PART I: MAIN THEMES OF PROPERTY LAW
I. Definition of PROPERTY- Rights and relationships between people and state with respect to valued resources, often (but not only) land and material objects.
a. Real Property: refers to property relations concerning land and structures on land; buildings
b. Personal Property: legal relations concerning movable property such as cars, stocks, bonds, jobs, etc.
II. The bundle of rights associated with owning property
a. Possess and own
b. Exclude and include
c. Dispose of and transfer
e. Enjoying the fruits and profits
f. Destroy or waste
g. Immunity from acts by others
h. Possession… physical control over an item
III. Possession: Physical control over an item with the possibility of excluding others [Physical act] OR the conclusion by a judge that a person has possession of an item [Legal conclusion]
IV. Ownership: Title to an object, deed to land, registration to a car, physically given an object
V. Ways to acquire property
b. Not by Purchase
1. First in possession = “original”
2. Subsequent possession
2. Adverse Possession
Rebecca French’s ways to think about….
The different interactions involved with property
Case Argument Rationales
Precedents can be changed
Facts can be changed
Laws of Jurisdiction
Relationships can be changed
Change in social context
Is it valuable?
Change in sequence of actions
Economic Reasoning; Efficiency. Risk Allocation
Change in available procedure
s case and the idea of discovery are really about power; US would follow European/Christian rule, “that discovery gave title to the government by whose subjects, or by whose authority, it was made, against all other European governments, which title might be consummated by possession.
II. RULE OF CAPTURE: The first person in time to capture, maim, mortally wound, trap, or gain physical control is the possessor
a. Law of Wild Animals; “Ferae Naturae”- An individual does not acquire any rights until the wild animal has been trapped or mortally wounded; possession means physical control with the intent to exclude others
Pierson v. Post
Facts: Pierson took Post’s fox at the last minute, even though he knew that Post was pursuing it.
Holding: Pierson’s mere pursuit of the fox did not give him a right to/property in the fox.
RULE: Trapping or mortally wounding results in actual possession of a wild animal. Possession means physical control or dominion with the intent to exclude others; Pursuit alone is not enough.
Ghen v. Rich- LOCAL BUSINESS CUSTOM IS EXCEPTION TO RULE OF CAPTURE