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Property Law

Property Law Supreme Court Opinion

   by Zigadto, Janet

 http://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=464

SC19568, SC19569 - Mayer v. Historic District Commission (Historic districts; certificate of appropriateness; "The principal issue in this appeal is whether the statutory aggrievement principles of General Statutes § 8-8 extend to appeals from the decisions of historic district commissions brought pursuant to General Statutes § 7-147i. The plaintiffs, Robert Mayer and Mary Pat Mayer, appeal from the judgments of the trial court dismissing their appeals from two decisions of the named defendant, the Historic District Commission of the Town of Groton (commission), with respect to alterations to a barn located on real property owned by the defendants Steven Young and Caroline Young (applicants). On appeal, the plaintiffs claim that the trial court improperly concluded that: (1) statutory aggrievement under § 8-8 does not extend to historic district commission appeals brought pursuant to § 7-147i; and (2) they had failed to establish that they were classically aggrieved with respect to each of the commission's two decisions. We disagree and, accordingly, affirm the judgments of the trial court.")


Land Use Law Supreme Court Opinion

   by Roy, Christopher

 http://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=455

SC19797 - Lyme Land Conservation Trust, Inc. v. Platner ("This case raises the questions of whether a conservation restriction on private property was violated by the owner of that property and, if so, whether the remedies ordered by the trial court were proper. The defendant Beverly Platner appeals from the judgment of the trial court awarding legal and equitable relief to the plaintiff Lyme Land Conservation Trust, Inc., after concluding that the defendant had violated a conservation restriction granted to the plaintiff by a former owner of the defendant’s property. The defendant claims that the trial court improperly found violations of the conservation restriction by misinterpreting it and improperly ordered relief that was either legally unauthorized or lacking in evidentiary support. We agree with the trial court’s interpretation of the conservation restriction and its consequent finding that the defendant had violated it in multiple respects, and we see no impropriety with respect to the portion of the court’s judgment awarding the plaintiff equitable relief. We agree with the defendant, however, that the court’s award of punitive damages was noncompliant with the authorizing provision, General Statutes § 52-560a (d), and that its award of attorney’s fees, in one respect, was improper. Accordingly, we affirm in part and reverse in part the judgment of the trial court.")


Property Law Appellate Court Opinions

   by Zigadto, Janet

 http://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=439

AC37620 - Mangiafico v. Farmington (Injunction; "The plaintiff . . . appeals from the judgment of the trial court dismissing four of the five counts in his complaint and rendering summary judgment on the remaining count. In his complaint, the plaintiff alleged that the actions of the municipal defendants, the town of Farmington (town) and five individuals sued in their official capacities (individual defendants), in placing his residential property on the town's blight list, issuing citations for blight violations, imposing daily fines for blight violations and recording liens on his property for failing to pay those fines, violated his due process rights, constituted an unconstitutional taking of his property, and inflicted severe emotional distress. The plaintiff sought declaratory and injunctive relief, a discharge of the municipal blight liens, and indemnification by the town for damages caused by the individually named defendants.

On appeal, the plaintiff claims that the court improperly granted the defendants' motion to dismiss on the ground that he had failed to exhaust his administrative remedies as provided by statute and the Code of the Town of Farmington (code). Further, the plaintiff claims that the court improperly granted the defendants' motion for summary judgment on his count seeking discharge of the municipal blight liens on the ground that he could not collaterally attack the validity of the assessments underlying those liens. We affirm the judgment of the trial court.")

AC37976 - Mangiafico v. Farmington (Petition to open blight citation; "The defendant, the town of Farmington (town), appeals from the judgment rendered by the trial court . . . in favor of the plaintiff . . . on his 'Petition to Reopen Assessment.' The plaintiff's petition challenged the town's issuance of various citations for violations of the town's blight ordinance. On appeal, the town claims that the court . . . improperly (1) denied its motion to dismiss the plaintiff's action for lack of subject matter jurisdiction, and (2) determined that the town was judicially estopped from arguing that the plaintiff's claims were not ripe for adjudication because it had taken an inconsistent position in a prior action between the parties. We agree with the town's claims and, accordingly, remand the case to the trial court with direction to dismiss the plaintiff's action.")



Property Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Zigadto, Janet

 http://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=385

AC34950 - Fairfield Merrittview Ltd. Partnership v. Norwalk (Tax appeal; "In this real estate tax appeal, the defendant city of Norwalk appeals from the judgment of the trial court sustaining the appeal of the plaintiff, Fairfield Merrittview SPE, LLC, pursuant to General Statutes § 12-117a, and ordering the reduction of the defendant's tax assessment levied against the plaintiff's real property. The defendant raises two arguments in support of its claim that the court erred when it reduced the subject property's assessed fair market value, as of October 1, 2008, from $49,036,800 to $34,059,753. First, the defendant claims that the court improperly relied upon a 2006 'annual income and expense report' to calculate the property's net rentable area, when instead it should have used the plaintiff's December 2008 rent roll for that purpose, because the 2008 rent roll assertedly reflected the subject property's net rentable area as of October 1, 2008, more accurately than the 2006 report. Second, the defendant argues that the court improperly excluded $190,000 of 'other income' attributable to the subject property from its calculations and, therefore, the court's calculation regarding the property's potential gross income was clearly erroneous. We affirm the judgment of the trial court.")


Landlord/Tenant Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Zigadto, Janet

 http://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=384

AC37930 - Friedman v. Gomez (Summary process; "The defendants . . . appeal from the judgment of the trial court, rendered after a trial to the court, in favor of the plaintiff . . . on his summary process complaint and against the defendants on their special defenses and counterclaims. On appeal, the defendants claim that the court (1) improperly limited its jurisdiction when it concluded that it did not have the authority to determine title to the subject property, (2) improperly determined that Guillermo Sanchez, Sr. (Sanchez Sr.), was no longer a party to this action, and (3) abused its discretion in finding that the defendants failed to prove that they had an equitable interest in the subject property. The plaintiff claims that the defendants' appeal is moot and must be dismissed because they voluntarily vacated the premises after the appeal was filed. We conclude that the appeal is not moot, and we affirm the judgment of the trial court.")



Property Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Zigadto, Janet

 http://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=348

AC39746 - Ledyard v. WMS Gaming, Inc. (Personal property taxes; "The motion before the court challenges our jurisdiction over the appeal of the defendant, WMS Gaming, Inc., from the decision of the trial court rendering summary judgment as to liability only in favor of the plaintiff, the town of Ledyard, with respect to certain attorney's fees incurred by the plaintiff. The plaintiff moves to dismiss the defendant's appeal for lack of subject matter jurisdiction, claiming that the trial court's decision is not an appealable final judgment because the trial court has not determined the amount of the attorney's fees. We conclude that the trial court's decision rendering summary judgment as to liability only in favor of the plaintiff with regard to the attorney's fees at issue is not an appealable final judgment. Accordingly, we grant the plaintiff's motion to dismiss the defendant's appeal.

The record before the court reveals the following facts and procedural history. In 2008, the plaintiff commenced the underlying action to collect unpaid personal property taxes that it had imposed on slot machines that the defendant owned and leased to the Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation (Tribal Nation) for use in its gaming facilities.")


Property Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Zigadto, Janet

 http://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=334

AC38289 - McDonald v. McDonald (Partition of real property; "The plaintiff . . . appeals from the summary judgment rendered in favor of the defendants . . . On appeal, he claims that the trial court improperly concluded that his claim for partition of certain real property jointly owned by all of the parties was barred by res judicata because (1) the previous judgment that was relied upon by the trial court as having said preclusive effect was not a final judgment and (2) his right to partition is absolute. We affirm the judgment of the trial court.")


Property Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Zigadto, Janet

 http://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=283

AC38080 - Geiger v. Carey (Trespass; injunction; quiet title; "The plaintiffs . . . brought this action against the defendant . . . their next door neighbor, seeking money damages, punitive damages, and an order requiring the defendant to remove a fence. The complaint sounded in three counts:(1) trespass; (2) violation of Connecticut's tree cutting statute, pursuant to General Statutes § 52-560; and (3) malicious erection of a structure, pursuant to General Statutes § 52-570. The defendant brought a counterclaim against the plaintiffs seeking injunctive relief, monetary damages, punitive damages, and an order of quiet title to the land under the fence and airspace above the fence. The counterclaim sounded in seven counts:(1) private nuisance; (2 through 4) trespass; (5) quiet title; (6) intentional infliction of emotional distress; and (7) negligent infliction of emotional distress. . .

We have examined the record on appeal and considered the briefs and the arguments of the parties, and conclude that the judgment of the trial court should be affirmed. Because the trial court thoroughly addressed the arguments raised in this appeal, we adopt its well reasoned decision as a proper statement of the facts and the applicable law on the issues.See Geiger v. Carey, __ Conn. App. __, __ A.3d __ (2015) (appendix). Any further discussion by this court would serve no useful purpose. See, e.g., Woodruff v. Hemingway, 297 Conn. 317, 321, 2 A.3d 857 (2010).

The judgment is affirmed.")


Property Law Supreme Court Opinions

   by Zigadto, Janet

 http://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=278

SC19554 - Chestnut Point Realty, LLC v. East Windsor (Taxation; appeal from assessment of real property taxes; "The statutory right to appeal from an assessment of real property by a municipal board of assessment appeals is conditioned on the property owner "mak[ing] application" to the Superior Court within two months of the date the board mails notice of its action. See General Statutes § 12-117a. The question presented by this case is whether, for purposes of this limitation period, such application is made upon the filing of the required appeal documents in the Superior Court, or rather, when those appeal documents have been served upon the taxing municipality. The plaintiff, Chestnut Point Realty, LLC, appeals from the judgment of the Appellate Court affirming the trial court's dismissal of its municipal tax appeal due to untimeliness. Chestnut Point Realty, LLC v. East Windsor, 158 Conn. App. 565, 575, 119 A.3d 1229 (2015). The plaintiff claims that, under the plain language of § 12-117a, its appeal was timely commenced upon the filing of its appeal documents in the Superior Court, even though the appeal was not served on the defendant, the town of East Windsor (town), until a date beyond the expiration of the two month appeal period. We disagree and, accordingly, affirm the judgment of the Appellate Court.")

SC19555 - Kettle Brook Realty, LLC v. East Windsor (Taxation; appeal from assessment of real property taxes; "This case raises the issue of whether a municipal tax appeal brought pursuant to General Statutes § 12-117a is commenced, for purposes of meeting the limitation period prescribed by that statute, by the filing of the tax appeal with the Superior Court or, rather, upon the service of the appeal on the municipal taxing authority. The plaintiff, Kettle Brook Realty, LLC, appeals from the judgment of the Appellate Court affirming the trial court's dismissal of its tax appeal due to untimeliness. Kettle Brook Realty, LLC v. East Windsor, 158 Conn. App. 576, 579, 119 A.3d 1276 (2015). The plaintiff claims that, under the plain language of § 12-117a, its appeal was timely commenced upon the filing of its appeal documents in the Superior Court, even though the appeal was not served on the defendant, the town of East Windsor (town), until a date beyond the expiration of the two month appeal period. We disagree and, accordingly, affirm the judgment of the Appellate Court.")



Property Law Supreme Court Opinion

   by Zigadto, Janet

 http://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=262

SC19668 - Lackman v. McAnulty (Declaratory judgment; quiet title; "In this case, we consider whether a grantor's failure to record a separate document limiting his powers ' "as trustee" ' in accordance with General Statutes § 47-20, when that grantor quitclaimed real property to himself as trustee, has the effect of nullifying the transfer of that property to the trust corpus, thereby allowing that grantor, as an individual, subsequently to devise that property through his will. The plaintiffs . . . appeal from the trial court's award of summary judgment in favor of the defendants, who are beneficiaries of a trust settled by the decedent . . . . On appeal, the plaintiffs claim that the trial court improperly determined that the phrase 'otherwise dispose of' within § 47-20 does not include a specific devise in a will. The plaintiffs argue, therefore, that the decedent's failure to record a separate document limiting his powers as trustee when he quitclaimed a certain parcel of real property to himself as trustee subsequently allowed the decedent to devise the property to the plaintiffs in his will. We disagree with the plaintiffs, and conclude that § 47-20 does not apply in this case because it protects only the interests of third parties who obtain property by means of a conveyance from a grantor who had received that property as trustee in the first instance. Because § 47-20 did not nullify the decedent's quitclaim deed to himself as trustee, the property was a trust asset, and the specific devise in the decedent's will adeemed. Accordingly, we affirm the judgment of the trial court.")


Supreme Court Opinions

   by Roy, Christopher

 http://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=243

SC19558 - Dattco, Inc. v. Commissioner of Transportation
SC19558 - Collins Bus Service, Inc. v. Commissioner of Transportation
SC19558 - Nason Partners, LLC v. Commissioner of Transportation
SC19558 - New Britain Transportation Co. v. Commissioner of Transportation ("General Statutes § 13b-36 (a) permits the defendant, the Commissioner of Transportation (commissioner), to take by eminent domain ‘any land, buildings, equipment or facilities’ if the commissioner finds that their taking is ‘necessary for the operation or improvement of transportation services.’ In this appeal, we must determine whether the commissioner’s power to take ‘facilities’ includes the power to take a government issued certificate permitting a bus company the right to operate over a given route. We conclude that it does not.")


Property Law Supreme and Appellate Court Opinions

   by Zigadto, Janet

 http://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=242

SC19551 - Nutmeg Housing Development Corp. v. Colchester (Taxation; "In this appeal, we consider whether the trial court correctly determined that the plaintiff . . . failed to establish aggrievement in that it failed to prove that the defendant . . . had overvalued its property for tax purposes. After a bench trial, the court found that the plaintiff had failed to establish that it was aggrieved by the town's valuation because the court found that the plaintiff's expert did not present sufficient, credible evidence to establish that the town had overvalued the property. The trial court rendered judgment for the town, and the plaintiff appealed. We conclude that the trial court's determination of credibility is supported by the record, and, thus, we affirm the judgment of the trial court.")

AC37876 - Benjamin v. Norwalk (Adverse possession; "The plaintiffs . . . appeal from the judgment of the trial court denying their claim of adverse possession of 708 square feet of land adjacent to their home in Norwalk (contested area).On appeal, the plaintiffs claim that the court erred by (1) finding that The Shorefront Park Company dedicated all of the roads shown on a subdivision map for the use of the defendant city of Norwalk (city), (2) determining that it was their burden to rebut municipal acceptance of dedicated roadways by clear and convincing evidence, and (3) finding that dominion over the contested area was shared.We affirm the judgment of the trial court.")



Property Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Zigadto, Janet

 http://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=223

AC38047 - Village Apartments, LLC v. Ward (Quiet title action; "The plaintiff . . . appeals from the judgment of the trial court rendered in favor of the defendants . . . after a trial to the court, quieting title to a claimed easement in the form of a right-of-way (right-of-way) over the defendants' real property (property). The court determined that the Marketable Title Act (act), General Statutes § 47-33b et seq., extinguished the right-of-way because it was not preserved in the roots of title of the parties as required by the act and did not meet the apparent easement exceptions in General Statutes § 47-33h. On appeal, the plaintiff claims that the court erred in finding that the act extinguished its right-of-way (1) because it predated and was not properly set forth in either root of title; and (2) although there were visible, physical indicators of the existence of the right-of-way. We affirm the judgment of the trial court.")


Collection of Delinquent Property Taxes - 2016 Edition

   by Roy, Christopher

 http://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=193

The 2016 edition of Collection of Delinquent Property Taxes in Connecticut has been posted to our research guides page.

Table of Contents

Section 1: Foreclosure of Tax Liens
Section 2: Summary Foreclosure of Tax Liens
Section 3: Collection Actions
Section 4: Tax Warrants
Section 5: Alias Tax Warrants
Section 6: Motor Vehicle Property Taxes


Appellate Court Opinion

   by Mazur, Catherine

 http://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=156

AC37811 - Vaccaro v. Shell Beach Condominium, Inc. ("The plaintiff, Enrico Vaccaro, appeals from the summary judgment rendered by the trial court in favor of the defendants, Shell Beach Condominium, Inc. (association), and certain individual members of its board of directors, Andrew Hames, Frank Meolli, Michael Gagliardi, Michelle Augliera, and Raymond Vermette (individually named defendants), on the basis that all of the plaintiff's claims arising from the deprivation of the use of a particular garage were time barred. The plaintiff argues that the court erred in rendering summary judgment in favor of the defendants, because, inter alia: (1) the trial court applied the wrong statute of limitations to count one of his complaint, which sought to enforce the condominium instruments; and (2) genuine issues of material fact exist as to whether the applicable statutes of limitations were tolled by virtue of the continuing course of conduct doctrine. We affirm the judgment of the court.")


Property Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Zigadto, Janet

 http://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=135

AC38011 - Cornelius v. Arnold ("The self-represented plaintiff, Frederick Cornelius, appeals from the summary judgment rendered in favor of the defendant, Linda Arnold, the tax assessor of the town of Farmington. On appeal, the plaintiff claims that the trial court improperly concluded that (1) his action for relief from wrongful assessment was untimely because he commenced the action beyond the one year time limitation set forth in General Statutes § 12-119, and (2) he failed to establish a genuine issue of material fact as to whether a continuing course of conduct tolled that time limitation.We disagree with both claims and, accordingly, affirm the judgment of the trial court.")



Contract Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Roy, Christopher

 http://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=92

AC37988 - Solairaj v. Mannarino Builders, Inc.("The plaintiffs, Manivannan Solairaj and Malini Manivannan, appeal from the judgment rendered after a trial to the court in favor of the defendant, Mannarino Builders, Inc. On appeal, the plaintiffs claim that the court’s findings underlying its conclusions that (1) the plaintiffs breached the purchase agreement and (2) the defendant did not breach the agreement were clearly erroneous. We disagree and, accordingly, affirm the judgment of the trial court.")


Declaratory Judgment Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Roy, Christopher

 http://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=82

AC37588 - Prime Locations of CT, LLC v. Rocky Hill Development, LLC ("The defendants MPM Enterprises, LLC (MPM), and Luke DiMaria appeal from the judgment of the trial court rendered in favor of the plaintiffs, Prime Locations of CT, LLC (Prime Locations), Hasson Holdings, LLC (Hasson), SMS Realty, LLC (SMS), and C&G Holdings, LLC (C&G). On appeal, the defendants argue that the court improperly (1) concluded that the plaintiffs had standing and (2) decided the case on a basis that was not pleaded, briefed or argued during the proceedings in the trial court. We agree with the defendants' second claim, and reverse the judgment of the trial court.")


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