Court of Appeals of New York
106 N.E.2d 28 (1952)
The Lutz family (defendant) bought Lots 14 and 15 in Yonkers in 1912. Between then and 1947, they accessed their property by cutting across Lots 19-22 (collectively, Lot 19). Over time, Lutz built a structure and started a gardening business on Lot 19, which he knew that he did not own. In 1947, the Van Valkenburgh family, with whom the Lutzes did not get along, purchased Lots 19-22 and demanded that Lutz remove his structures and garden from Lot 19. Lutz agreed to do so, but claimed that his family should be permitted continuing use of the path through Lot 19 to access his property. He then removed some of the structures from the land. Van Valkenburgh erected a fence blocking the path that Lutz had claimed a right to use. Lutz sued Van Valkenburgh, arguing that while Van Valkenburgh owned the land, he (Lutz) had established a right of way through it. The court ruled in Lutz’s favor, holding that Lutz had the right to use the path. The court of appeals affirmed. Van Valkenburgh later sued Lutz, complaining that the remainder of Lutz’s structures (a garage and a shed) infringed upon his land. Lutz generally denied the allegations, and additionally filed a counterclaim asserting that he owned the land claimed by Van Valkenburgh by virtue of having adversely possessed it for more than thirty years. The trial judge agreed with Lutz and held that Lutz had acquired title to the land by adverse possession. The intermediate appeals court affirmed, and Van Valkenburgh appealed.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Dye, J.)
Dissent (Fuld, J.)
What to do next…
Unlock this case brief with a free (no-commitment) trial membership of Quimbee.
You’ll be in good company: Quimbee is one of the most widely used and trusted sites for law students, serving more than 97,000 law students since 2011. Some law schools—such as Yale, Vanderbilt, Berkeley, and the University of Illinois—even subscribe directly to Quimbee for all their law students. Read our student testimonials.
Learn more about Quimbee’s unique (and proven) approach to achieving great grades at law school.
Quimbee is a company hell-bent on one thing: helping you get an “A” in every course you take in law school, so you can graduate at the top of your class and get a high-paying law job. We’re not just a study aid for law students; we’re the study aid for law students. Read more about Quimbee.
Here's why 239,000 law students have relied on our case briefs:
- Written by law professors and practitioners, not other law students. 14,200 briefs, keyed to 189 casebooks. Top-notch customer support.
- The right amount of information, includes the facts, issues, rule of law, holding and reasoning, and any concurrences and dissents.
- Access in your classes, works on your mobile and tablet. Massive library of related video lessons and high quality multiple-choice questions.
- Easy to use, uniform format for every case brief. Written in plain English, not in legalese. Our briefs summarize and simplify; they don’t just repeat the court’s language.