ORS 12.050¹
Action to recover real property

An action for the recovery of real property, or for the recovery of the possession thereof, shall be commenced within 10 years. No action shall be maintained for such recovery unless it appear that the plaintiff, an ancestor, predecessor, or grantor was seized or possessed of the premises in question within 10 years before the commencement of the action.

Notes of Decisions

Applica­tion to Public Property

Statute of limita­tions could not properly be asserted against state's cause of ac­tion in eject­ment. State ex rel Highway Division v. Rosanbalm, 31 Or App 717, 571 P2d 537 (1977), Sup Ct review denied

Necessity for Possession

Adverse claimant must es­tab­lish occupa­tion or use of land that would be made by owner of same type of land, taking into account uses for which land was suitable. Almond v. Anderegg, 276 Or 1041, 557 P2d 220 (1976); Lee v. Hansen, 282 Or 371, 578 P2d 784 (1978)

In determining whether party has shown sufficient occupancy and use to es­tab­lish title by adverse pos­ses­sion, use for which land is suitable should be taken into account. Hopkins v. State of Oregon, 96 Or App 717, 773 P2d 825 (1989)

Exclusiveness of Possession

Where adverse claimant built roadway across land, used roadway for passage and planted crops on bordering piece of land, activities of adverse claimant es­tab­lished exclusive pos­ses­sion of roadway and bordering piece of land. Almond v. Anderegg, 276 Or 1041, 557 P2d 220 (1976)

Where adverse claimants had built clothes­line and maintained strip of land under it, exclusive use require­ment was satisfied, even though claimants allowed neighbors to use clothes­line with permission. Russell v. Gullett, 285 Or 63, 589 P2d 729 (1979)

Because occupant used strip of land between suburban lots consistent with typical suburban owner, occupant exclusively possessed strip of land. Schoeller v. Kulawiak, 118 Or App 524, 848 P2d 619 (1993), Sup Ct review denied

Hostile Character of Possession

Where pos­ses­sion under belief of ownership was based on pure mis­take, hostility ele­ment was satisfied. Lee v. Hansen, 282 Or 371, 578 P2d 784 (1978)

Plaintiff acted under claim of right for requisite period where he used disputed parcels for agricultural produc­tion and knowledge that others paid the taxes on the land did not defeat his claim. Garrett v. Lundgren, 41 Or App 23, 596 P2d 1318 (1979), Sup Ct review denied

Knowledge that record owner was paying taxes on parcel is evidence that adverse possessor used prop­erty furtively or with permission. White v. Chandler, 52 Or App 951, 630 P2d 372 (1981)

Use of area in manner that exceeded ease­ment right in prop­erty meant use was not permissive. Schoeller v. Kulawiak, 118 Or App 524, 848 P2d 619 (1993), Sup Ct review denied

Open and Notorious Character of Possession

Where plaintiffs made no at­tempt to clear brush from disputed parcel and made few plantings to fill in gaps in "privacy screen" but otherwise never entered parcel, there was no evidence to support finding that their use of parcel as privacy screen was open and notorious for re­quired period. Corson v. Williford, 44 Or App 145, 605 P2d 1194 (1980)

Mere existence of overgrown founda­tion claimed as boundary to disputed strip of land was insufficient notice of adverse claim. Bartell v. Hollinshead, 47 Or App 145, 617 P2d 688 (1980)

Where predecessor in interest to disputed strip of land openly declared prop­erty to be his own and exclusively used land for 15-year period as average owner would by maintaining fence, cutting fallen trees and running horses and cattle on prop­erty predecessor es­tab­lished title by adverse pos­ses­sion so defendants, as successors in interest, succeeded to his interest. Braley v. Hess, 48 Or App 505, 617 P2d 308 (1980)

Where parties claiming adverse pos­ses­sion of three lots adjacent to their business proved that they had paid taxes on prop­erty for 20 years and that they had made use of various parts of prop­erty at different times over 20-year period, evidence showed that they had occupied and used prop­erty in same manner as owner of prop­erty would have done and therefore had es­tab­lished ownership by adverse pos­ses­sion. Owens v. Bartruff, 59 Or App 37, 650 P2d 155 (1982), aff'd 297 Or 610, 687 P2d 1072 (1984)

Continuity of Possession

Where adverse claimant built roadway across land, used and maintained roadway, planted crops and harvested hay from bordering piece of land for several years and record owner did not act for 28 years, adverse claimant es­tab­lished continued pos­ses­sion of roadway and bordering piece of land. Almond v. Anderegg, 276 Or 1041, 557 P2d 220 (1976)

Where the only ac­tion by defendant inconsistent with use of ease­ment was locking of one gate during deer hunting season and there was no indica­tion that use of ease­ment was limited to deer season, require­ment that adverse use be continuous was not satisfied. Abbott v. Thompson, 56 Or App 311, 641 P2d 652 (1982), Sup Ct review denied

Conclusion that ten years continued to accrue after plaintiffs filed suit and up to time interest was conveyed to defendants was erroneous applica­tion of statute of limita­tions. Evans v. Hogue, 296 Or 745, 681 P2d 1133 (1984)

Where there is evidence of intent between grantor and grantee to transfer grantor's interest in prop­erty, grantee may acquire grantor's interest, vested and complete, in those situa­tions in which grantor has adversely possessed for statutory period. Evans v. Hogue, 296 Or 745, 681 P2d 1133 (1984)

Rela­tionship of Parties

Where cotenant held land under deed purporting to convey full title, and cotenant met all require­ments of adverse pos­ses­sion, no actual notice of ouster was re­quired. Nedry v. Morgan, 284 Or 65, 584 P2d 1381 (1978)

During ad­min­is­tra­­tion period, administrator may not acquire by adverse pos­ses­sion real prop­erty pre­vi­ously belonging to decedent, without fully informing heirs of value and nature of their interest in land. Venator v. Quier, 285 Or 19, 589 P2d 731 (1979)

Effect of Adverse Possession

Where defendant's title to disputed parcel of prop­erty had matured by adverse pos­ses­sion, doctrine of rela­tion-back applied to prevent recovery for timber trespass under ORS 105.815 (When double damages are awarded for trespass). Breuer v. Covert, 47 Or App 225, 614 P2d 1169 (1980), Sup Ct review denied

Prescriptive Title to Ease­ments

Proof of adverse uses must be clear and positive. State Hwy. Comm. v. Bauman, 16 Or App 275, 517 P2d 1202 (1974), Sup Ct review denied

Where defendants could not rebut continuous, open and notorious use by showing permission to use road, use was sufficiently adverse to es­tab­lish ease­ment by prescrip­tion. Kondor v. Prose, 50 Or App 55, 622 P2d 741 (1981)

Defendants carried burden of proving adverse use when they used driveway under mis­taken belief that it was ease­ment de­scribed in their deed, did not use driveway with plaintiff's permission and did all maintenance and major repair work. Hanscam v. Sousa, 56 Or App 117, 641 P2d 86 (1982)

Presump­tion of adverseness which arose from plaintiff's continuous use of road for 10 years was rebutted where there was no evidence that plaintiff's use interfered with defendant's use of road which defendant had constructed before plaintiff's acquisi­tion of his prop­erty. Stone v. Henry Enterprises, Inc., 95 Or App 355, 768 P2d 442 (1989)


Evidence that contested strip of land had been enclosed by substantial fence for more than statutory period was insufficient to es­tab­lish adverse pos­ses­sion. Woolfolk v. Isler, 37 Or App 687, 588 P2d 632 (1978)

Where testimony of possessor of land, who had lived on land more than 10 years, did not clearly es­tab­lish when he began to assert an adverse claim, no title by adverse pos­ses­sion was es­tab­lished. McCall v. Hyde, 39 Or App 531, 592 P2d 1064 (1979)

Proof of use of por­tion of disputed strip as garden was not sufficiently clear and convincing so as to es­tab­lish continuity of adverse use. Bartell v. Hollinshead, 47 Or App 145, 617 P2d 688 (1980)

Law Review Cita­tions

4 EL 391 (1974)

Chapter 12

Notes of Decisions

An ac­tion for per­sonal injuries caused by breach of implied warranty is clearly one for which "different limita­tion is prescribed by statute" under ORS 12.010 (Time of commencing actions) and thus is not governed by pro­vi­sions of this chapter. Redfield v. Mead, Johnson & Co., 266 Or 273, 512 P2d 776 (1973)

1 Legislative Counsel Committee, CHAPTER 12—Limitations of Actions and Suits, https://­www.­oregonlegislature.­gov/­bills_laws/­ors/­012.­html (2007) (last ac­cessed Feb. 12, 2009).
2 Legislative Counsel Committee, Annotations to the Oregon Revised Stat­utes, Cumulative Supplement - 2007, Chapter 12, https://­www.­oregonlegislature.­gov/­bills_laws/­ors/­012ano.­htm (2007) (last ac­cessed Feb. 12, 2009).
3 OregonLaws.org assembles these lists by analyzing references between Sections. Each listed item refers back to the current Section in its own text. The result reveals relationships in the code that may not have otherwise been apparent.
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