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Millbrook Hunt, Inc. v. Smith

Supreme Court of New York, Appellate Division
670 N.Y.S.2d 907 (1998)


Facts

Edgar O. Smith (defendant) owned a 285-acre tract of land. Smith’s predecessor in interest entered a "Lease and Easement Agreement" with Millbrook Hunt, Inc. (Hunt) (plaintiff), an organization that promoted the preservation and perpetuation of traditional fox hunting. The agreement granted Hunt the right to use the land for fox hunting for a term of 75 years. It also allowed the owner of the land the absolute right to develop the land and redirect the hunting paths. Upon acquiring the property, Smith, who objected to fox hunting, ejected members of Hunt from performing maintenance on the fox-hunting trails. Hunt brought suit seeking a declaration that it possessed an easement over Smith’s property and an injunction preventing Smith from interfering with Hunt’s use of the easement. Smith moved for summary judgment, arguing that Hunt possessed a revocable license rather than an easement. Hunt cross-moved to dismiss Smith's affirmative defenses and counterclaims. The trial court denied Smith's motion and granted Hunt's cross-motion, and Smith appealed from the trial court's order and interlocutory judgment.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Per curiam)

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