Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Adams v. Cleveland-Cliffs Iron Co. case brief

Adams v. Cleveland-Cliffs Iron Co. case brief summary
602 N.W.2d 215 (1999)

CASE SYNOPSIS
Appellants sought review from a judgment entered by the Marquette Circuit Court (Michigan) that awarded damages in trespass for invasions of plaintiffs' property by intrusions of dust, noise, and vibrations that emanated from an iron mine.

CASE FACTS
Appellants sought review from a judgment entered by the circuit court after a jury verdict awarded damages in trespass for invasions of plaintiffs' property by intrusions of dust, noise, and vibrations that emanated from an iron mine. On appeal, the court reversed and remanded.

ISSUE
The issue on appeal was whether Michigan recognized a cause of action in trespass stemming from invasions of these intangible agents.

DISCUSSION

  • No published decision of an appellate court of this state was directly on point. 
  • The traditional view of trespass required a direct entry onto the land by a tangible object. 
  • The court reaffirmed for Michigan the traditional requirements for a cause of action in trespass, and held that the law of trespass in Michigan did not cover airborne particulate, noise, or vibrations, and that a complaint alleging damages resulting from these irritants normally sound instead in nuisance.
CONCLUSION
Judgment reversed and remanded. Law of trespass in Michigan does not cover airborne particulate, noise, or vibrations; complaint alleging damages resulting from these irritants normally sound instead in nuisance.

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