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State v. Michels Pipeline Construction, Inc.

Supreme Court of Wisconsin
217 N.W.2d 339 (Wis. 1974)


In 1972, Metropolitan Sewerage Commission of Milwaukee County (defendant) granted Michels Pipeline Construction, Inc. (Michels) (defendant) an easement to construct a sewerage in Greenfield, Wisconsin. In September 1972, Michels began pumping water from Greenfield wells, causing the ground water table to lower considerably. As a result, nearby residents who drew the same water from private wells experienced the drying of their wells and subsidence of the soil near their homes. Michels demurred on the grounds that Huber v. Merkel, 117 Wis. 355 (1903) ruled that a cause of action does not accrue for interference with ground water. The trial court sustained Michel’s demurrer.

Rule of Law


Holding and Reasoning (Wilkie, J.)

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