Galiher v. Johnson
Wyoming Supreme Court
432 P.3d 502 (2018)
Dennis and Vicki Johnson (defendants) purchased lot 21 in 1977. In 1986, the Johnsons began using and maintaining a portion of an adjacent lot, lot 23, for parking and storage. In 2013, Louise Galiher purchased lot 23. Subsequently, Galiher commissioned a survey of her property boundaries, which revealed that at least some portion of the area that the Johnsons used for parking and storage was on Galiher’s lot 23. The Johnsons learned of the survey results from a municipal official, so they telephoned Galiher. On the call, Dennis informed Galiher that prior owners had given him permission to use the corner of lot 23 and asked for permission to continue use of the corner. Galiher denied his request, but she granted Dennis 48 hours to remove his property from lot 23. Later, Dennis called Galiher again and told her that he was not going to remove his property from lot 23 because he had a right to be there. Galiher brought a quiet-title action in the district court against the Johnsons, arguing that any adverse-possession claim failed because Dennis previously had permission to use the corner of lot 23. The Johnsons filed an adverse-possession counterclaim. The district court entered judgment for the Johnsons, finding that they had proved adverse possession, so title to the corner of lot 23 vested in them. Galiher appealed. The district court’s judgment was reversed and remanded because it had not properly considered some of the evidence presented at trial. On remand, the district court found that the assertion made by Dennis that he had permission to use lot 23 was false and made simply to avoid liability for trespassing, so the district court once again ordered that title to the corner of lot 23 vested in the Johnsons. Galiher appealed again.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Kautz, J.)
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