Brtek v. Cihal
Nebraska Supreme Court
515 N.W.2d 628 (1994)
Agnes Brtek and her children, Joe, Jerry (plaintiff), and Martha (defendant) bought a farm. At the direction of Agnes, Joe took title to the farm. Subsequently, Joe, again at the direction of Agnes, deeded the farm to himself and Martha as joint tenants. Agnes and Joe did not give the deed to Martha and did not record the deed. Rather, Agnes kept the deed in her dresser drawer with other family documents. After Joe died, Agnes presented the deed to Martha, who had since moved out of the farm and married Lad Cihal (defendant). Agnes told Martha at that point that the farm was hers. The following year, Martha deeded the farm to herself and Lad as joint tenants. After Agnes’s death several years later, Martha demanded that Jerry vacate the farm where he had continued to live. Jerry sued Martha and Lad, seeking cancellation of the deed from Joe to Joe and Martha. Testimony indicated that Agnes intended the farm to pass to Martha only after Joe’s death. The district court held that Martha and Lad held title to the farm. Jerry appealed.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Hastings, C.J.)
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