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Property Law


Property Law Appellate Court Opinions

   by Zigadto, Janet

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=4809

AC44517 - Taylor v. Pollner ("In this quiet title action, the plaintiff, Christopher J. Taylor, appeals from the judgment of the trial court to the extent that the court awarded attorney's fees to the defendant, Lisa Pollner, pursuant to Practice Book § 1-21A. On appeal, the plaintiff claims that the court abused its discretion in awarding monetary sanctions to compensate the defendant for her attorney's fees and that those fees were excessive, unreasonable, and clearly erroneous. We affirm the judgment of the trial court awarding attorney's fees to the defendant.")

AC44301 - Wooden v. Perez ("In this adverse possession action, the substitute plaintiff, Anthony E. Monelli, as administrator of the estate of the decedent, Lonnie Thomas, Sr., appeals from the judgment of the trial court granting the motion to dismiss filed by the defendant, Dinanyelly E. Perez, on the ground that the substitute plaintiff lacked standing to maintain the action. The substitute plaintiff claims that the court incorrectly determined that he lacked standing to pursue the adverse possession claim because the decedent had devised the property at issue to a trust for the benefit of his children and, therefore, only the trustees of that testamentary trust, and not the executor or administrator of the decedent's estate, had standing to prosecute the present action. We disagree with the substitute plaintiff and, accordingly, affirm the judgment of the court.")



Property Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Zigadto, Janet

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=4758

AC43912 - Lebanon Historical Society, Inc v. Attorney General (Quiet title, motion to dismiss, standing, subject matter jurisdiction; "In this action to quiet title to, and to impose conservation and preservation restrictions on, property in the town of Lebanon (town), the plaintiff, Lebanon Historical Society, Inc., appeals from the judgment of the trial court granting the motion to dismiss filed by the defendant First Congregational Church of Lebanon (church), on the ground that the plaintiff lacks standing to bring the action. On appeal, the plaintiff contends that the court erred when it concluded that the plaintiff lacked standing to bring a quiet title action on the portion of the Lebanon Town Green (Green), where the church is located (Church Parcel). We affirm the judgment of the trial court.")


Property Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Zigadto, Janet

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=4749

AC43487 - Briarwood of Silvermine, LLC v. Yew Street Partners, LLC (Adverse possession, quiet title, trespass, motion to dismiss; "In this adverse possession action, the plaintiffs, Briarwood of Silvermine, LLC (Briarwood), and Ganga Duleep, appeal from the judgment in favor of the defendants, Yew Street Partners, LLC (Yew Street), and Juliann Altieri, rendered by the trial court after it granted the defendants' motion to dismiss, which was made orally pursuant to Practice Book § 15-8, after the plaintiffs had rested their case-in-chief, and on the counts of the defendants' counterclaims seeking to quiet title and for trespass. On appeal, the plaintiffs claim that the court erred by (1) dismissing their claims pursuant to § 15-8, (2) rendering judgment in favor of Yew Street on its counterclaim seeking to quiet title, and (3) rendering judgment in favor of Altieri on the count of her counterclaim for trespass. Because we conclude that the trial court incorrectly applied the law of adverse possession when determining whether the plaintiffs established a prima facie case of adverse possession, we reverse the judgment of the court.")


Property Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Zigadto, Janet

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=4725

AC44704 - Brookstone Homes, LLC v. Merco Holdings, LLC (Application for discharge of lis pendens, breach of contract; "This joint appeal was filed in two trial court cases to challenge the trial court's order in one case granting an application to discharge the lis pendens filed against multiple properties. We ordered the parties to file memoranda to address (1) whether this appeal should be dismissed as moot as to the order granting the application to discharge the lis pendens because that order has been recorded on the land records and (2) whether the appeal should be dismissed for lack of a final judgment as to the portion of the appeal taken as to the underlying breach of contract case that is still pending before the trial court. Having considered the memorandum submitted by the appellants, we dismiss the appeal.")



Property Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Zigadto, Janet

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=4676

AC43995 - Robinson v. Tindill (Erection of divisional fence; trespass; unpreserved claim of conversion; "This case arises from the erection of a fence by the defendants, William Tindill (Tindill) and Erika Tindill, between their property and the adjacent property owned by the plaintiffs, Ellis Robinson and Nicole Robinson. The defendants appeal from the judgment of the trial court rendered in favor of the plaintiffs after a hearing in damages and the court's prior order granting the plaintiffs' motion for summary judgment as to liability and finding both defendants liable for trespass and Tindill liable for conversion. On appeal, the defendants claim that the court erred (1) in finding them liable for trespass because the fence at issue was a statutorily compliant divisional fence pursuant to General Statutes § 47-43, (2) in finding Erika Tindill liable for trespass, even though she played no role in erecting the fence, and (3) in finding Tindill liable for conversion because the plaintiffs failed to plead, or present any evidence in support of, a claim for conversion. We affirm in part and reverse in part the judgment of the trial court.")


Land Use Law Supreme Court Slip Opinion

   by Zigadto, Janet

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=4668

SC20587 - South Windsor v. Lanata ("The sole issue in this certified appeal is whether the Appellate Court properly remanded this case to the trial court for a new trial, rather than a proceeding limited to damages, after reversing in part the judgment of the trial court, which assessed a fine and imposed injunctive relief for certain zoning violations pursuant to General Statutes § 8-12. The plaintiffs, the town of South Windsor (town) and its zoning enforcement officer, Pamela Oliva, appeal, upon our grant of their petition for certification, from the judgment of the Appellate Court reversing in part the judgment of the trial court in their favor and remanding the case for a new trial on count two of their complaint. South Windsor v. Lanata, 203 Conn. App. 89, 92, 115, 247 A.3d 626 (2021). On appeal, the plaintiffs claim that, after concluding that the trial court had improperly assessed a fine on the named defendant, Kristin Lanata, pursuant to § 8-12 for zoning violations for a period of time that she was under lawful orders not to disturb her property because of an ongoing fire investigation, the Appellate Court improperly remanded the case for a new trial on that count, rather than a proceeding limited to damages. Because there is no remaining dispute as to the defendant's liability for the zoning violations, we reverse the judgment of the Appellate Court in part.

. . .

The judgment of the Appellate Court is reversed in part and the case is remanded to that court with direction to reverse the judgment of the trial court as to count two of the complaint only as to its determination of fines and remedies, and to remand the case to the trial court for further proceedings as to damages and remedies.")


Tort Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Agati, Taryn

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=4642

AC43382 - Kloiber v. Jellen ("In this property dispute among neighbors, the self-represented plaintiffs, Alfred J. Kloiber and Melanie McNichol, appeal from the judgment of the trial court in favor of the defendants, Chris Jellen and Linda Jellen. On appeal, the plaintiffs raise a variety of issues related to the court's disposition of their trespass, private nuisance, negligence, and statutory negligence claims. Following supplemental briefing by the parties on the issue of standing, we conclude that the plaintiffs lacked the requisite standing to maintain this action. Accordingly, we reverse the judgment of the trial court and remand the case with direction to render a judgment of dismissal.")


Property Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Zigadto, Janet

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=4632

AC42644 - Pimental v. River Junction Estates LLC (Quiet title; public highway; common-law theory of dedication and acceptance; "In Connecticut, one method of establishing a public highway is through the common-law theory of dedication and acceptance. See Montanaro v. Aspetuck Land Trust, Inc., 137 Conn. App. 1, 10, 48 A.3d 107, cert. denied, 307 Conn. 932, 56 A.3d 715 (2012). This appeal concerns the trial court's determination that the defendant River Junction Estates, LLC (River Junction), failed to prove, pursuant to such theory, that a portion of Starr Road in the town of Thompson (town), i.e., from approximately 0.15 miles beyond Starr Road's intersection with New Road to the Rhode Island state border (disputed portion), is a public highway. River Junction appeals from the judgment of the trial court, rendered following a trial to the court—in favor of the plaintiffs, Donald Pimental, Melissa Pimental, Jayson Livingstone, and Gail Livingstone, as well as the defendant town—on the plaintiffs' claim to quiet title to the disputed portion of the road. River Junction's primary claim on appeal is that the court erred in failing to find a manifested intent by the owner of the fee to dedicate the disputed portion of Starr Road to public use. Because we disagree with River Junction's primary claim, which is dispositive of this appeal, we affirm the judgment of the trial court.")


Property Law Supreme Court Slip Opinion

   by Zigadto, Janet

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=4615

SC20506 - Rainbow Housing Corp. v. Cromwell (Property taxes; "General Statutes § 12-81 (7) generally exempts from taxation real property owned by a tax-exempt charitable organization and used exclusively for charitable purposes; see General Statutes § 12-81 (7) (A); but excludes from that exemption 'housing subsidized, in whole or in part, by federal, state or local government . . . .' General Statutes § 12-81 (7) (B). The subsidized housing exclusion contains an exception for 'temporary housing' used primarily for certain enumerated charitable purposes, including 'housing for . . . persons with a mental health disorder . . . .' General Statutes § 12-81 (7) (B) (iii). This appeal requires us to determine whether the trial court correctly determined that property used for a residential mental health treatment program was tax exempt under § 12-81 (7) on the grounds that it does not provide housing subsidized by the government and that any housing provided is temporary. We affirm the judgment of the trial court."


Property Law Supreme Court Slip Opinion

   by Zigadto, Janet

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=4599

SC20436 - Abel v. Johnson ("In this certified appeal, we consider whether deed language providing that the grantees took title 'subject to' an earlier deed, which established a residential use restriction for the benefit of the original grantor's retained property, rendered that restriction enforceable against those grantees by adjoining property owners whose deeds contain similar 'subject to' language, pursuant to a common plan of development theory. The plaintiffs, Michael Abel and Carol Abel, appeal, upon our grant of their petition for certification, from the judgment of the Appellate Court reversing in part the judgment of the trial court, rendered after a court trial, granting injunctive relief against the defendant, Celeste M. Johnson, enforcing one restrictive covenant limiting the use of the property to residential use, which was contained in a deed that was executed by the original grantors of the parties' real properties, and two other use restrictions that appeared in a separate declaration that applied to the properties. See Abel v. Johnson, 194 Conn. App. 120, 142–43, 156, 220 A.3d 843 (2019). On appeal, the plaintiffs claim that the Appellate Court incorrectly concluded that they lacked standing to enforce the residential use restriction. We agree and, accordingly, reverse in part the judgment of the Appellate Court.")


Landlord and Tenant Law Supreme Court Slip Opinion

   by Zigadto, Janet

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=4587

SC20395 - Boardwalk Realty Associates, LLC v. M & S Gateway Associates, LLC (Receiver of rents; whether trial court correctly held that receiver of rents appointed under § 12-163a is not authorized to collect rent or use and occupancy payments from occupants of property when owner of property is not charging rent; "This appeal is the most recent battle in the efforts of the town of Canton (town) to collect unpaid property taxes on a parcel of commercial real property (property) that was effectively abandoned in 2001 by its owner, Cadle Properties of Connecticut, Inc. (Cadle), and on which the defendants, M & S Gateway Associates, LLC (Gateway) and Mitchell Volkswagen, LLC (Mitchell), have operated an automobile dealership since 1995. The plaintiff, Boardwalk Realty Associates, LLC, which is the court-appointed receiver of rents pursuant to General Statutes § 12-163a, appeals from the trial court's judgment, rendered in accordance with the court's granting of the defendants' motion for summary judgment with respect to the plaintiff's complaint seeking rent, as well as use and occupancy payments, from the defendants. On appeal, the plaintiff contends that the trial court incorrectly concluded that the plaintiff lacked authority under § 12-163a to impose and collect rent or use and occupancy payments in the place of Cadle, the tax delinquent owner that effectively abandoned the property in 2001. We conclude that a receiver appointed under § 12-163a is not statutorily authorized to impose and collect rent or use and occupancy payments under the circumstances of this case, when the property has been abandoned by the owner prior to the appointment of the receiver and there is no existing obligation for the receiver to enforce. Accordingly, we affirm the judgment of the trial court.")


Property Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Zigadto, Janet

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=4575

AC42867 - Capone v. Nizzardo (Partition of real property; "The plaintiff . . . appeals from the judgment of the trial court ordering the defendant . . . to pay her $277,500 in just compensation for her 25 percent interest in the property owned by the parties. Specifically, the plaintiff challenges the court's determination that the fair market value of the property is $1,110,000. On appeal, the plaintiff claims that the court (1) committed plain error when it determined the highest and best use of the property without considering the applicable zoning regulations, (2) made clearly erroneous factual findings in determining the highest and best use of the property, and (3) due to these errors, the court abused its discretion in determining the value of the property. We disagree with the plaintiff's claims and, accordingly, affirm the judgment of the trial court.")


Property Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Zigadto, Janet

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=4558

AC43922 - Your Mansion Real Estate, LLC v. RCN Capital Funding, LLC ("Following a trial to the court, the defendant, RCN Capital Funding, LLC, appeals from the judgment of the trial court rendered in favor of the plaintiff, Your Mansion Real Estate, LLC, in an action brought pursuant to General Statutes § 49-8 (c). On appeal, the defendant claims that the trial court erred in (1) not dismissing the plaintiff's complaint on the ground that the plaintiff did not have standing because it admitted that it had incurred no actual damages and, therefore, was not aggrieved, (2) not permitting the defendant to introduce testimony concerning whether it was common practice for borrowers to contact the defendant if they had not received a § 49-8 (c) release, (3) rejecting the defendant's first special defense in which it alleged that the plaintiff had failed to mitigate its damages, and (4) rejecting the defendant's second and third special defenses in which it claimed that § 49-8 (c) was unconstitutional because it allows for punitive damages and excessive fines in violation of the eighth and fourteenth amendments to the United States constitution. We affirm the judgment of the trial court.")


Property Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Zigadto, Janet

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=4517

AC43918 - Black v. West Hartford (Tax appeal; motor vehicle assessment; standing; claim that defendant state agency violated statute (§ 12-71d) in recommending certain guide's schedule of motor vehicle values that town used to assess plaintiff's motor vehicle; claim that trial court improperly granted motion to dismiss on ground of sovereign immunity; "The self-represented plaintiff, Kenneth A. Black, appeals from the judgment of the trial court dismissing his action as against the defendant Office of Policy and Management for allegedly violating General Statutes § 12-71d in recommending the schedule of motor vehicle values that the defendant town of West Hartford (town) used to assess his vehicle for the 2018 tax year. On appeal, the plaintiff claims that the court erred in granting the defendant's motion to dismiss on the ground that the action was barred by the doctrine of sovereign immunity. We affirm the judgment of the court, but on the alternative ground that the plaintiff lacks standing to maintain the action against the defendant. Because we affirm on this alternative ground, we do not reach the trial court's determination that the action was barred by the defendant's sovereign immunity.")


Civil Procedure Supreme Court Slip Opinion

   by Zigadto, Janet

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=4510

SC20457 - Thornton v. Jacobs ( Appellate procedure; whether Appellate Court properly Dismissed, as frivolous, appeal of nonparty witness from Trial Court's order enforcing subpoena for out-of-state lawsuit; "This appeal stems from an underlying action being litigated in Florida by the plaintiffs in the present case, John L. Thornton and Margaret B. Thornton. The parties to the Florida action are the plaintiffs in the present case, who are the defendants and counterclaimants in the Florida action, and 100 Emerald Beach, LC, which is the plaintiff and counterclaim defendant in the Florida action. Lamia Jacobs, the defendant in the present case, is the sole owner of 100 Emerald Beach, LC, but is not named individually as a party in the Florida case. Jacobs and her husband, Bradley Jacobs, reside primarily in Connecticut. The Florida trial court ruled that it lacked personal jurisdiction to subpoena the defendant and Bradley Jacobs but granted the plaintiffs permission to seek to subpoena them in Connecticut. The plaintiffs served a subpoena to depose the defendant in Connecticut, and she filed a motion to quash in the Superior Court in Stamford, objecting to the subpoena. She argued that the plaintiffs, instead of issuing a subpoena to her, should instead subpoena 100 Emerald Beach, LC, in order to obtain the information being sought. The trial court, Hon. Kenneth B. Povodator, judge trial referee, denied the motion to quash, and the defendant filed a timely appeal with the Appellate Court.

The plaintiffs moved in the Appellate Court for permission to file a late motion to dismiss, arguing that the appeal was frivolous. The defendant opposed the motion. The Appellate Court granted the motion to file an untimely motion to dismiss and, thereafter, without issuing an opinion, dismissed the appeal. The defendant filed a petition for certification to appeal to this court, which we granted on the following issue: "Did the Appellate Court properly dismiss, as frivolous, the appeal of a nonparty witness from the trial court's order enforcing a subpoena for an out-of-state lawsuit?" Thornton v. Jacobs, 334 Conn. 929, 224 A.3d 538 (2020). After we granted certification, the plaintiffs withdrew the subpoena they had sought to enforce against the defendant in Connecticut. In light of this withdrawal, we now dismiss this certified appeal as moot and vacate the judgment of the Appellate Court dismissing the defendant's appeal.")


Property Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Zigadto, Janet

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=4484

AC43650 - Zealand v. Balber ("The plaintiff . . . appeals from the judgment of the trial court in this partition by sale action. On appeal, the plaintiff claims that the court improperly (1) concluded that she had a minimal interest in the property at issue, (2) excluded certain evidence that she sought to admit at trial, (3) exceeded its statutory authority under General Statutes § 52-500 (a) and (4) concluded that a payment of $25,000 by the defendant . . . to the plaintiff constituted just compensation for her interest in that property. We affirm the judgment of the trial court.")


Foreclosure Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Agati, Taryn

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=4467

AC44016 - Mirlis v. Yeshiva of New Haven, Inc. ("The defendant, Yeshiva of New Haven, Inc., appeals from the judgment of strict foreclosure rendered by the trial court in favor of the plaintiff, Eliyahu Mirlis. On appeal, the defendant claims that the court improperly determined the valuation of the property in question. We affirm the judgment of the trial court.")


Property Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Zigadto, Janet

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=4465

AC43042 - Jackson v. Pennymac Loan Services, LLC (Release of mortgage pursuant to statute (§ 49-8); whether trial court improperly dismissed plaintiffs' action for lack of subject matter jurisdiction on basis of plaintiffs' alleged failure to satisfy requirements of § 49-8 (c) regarding statutory demand notice for release of mortgage, etc.; "The plaintiffs, Mary Jackson and Johnnie Jackson, appeal from the judgment of the trial court granting the motion of the defendant, Pennymac Loan Services, LLC, to dismiss the action of the plaintiffs in which they alleged that the defendant violated General Statutes § 49-8 (c) by failing to provide a timely release of their mortgage. The defendant did not argue in its motion that the action should be dismissed for lack of subject matter jurisdiction due to the plaintiffs' alleged failure to satisfy the requirements of § 49-8 (c) regarding a statutory demand notice for release of the mortgage. Nevertheless, the court dismissed the action on that ground. On appeal, the plaintiffs claim that the court deprived them of due process by dismissing their action on a ground that the court had raised sua sponte without affording them notice or an opportunity to be heard. We agree with the plaintiffs that neither the defendant's motion to dismiss nor the court alerted them that their alleged noncompliance with the statutory demand notice requirements in § 49-8 (c) was at issue and, accordingly, we reverse the judgment of the trial court.")


Property Law Supreme Court Slip Opinion

   by Zigadto, Janet

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=4454

SC20388 - Wilton Campus 1691, LLC. v. Wilton (Taxation; late filing penalty pursuant to General Statutes § 12-63c (d); whether Appellate Court incorrectly concluded that General Statutes § 12-55 (b) precluded tax assessor from imposing late filing penalties after taking and subscribing to oath on grand list; "This appeal involves the temporal limits of a municipal assessor's authority to impost penalties on taxpayers. Specifically, we are asked to resolve a dispute over whether the assessor for the defendant . . . must impose late filing penalties on taxpayers pursuant to General Statutes 12-63c(d), if at all, before taking and subscribing to the oath on the grand list for that assessment year pursuant to General Statutes 12-55 (b) , or may impose the penalty later. The town claims that the Appellate Court incorrectly concluded that the assessor improperly imposed late filing penalties on the plaintiffs . . . after taking and subscribing to the oath on the grand list for that assessment year. We disagree and therefore affirm the Appellate Court's judgment.")


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