Case Name: Romero v. Garcia
Plaintiff/Appellee: Ida Romero
Defendant/Appellant: Mr. and Mrs. Antonio Garcia (former father/mother-in-law of Romero)
Citation: 546 P.2d 66 (N.M. 1976)
Issue: Whether the plaintiff could claim the land under adverse possession when the deed failed to describe a specific piece of property.
1947 – Plaintiff purchased the 13 acres in dispute from defendant father but defendant mother failed to join in the conveyance. (The 13 acres were part of the 165 acres that defendant father had purchased in 1923).
A home was built on the land and the deed was recorded in 1950. The plaintiff and deceased husband lived in the home until 1962, when he died, and the plaintiff moved out to Colorado and remarried.
The defendants argued that:
The void deed was inadequate for color of title. This is erroneous because a deed is sufficient for color of even though it is void because it lacks the signature of a community member.
The deed’s description was inadequate for adverse possession because it failed to describe a specific piece of property. A deed is not void for want of proper description if, with the deed and with extrinsic evidence on the ground, a surveyor can ascertain the boundaries. An indefinite and uncertain description may be clarified by subsequent acts of the parties
Procedural History: The court found for the plaintiff.
Holding: The subsequent acts of the parties in erecting a house and pointing to the land were sufficient to ascertain the boundaries.