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Property Keyed to Merrill
Warsaw v. Chicago Metallic Ceilings, Inc.
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*Case Brief Anatomy includes: Brief Prologue, Complete Case Brief, Brief Epilogue
- The Brief Prologue provides necessary case brief introductory information and includes:
- Topic: Identifies the topic of law and where this case fits within your course outline.
- Parties: Identifies the cast of characters involved in the case.
- Procedural Posture & History: Shares the case history with how lower courts have ruled on the matter.
- Case Key Terms, Acts, Doctrines, etc.: A case specific Legal Term Dictionary.
- Case Doctrines, Acts, Statutes, Amendments and Treatises: Identifies and Defines Legal Authority used in this case.
- The Case Brief is the complete case summarized and authored in the traditional Law School I.R.A.C. format. The Pro case brief includes:
- Brief Facts: A Synopsis of the Facts of the case.
- Rule of Law: Identifies the Legal Principle the Court used in deciding the case.
- Facts: What are the factual circumstances that gave rise to the civil or criminal case? What is the relationship of the Parties that are involved in the case. Review the Facts of this case here:
Warsaw (“Plaintiff”) and Chicago Metallic Ceilings, Inc. (“Defendant”) are owners of adjoining properties. Plaintiff constructed a large commercial building on its land, which comprised of a 40-foot wide driveway for truck access to the building’s loading dock. Defendant constructed a smaller building on Defendant’s property, leaving a 150-foot-wide strip next to Plaintiff’s property vacant. Due to the size, Plaintiff’s 40-foot strip was too small to permit trucks to turn and back into the loading dock without going on Defendant’s strip. Since approximately 1972 to 1979, whenever trucks and other vehicles would service on Plaintiff’s property, they would use Defendant’s strip to enter, turn, park, and exit Plaintiff’s loading dock. Twice, Plaintiff tried to obtain an easement from Defendant, but Plaintiff was unsuccessful. In 1979, Defendant planned to build a warehouse on its strip. Defendant raised a pad of earth five feet from its property line, resulting in a blockage of strip that Plaintiff would constantly use of Defendant’s property. Plaintiff brought suit against Defendant seeking an injunctive and declaratory relief. Nonetheless, the trial court denied Plaintiff’s request for a preliminary injunction, and Defendant continued to construct on the strip. Later, the trial court held that Plaintiff obtained a 25-foot-wide prescriptive easement over Defendant’s strip, ordering Defendant to remove the parts of the construction that obstructed with the easement. The trial court further reserved jurisdiction to award damges in the event that Defendant failed to comply with the trial court’s order. Defendant appealed on the grounds that Plaintiff did not have a prescriptive easement because Plaintiff’s use of the strip permissive and not hostile. Thus, the lower court was not authorized to mandate an injunction for a completed act. Further, Defendant alleged that the court was substantially harsh when it granted Plaintiff a free easement and mandated Defendant to relocate or reconstruct its building.
- Issue(s): Lists the Questions of Law that are raised by the Facts of the case.
- Holding: Shares the Court's answer to the legal questions raised in the issue.
- Concurring / Dissenting Opinions: Includes valuable concurring or dissenting opinions and their key points.
- Reasoning and Analysis: Identifies the chain of argument(s) which led the judges to rule as they did.
- The Brief Prologue closes the case brief with important forward-looking discussion and includes:
- Policy: Identifies the Policy if any that has been established by the case.
- Court Direction: Shares where the Court went from here for this case.