Phoenix Pinelands Corp. v. Davidoff

Thankfully, we can read judicial opinions online. If opinions were issued in paper, the New Jersey Appellate Division would have had to cut down the entire Pinelands for the 175-page opus of Phoenix Pinelands Corp. v. Davidoff. This case started as a quiet title action in the Chancery Division. In short, the Phoenix Pinelands Corp. engaged in a decades-long campaign to cloud title to the State’s land in the Pinelands by spending millions of dollars on surveyors, lawyers, and fractional interests in property on the outskirts of the 250-acres it sought to acquire. Eventually, the company filed a quiet title action, which the Chancery Court granted. As the opinion’s length indicates, the equitable factors at play were complex. The Appellate Division reversed the lower court’s ruling and held that the company’s “surreptitious two-decade-long quest to undermine and cloud the State’s title to those Properties and establish its own competing chains of title, erasing the State’s parcels from the municipal tax map in the process, anathema to the principles undergirding New Jersey’s land title laws.”

Phoenix