Adverse Possession in Connecticut


By Philip C. Pires

Adverse possession is a legal principle that allows someone who has used and occupied another person's land for a certain period of time to potentially become the legal owner of that property.

To establish adverse possession in Connecticut, several elements must be met. The person claiming adverse possession must show that their use of the land has been open, notorious, continuous, exclusive, adverse, and under a claim of right for a minimum of 15 years. Open and notorious means that the use of the land is visible and obvious to others, and that the true owner of the land should have been aware of the use. Continuous means that the use has been ongoing for the entire 15-year period without interruption or abandonment. Exclusive means that the person claiming adverse possession has used the land to the exclusion of others, including the true owner. Adverse means that the use was not with the permission or consent of the true owner.  “Under a claim of right” means that the person claiming adverse possession used the property claiming to own the property.

If all these elements are met, the person claiming adverse possession may be able to file a lawsuit to quiet title, which is a legal action that seeks to have the court declare the claimant as the legal owner of the land. However, it is important to note that adverse possession cases can be complicated and fact-specific, and any case outcome will depend on the unique circumstances and evidence presented.  In addition, to prevail in an adverse possession claim, the claimant must establish each element by “clear and positive proof,” which is a higher burden of proof than in a typical civil case.

If you are considering pursuing an adverse possession claim, it is crucial to seek the advice of an experienced lawyer who can evaluate your situation and provide guidance on the best course of action. A skilled attorney can assist with gathering evidence, negotiating with the true owner of the land after the lawsuit is filed, and advocating for your rights in court.

If you are defending against an adverse possession claim, obtaining experienced counsel to protect your rights is equally important.  For example, you may have the ability to stop the adverse possession claim from accruing if you record a notice that you dispute the claim on the land records under Conn. Gen. Stat. § 52-575.

Our law firm’s attorneys have extensive experience representing clients in adverse possession cases throughout Connecticut. We understand the complexities of this area of law and are committed to providing our clients with personalized and effective legal representation. Contact us today to schedule a consultation and learn more about how we can help you with your adverse possession claim.


Jump to Page

By using this site, you agree to our updated Terms of Use