simple an estate for years in favor of the possessor.26