Personal tools
Home » Faculty & Staff » Home Page of P.J. DiBlasi » Court Decisions:

Court Decisions:

Some court decisions related to cemeteries.




KY. 1936. Equity will enjoin unwarrantable interference with burial grounds or graves therein, will protect lot from invasion by trespasser, and will command removal of bodies wrongfully buried therein.

Brunton v. Roberts, 97 S.W.D.2d 413, 265 Ky. 569, 107 A.L.R. 1289.

Where because of lack of orderliness in location of graves in country churchyard two bodies were unintentionally buried in lot belonging to another family, considerations of respect for the dead and regard for feelings of their kindred and friends held not to justify refusal of their relatives to move bodies.

Brunton v. Roberts, 97 S.W.D.2d 413, 265 Ky. 569, 107 A.L.R. 1289.

Where two bodies had been buried by mistake in cemetery lot belonging to another family, suit to compel removal of bodies held not barred by laches [sic], although about 10 years had elapsed since one burial and about 20 years since the other, since no disadvantage resulted to defendants because of such delay.

Brunton v. Roberts, 97 S.W.D.2d 413, 265 Ky. 569, 107 A.L.R. 1289.


Title and rights acquired

Ky 1952. The rights of relatives of deceased persons in ground dedicated to family burials is a mere easement and not a fee.

Haas v. Gahlinger, 248 S.W.2d 349.

Where family acquired nothing more than mere burial privilege, graveyard constituted only an easement against the land.

Haas v. Gahlinger, 248 S.W.2d 349.

Where land was conveyed to grantee in fee simple by deed which did not mention that land was to be used for graveyard, but grantee’s family did so use it, family acquired fee simple title and their election to use lot for burial purposes did not reduce their title to a mere easement.

Haas v. Gahlinger, 248 S.W.2d 349.


Interments and Descendants of cemetery

Ky. 1936. Ordinarily purchaser of cemetery lot acquires only easement or license to make interments therein exclusive of others, such right being a property right subject to reasonable regulations governing cemetery, and to control by state in exercise of its police powers.

Brunton v. Roberts, 97 S.W.D.2d 413, 265 Ky. 569, 107 A.L.R. 1289.

Cemetery lot descends to lineal descendants of owner unaffected by any devise, and right of possession, unless voluntarily relinquished, continues as long as graves are distinguishable and cemetery is used.

Brunton v. Roberts, 97 S.W.D.2d 413, 265 Ky. 569, 107 A.L.R. 1289.



Bogert, Trusts and Trustees

Library references C.J.S. Cemeteries § 3 et seq.

Care of grounds, lots, and graves.

Ky. App. 1992. The statute governing maintenance of a “cemetery” refers to places where dead persons are buried and does not include a pet cemetery. KRS 381.715(3)(b), 381.750. - Loid v. Kell, 844, S.W.2d 428, review denied.



Title and rights of owners of lots in general.

Library references C.J.S. Cemeteries § 23 et seq.

Ky. 1942. Where vendor by “repurchase certificate” delivered to purchaser simultaneously with delivery of deed to cemetery lots agreed to make annual payments to retain option on the lots and to repurchase at end of eight years for original purchase price upon written notice and provided for termination of vendor’s obligations upon transfer of lot or burial thereon, the transaction constituted an absolute “conveyance” and not a “mortgage”, but vendor did not have a mere “option” terminable at will but was obligated to make the annual payments unless lots were transferred or used for burial and to repurchase provided specified notice was given.

Resthaven Memorial Cemetery v. Jennings, 163 S.W.2d 488, 291 Ky 201.