Adverse possession and tacking

Adverse possession

Adverse possession and tacking

We previously wrote here about the elements of an adverse possession claim. In this post, we discuss the concept of “tacking”.

The ten year requirement.

As we previously wrote, the doctrine of “adverse possession” refers to the ability acquire legal ownership of land belonging to someone else by simply using that land for at least 10 years.

What happens if you acquired the land from someone who adversely possessed it for 6 years, and then you did so for another 4 years? That is where the concept of tacking comes into play.

The term “tacking” refers to the ability of successive landowners to combine the time of their adverse possession so that the last owner can meet the 10 year requirement.

In order that one adverse possession may be tacked to another, there must exist privity of possession between the successive individuals.

As a general rule, such privity may be created by any conveyance, agreement, or understanding, that has for its object the transfer of possession of the land and is accompanied by a transfer in fact.” Walters v. Rogers, 222 Miss. 182, 75 So.2d 461 (1954).

According to an 1856 Mississippi Supreme Court decision, privity would exist with respect to land acquired by an heir following the death of the person who had been adversely possessing the land.

Also, the adverse possession must be continuous.

“While this Court does recognize tacking of an adverse possession claim from one owner to the next in order to meet the necessary ten year period, this Court has never found that a claim of adverse possession may skip over several preceding owners who had possession or use by permission.” Gillespie v. Kelly, 809 So.2d 702, 707 (Miss. Ct. App. 2002), citing Rutland v. Stewart, 630 So.2d 996, 999 (Miss. 1994).

If you have a question about adverse possession, give us a call.

Panter Law Firm, PLLC, 7736 Old Canton Road, Suite B, Madison, MS 39110