REVISED JUDICATURE ACT OF 1961 (EXCERPT)
Act 236 of 1961
600.2919 Damage or waste to land; damages; injunction; contempt.
(1) Any person who:
(a) cuts down or carries off any wood, underwood, trees, or timber or despoils or injures any trees on another's lands, or
(b) digs up or carries away stone, ore, gravel, clay, sand, turf, or mould or any root, fruit, or plant from another's lands, or
(c) cuts down or carries away any grass, hay, or any kind of grain from another's lands without the permission of the owner of the lands, or on the lands or commons of any city, township, village, or other public corporation without license to do so, is liable to the owner of the land or the public corporation for 3 times the amount of actual damages. If upon the trial of an action under this provision or any other action for trespass on lands it appears that the trespass was casual and involuntary, or that the defendant had probable cause to believe that the land on which the trespass was committed was his own, or that the wood, trees, or timber taken were taken for the purpose of making or repairing any public road or bridge judgment shall be given for the amount of single damages only.
(2)(a) Any guardian, tenant in dower, life tenant, or tenant for years who commits or suffers any waste, during his term or estate, to the lands, tenements or hereditaments, without having a lawful license to do so, is liable for double the amount of actual damages. Any joint tenant or tenant in common who commits or suffers waste of the lands, tenements, or hereditaments held in joint tenancy, without having a lawful license in writing to do so, is liable for double the amount of actual damages at the suit of his cotenant.
(b) A claim under this provision may be brought by the person having the next immediate estate, in fee, for life, or for years or by any person who has the remainder or reversion in fee or for life after an intervening estate for life or for years; and each of the parties shall recover damages according to his estate in the premises. A joint tenant or tenant in common may bring the claim in case of waste by one of his joint tenants or tenants in common. An heir, whether of full age or not, after coming into possession of his inheritance, may maintain a claim for waste done in the time of his ancestor as well as in his own time, unless recovery has been had by the executor or administrator of the ancestor. A tenant who assigns his full interest is not liable for waste done or suffered by his assignees while he remains out of possession of the premises.
(3)(a) The circuit court shall grant injunctions to stay and prevent threatened trespass when the remedies provided by subsection (1), above, are not fully adequate and in any case where the trespass is of a continuing nature.
(b) In any case where there is not a plain, adequate, and complete remedy provided for waste by subsection (2), above, or where waste is threatened the circuit court may grant injunctions to stay and prevent waste.
(c) Having taken jurisdiction of the case the circuit court may at the same time dispose of all questions involved, including the assessing and awarding of money damages.
(4) After the commencement of any action based on a claim for damages for waste, or for the recovery of land, or for the possession of land the defendant shall not make any waste of the land in demand or premises in question during the pendency of the action. If the defendant commits, threatens to commit, or makes preparations to commit waste the court in which the action is pending or any circuit judge or circuit court commissioner may make, on the application of the plaintiff, an order restraining the defendant from the commission of any waste or further waste of the land in demand or premises in question. Any person violating the terms of any such order is guilty of a contempt of the court in which the action is pending, which is punishable as other cases of contempt.
(5) If any person commits, threatens to commit, or makes preparations to commit any waste on real estate which has been attached or levied upon by execution in any civil action, the court from which the execution or attachment issued or any circuit judge or circuit court commissioner may make, on the application of the plaintiff, an order restraining the person from committing any waste or further waste on the land which has been attached or levied upon. Any person who shall violate the terms of any such order is guilty of contempt of the court in which the action is pending and is punishable as in other cases of contempt.
(6)(a) If, at any time after the sale of real estate on execution and before a deed is executed in pursuance of the sale, the defendant in the execution or any other person commits waste on the real estate or removes from it any buildings, fences, or other fixtures belonging to the land which would pass to the grantee by a deed of conveyance of the land, the purchaser at the sale or any person who has acquired his rights may have and maintain, against the person doing the injury and against any other person who has the buildings, fences, or fixtures in his possession after their removal, the same actions which the absolute owner of the premises would be entitled to.
(b) Whenever any lands or tenements are sold by virtue of an execution issued upon any judgment, the person to whom the conveyance is executed by the sheriff pursuant to the sale has a claim for damages for any waste committed on the premises by any person after the sale.
(c) Any person entitled to the possession of lands or tenements sold under execution may use and enjoy the premises until the period of redemption has run in the following ways without being guilty of waste:
(i) He may in all cases use and enjoy the premises sold in the same manner and for the same purposes in and for which they were used and enjoyed prior to the sale, doing no permanent injury to the freehold;
(ii) If the premises sold were buildings or other erections he may make necessary repairs to them although he shall not make alterations in the form or structure of them;
(iii) If the premises sold were land, he may use and improve the land in the ordinary course of husbandry, but he shall not be entitled to any crops growing on the premises at the expiration of the period of redemption;
(iv) He may apply any wood or timber on the land to the necessary repair of any fences, buildings, or erections which were on the premises at the time of sale;
(v) If he is in actual occupation of the land sold he may take necessary firewood from the land for the use of his family.
History: 1961, Act 236, Eff. Jan. 1, 1963
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