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Bransford v. International Paper Timberlands Operating Company, Ltd.
Louisiana Court of Appeal
750 So. 2d 424 (2000)
Camille Bransford (plaintiff) owned a tract of land that was adjacent to a tract owned by International Paper Timberlands Operating Company (International Paper) (defendant). Surface water flowed from Bransford’s land onto International Paper’s land. Beavers became active on both tracts of land and built dams that caused flooding. Bransford destroyed dams that were built on her property but found that a dam had been built on International Paper’s land that was blocking the drainage of water from her land and causing flooding. Bransford sued International Paper for damages, claiming that the company’s failure to remove the beaver dams caused flooding on her property and the loss of timber. International Paper filed a motion for summary judgment, conceding that the beaver dams on its land had obstructed the natural drainage of water from Bransford’s land but arguing that it was under no obligation to remove naturally occurring obstacles to drainage. The trial court found that International Paper had no affirmative duty to remedy naturally occurring blockages and granted the motion for summary judgment. Bransford appealed.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Williams, J.)
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