Legal Definition and Related Resources of Ejectment

Meaning of Ejectment

A mixed action in which recovery of land, rents due and damages could be recovered in the same action. In strict sense, an action at law for the termination of a claim of right of possession to and recovery of possession of corporeal hereditaments. Bradshaw v Ashley, 180 U.S. 59, 21 S.Ct. 297,. In an action of ejectment, the plaintiff is required to show a present legal right to the possession of the premises as against the defendant , Staffan v Zeust, 10 App. D. C. 260; and if the plaintiff proves that on the day named he was in the actual , undisturbed and quiet possession of the premises, and the defendant thereupon entered and ousted him, the plaintiff has proof ofprima facie case, a presumption of title arises from the possession, and unless the defendant proves a better title, he will be ousted. Bradshaw v Ashley ( supra ). In England, before the passing of the common law procedure Act of 1852, an action on ejectment was a complicated one and a testimony to the ingenuity of the common law practitioners. Originally, an action in ejectment was available only to enforce possessory rights under a lease or other such chattel interest . An action for recovery of land by one entitled to the freehold was a real action and was extremely complex in procedure. In order to make an action in ejectment applicable to such actions for recovery of land, the courts permitted the plaintiff to introduce the fiction that he has leased the land to john doe who was dispossessed by the casual ejector .Richard Roe, during the currency of the lease. The action was commenced by the party claiming title delivering a declaration to the defendant in possession, stating the arrangement of the lease to John Doe and the Dispossession of John Doe by Richard Roe. Attached to this declaration was a notice to the defendant that Richard Roe had no title to the land and that if the defendant did not appear in the action Richard Roe would suffer judgment and accordingly the defendant would then be t.r.e. out of possession. The action was entitled Doe on the demise or lease, Jones v Brown or Doe d. Jones v Brown.

Ejectment Alternative Definition

(Lat. e, out of, jaeere, to throw, cast; ejieere, to cast out, to eject). In practice. A form of action by which possessory titles to corporeal hereditaments may be tried and possession obtained. A form of action which lies to regain the possession of real property, with damages for the unlawful detention. In its origin, this action was an action of trespass which lay for a tenant for years, to recover damages against a person who had ousted him of his possession without right. To the judgment for damages, the courts soon added a judgment for possession, upon which the plaintiff became entitled to a writ of possession. As the disadvantages of real actions as a means of recovering lands for the benefit of the real owner from the possession of one who held them without title became a serious obstacle to their use, this form of action was taken advantage of by BoUe, C. J., to accomplish the same result. In the original action, the plaintiff had been obliged to prove a lease from the person shown to have title, an entry under the lease, and an ouster by some third person. The modified action as sanctioned by RoUe was brought by a fictitious person as lessee against another fictitious person (the casual ejector) alleged to have committed the ouster. Service was made upon the tenant in possession, with a notice annexed from the casual ejector to appear and defend. If the tenant failed to do this, judgment was given by default, and the claimant put in possession. If he did appear, he was allowed to defend only by entering into the consent rule, by which he confessed the fictitious lease, entry, and ouster to have been made, leaving only the title in question. The tenant, by a subsequent statute, was obliged, under heavy penalties, to give notice to his lessor of the pendency of the action. The action has been superseded in England by a form prescribed by the common law procedure act (1852, §§ 170-220), and has been materially modified in many of the states of the United States, though still retaining the name; but is retained in its original form in others, and in the United States courts for those states in which it existed when the circuit courts were organized. In some of the United States it has never been in use. See 3 Sharswood, Bl. Comm. 198-207; 1 Washb. Real Prop. (4th Ed.) 433.

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Mentioned in these terms

Consent-rule, John Doe.


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Concept of Ejectment in the context of Real Property

A short definition of Ejectment: Most commonly, a court action to recover real property, usually by eviction of a tenant. In some states, an action to enforce specific performance.

Concept of Ejectment in the context of Real Property

A short definition of Ejectment: Most commonly, a court action to recover real property, usually by eviction of a tenant. In some states, an action to enforce specific performance.


Meaning of Ejectment


See Also

  • Action of Ejectment

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