LAW OF PROPERTY Question and Answer

Question

In relation to the law of property, distinguish between the following terms:
i) Ownership and possession.
ii) Fee simple and leasehold.

 

Answer 

In relation to the law of property, distinguish between the following terms:

i) Ownership and possession.

Possession refers to physical detention coupled with the intention to hold the things detained as one’s own. It refers to having custody of a thing coupled with the intention to exercise exclusive control over it. Possession is the prima facie evidence of ownership.

Ownership is a matter of law and it denotes the relation between a person and the object forming the subject matter of his ownership. A person is the owner of property if he has the ultimate right over its use and disposal.

 

ii) Fee simple and leasehold.

Leasehold

This is a secondary interest in land derived from a primary interest.  This interest confers upon others subsidiary powers. The grant, with or without consideration, the proprietor of land of the right to the exclusive possession of his land, and includes the right so granted and the instrument granting it, and also includes a sub-lease but does not include an agreement for lease.

Fee simple      

This is the greatest estate in land which may be held. The interest in the estate here continues as long as the tenant or any of his heirs survives. Here, the duration of the estate is fixed to the life of the tenant and his heirs. If no heirs exist, it reverts to the state. The word ‘Fees’ denoted that the estate could be inherited while “Simple” meant and denoted those who could inherit the estate.      

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