Kiritsis & Associates


What is accretion when talking about real property? Kiritsis Law Group 212 922 0005

May 13, 2021

By: John Kiritsis, Esq., CPA, MBA, MS, JD, LL.M

It is the buildup of land caused by forces outside of human control, such as natural forces like water or winds. Accretions are often sources to a number of real property legal disputes. The word “accretion” may have different meanings in different contexts. When talking about real property law, it may be best to use the coastal management usage of the word “accretion” to help you visualize a fact pattern (i.e. picture a house at the edge of the lake). Accretion is often a major issue of certain types of land surveys, due to the gradual addition of soil and/or other materials by the natural process of water born sedimentation. Many legal theorists, predict that legal disputes concerning accretion, will increase if the existence of global warming and its potential consequences are to be believed. Legal disputes, involving accretions are often compounded due to the ambiguities and/or absence of insurance coverages. The best way for a property owner to deal with accretion, maybe vigilance to detect accretions as soon as possible, and alertness when preparing real estates documents and shopping for insurance.


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