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Eagles Five, LLC v. Lawton

Summarized by: 

Date Filed: 06-13-2012
Case #: A142394
Sercome, J. for the Court; Ortega, P.J.; and Brewer, J.
Full Text Opinion: http://www.publications.ojd.state.or.us/Publications/A142394.pdf

Property Law: Injunctive relief is only an appropriate remedy when a party will experience immediate or irreparable harm without it, and it is not appropriate for future contingencies.

Lawton appealed and Eagles Five (Eagles) cross-appealed. Lawton collects water from two springs on its property. That water is channeled through a pipe across Eagles' property to a pump house once again on Lawton's property. Eagles had an easement to collect water from that pump house, but installed a valve on the pipe diverting all the water before it reached the pump house. Lawton, in response, capped the pipe. Eagles sued for access to the water, and Lawton counter-claimed to have the valve removed. The trial court found that the easement did not allow Eagles access to the water before, but nonetheless enjoined Lawton from interfering with access to the pump house in the future. The Court of Appeals found that remedy inappropriate because injunctions are only appropriate to prevent immediate or irreperable harm. The Court also found that the agreement creating the easement granted attorney fees to the prevailing party, and the trial court erred in not awarding fees. Affirmed in part, reversed and remanded in part; affirmed on cross-appeal.