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Posted by: Chandra Williams on Sep 17, 2015

Court: TN Court of Appeals

Attorneys 1:

Tad K. Wintermeyer, Chattanooga, Tennessee, for the appellant, Victor P. Serodino, III.

Attorneys 2:

Daniel M. Stefaniuk and William J. Rieder, Chattanooga, Tennessee, for the appellee, Carlton C Holder.

Judge(s): MCBRAYER

This appeal arises from a dispute over an easement for a private airstrip. The original owner of the land sub-divided it into six tracts, with the plan of selling them to buyers interested in purchasing property with access to the airstrip. Three of the tracts were sold to Appellant and one was purchased by Appellee. After unsuccessful efforts to sell portions of their land holdings, the original owner and Appellant executed and recorded a purported abandonment of the easement. Upon discovering that the purchasers of the final two tracts sold by the original owner were building fences across the airstrip, Appellee brought suit seeking to assert his easement rights, among other claims. The trial court found that an express and, in the alternative, implied easement for the airstrip had been created. However, because the purchasers of the two tracts had been informed that the easement was abandoned, the court terminated the easement where it crossed those two tracts. In addition, the trial court found that the original owner and Appellant had committed the tort of libel of title in executing and recording an abandonment of easement without joining Appellee as a party to the agreement. We affirm in part, reverse in part, and remand for further proceedings.