Lot line dispute decided by soil

Law of the Land

In 2006, Michael Roehrs purchased a parcel of farmland, bordered by one other farm to the north and two to the west. Fencing separated Roehrs’ property only from one of his western neighbors; there was no fence separating Roehrs’ parcel from the other western neighbor or the northern neighbor. Where there was no fence, the properties were demarcated only by the line where the parties each stopped plowing. This plow line was clearly visible because the parties grew different crops on their respective farms.

Prior to the purchase, Roehrs had the parcel surveyed and discovered that his two neighbors to the west had been farming on portions of his acreage, as demonstrated by the plow lines. After the purchase, Roehrs sued the neighbors for trespass.