Pete Lien & Sons, Inc. v. ZellmerAnnotate this Case
Plaintiff and Defendant claimed mineral rights to the same 280 acres of U.S. Forest Service land in Lawrence County, South Dakota. Plaintiff filed a complaint to quiet title. The circuit court granted summary judgment in favor of Plaintiff, concluding that Defendant failed to follow federal and state law regarding the proper location of placer mining claims but that Plaintiff followed all applicable laws and was therefore entitled to the mining claim. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding (1) the circuit court did not err in deciding that Defendant’s fourteen placer mineral claims on property at issue were invalid; and (2) Defendant’s invalid placer mineral claims did not preclude Plaintiff’s subsequent claims.