31. Mistaken improvements to property.

31.     Mistaken improvements to property.

As with services1, the general rule is that, in the absence of request or free acceptance2 a person whose property is mistakenly improved by another is under no liability to pay for that improvement, and neither does the improver acquire any proprietary interest in the property concerned3. One general exception to this is the law of maritime salvage4. A second, minor exception may be where the true owner of the chattels claims to recover possession from the mistaken improver, and the court awards possession on condition that