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McDonald v. Harris

Alaska Supreme Court
978 P.2d 81 (1999)


A gravel-pit owner conveyed land to David and Sylvia Harris (defendants) in exchange for construction work. The Harrises built a driveway in 1983 and used it continuously year-round to access a home completed in 1985. The Harrises’ construction workers also occasionally used the driveway to access the gravel pit, but not the public. When Denise McDonald (plaintiff) bought the neighboring parcel in 1986, she relied on a rough, inaccurate sketch to determine its boundaries. Nine-and-a-half years later, when a site survey revealed that the Harrises’ driveway encroached on McDonald’s property, McDonald blocked the driveway. The Harrises sued for a prescriptive easement to use the driveway. The trial court found that the Harrises met the required elements for the statutory period of ten years and granted the easement to the Harrises. McDonald appealed.

Rule of Law


Holding and Reasoning (Fabe, J.)

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