What is Adverse Possession?

Adverse possession is a legal principle by which an individual who is not the legal owner of land can become the legal owner by being in possession of the land for the requisite period of time. Adverse possession is often referred to as “squatters rights”, and the concept of it has been the subject of controversy, however, as explained below, it is not as simple as possessing the land; certain conditions need to be met before adverse possession can be successfully claimed.  

Stephen Baker
Partner, Head of Dispute Resolution
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This reflects the law and market position at the date of publication and is written as a general guide. It does not contain definitive legal advice, which should be sought in relation to a specific matter.

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