Select Page

Property I
University of Pennsylvania School of Law
Pritchett, Wendell

Table of Contents
I.    What is Property? 8
Sticks in the bundle of property rights:8
Institutions that Regulate Property 8
Locke – Labor 8
Radin – Personhood 9
Rawls – Distributive justice 9
James Wilson – Anti-Rawls 9
Utilitarianism   9
Posner – Utilitarian 10
Hardin – Tragedy of the Commons 10
Other forms of resource allocation 10
II. Acquisition of Property   11
Acquisition of Land and Chattels 11
Water Rights 12
Natural vs Artificial Needs 12
Prior Appropriation 12
Adverse Possession 12
III.     Estates in Land   13
Waste 13
Present Interests 14
Future Interests 15
IV.Concurrent Interests 16
Marital Property 18
V. Limitations on Use   20
Blackstone 20
Theoretical approaches to dealing with externalities 20
Ronald Coase – utilitarian economist 20
Calabresi and Melamed 21
Nuisance 22
Trespass 23
Social Norms as Property Institutions 24
Limitations on the Rights of Property Owners 25
Eminent Domain 26
VI.Real Estate Transactions 27
Covenants of Title 30
Types of Deeds 30
Breach and Remedies for Breach:30
Foreclosure of Security Interests 31
VII.    Landlord Tenant Law    33
Evolution and Obligations 33
Kinds of Leases:33
Landlord’s Rights and Remedies 34
Tenants Rights and Obligations 35
Eviction 37
Rights Against Discrimination 38
VIII. Servitude Law    38
Easements 39
Covenants 40
Equitable Servitudes 42
IX.Common Interest Communities 44
X. Zoning   47
Euclidean Zoning 47
Exclusionary Zoning 48
Growth Controls 50
XI.Takings 52
Exactions 52
Been:52
Regulations of Use 53
Joseph Sax, “Some Thoughts on the Decline of Private Property” 54
 
Table of Cases
 
Popov v Hayashi8
Π did not have full possession because he cannot prove he would have retained control of the ball after incidental contact. Δ obtained a ball sullied by the pre-possessory interest of Π. Both men have a claim to the ball.8
International News Service v Associated Press 10
Δ’s use of Π’s news in the same time frame without contributing to the cost of producing is unfair competition in business. News can be quasi property.10
Johnson and Graham’s Lessee v M’Intosh 11
‘The exclusive right to purchase from the Indians resides in the government; title granted to individuals by Indian tribes is invalid.’ This is not an issue of abstract moral justice but of rules which our government has adopted.11
Pierson v Post11
Pursuit of a wild animal does not create a property right.11
Evans v Merriweather 12
Everyone has a partial right to water. There is a distinction between use for natural and artificial needs.12
Coffin v The Left Hand Ditch Co.12
“In the absence of express statutes to the contrary, the first appropriator of water from a natural stream for a beneficial purpose has a prior right thereto, to the extent of such appropriation.” 12
Mannillo v Gorski13
The act of entry or possession asserts title and is of the requisite hostile nature for adverse possession. Minor encroachments along a common boundary, even if visible, may not be open and notorious.13
Brokaw v Fairchild 13
The life tenant does not have ownership rights; any alteration of the buildings would constitute waste even if it makes the property more valuable.13
Melms v Pabst Brewing 14
Changed circumstances allowed elimination of a residential building because the property had become valueless for residential – all the surrounding area had been transformed to commercial and industrial14
People v Nogarr 16
If mortgage (in a jurisdiction) is not a transfer of title, a mortgage by one tenant does not severe joint tenancy, and the lender’s interest survives only as long as that of the lendee.16
Delfino v Vealencis 17
A court can only order partition by sale if it is in the best interests of all the parties; a home or business owned by one party should be taken into account. There is a preference for physical division.17
In re the Marriage of Graham    18
An academic degree is not marital property that can be divided upon dissolution of the marriage.18
O’Brien v O’Brien 18
A license earned during the marriage represents increased earning power; this is marital property of which the non-licensed spouse is entitled to a portion.19
Waschak v Moffat22
Δ’s use of its land was reasonable and the damage caused to Π’s property was unintentional; therefore, Δ is not liable. Πs were aware of Δ when they purchased their property.22
Boomer v Atlantic Cement Co.23
If the cost of eliminating the nuisance is too great, a Π can receive permanent damages instead.23
Pile v Pedrick 23
Δs have no right to have their property on the Π’s land; they must remove it even though it protrudes less than 2 inches.23
Geragosian v Union Realty Co.24
An owner can only be deprived of his property in extreme circumstances; the drain and fire escape must be removed.24
Raab v Casper 24
A good faith improver who has a mistaken belief that he is the landowner can lose rights if he is negligent. Any improvements he makes after he knows he may not be the land owner are not covered by good faith improvement legislation.24
Schild v Rubin 25
“people who live in organized communities must of necessity suffer some inconvenience and annoyance from their neighbors and must submit to annoyances consequent upon the reasonable use of property by others” 25
State v Shack 25
The Δs didn’t invade any possessory right of the Π; the property rights of an employer allowing employees to reside on his property as a benefit of employment do not extend to insulating that employee from people providing services or aid.25
PruneYard Shopping Center v Robins 25
A state’s constitution that allows protestors to use the property of a private shopping mall does not violate the federal constitution.25
Berman v Parker 26
Court upheld DC’s redevelopment act. To redevelop slum lands through eminent domain 26
Hawaii Housing Authority v Midkiff26
The court has minimal authority to overrule eminent domain that a legislature has det

rio 45
Judge ruled the by-law was invalid and unenforceable because it attempted to impose a retroactive regulation 45
Laguna Royale Owners Ass’n v Darger 45
An Association can deny approval for transfer of a unit if the reasons are rationally related to the ‘protection, preservation and proper operation of the property’ and the purposes of the Association as stated in its bylaws’ and are applied in a fair and nondiscriminatory manner.45
Village of Euclid v Ambler Realty Co.47
Zoning ordinances that prohibit commercial or industrial development or limit areas to single family houses are not unconstitutional.47
Surrick v Zoning Hearing Board 49
Municipalities must provide a fair share of their land for multi-family homes. If a municipality is in the path of growth, it may not choose to zone out development.49
Willistown 50
zoning ordinances allowed multi-family homes on 80 of 11,589 acres – this was just a token and was still exclusionary 50
Fernley v Board of Supervisors of Schuylkill Twp.50
A zoning ordinance that completely prohibits multi-family dwellings is impermissibly exclusionary. A fair share analysis is inapplicable.50
Mount Laurel50
The intent of the legislature isn’t controlling; the effect of excluding low income people is. The regulations were not concerned w/ the general welfare of all persons.50
Associated Home Builders of the Greater Eastbay, Inc., v City of Livermore 50
To show that an ordinance relates to the public welfare, Π must forecast the probable effect and duration of the restriction and show that it does not represent a reasonable middle ground between competing interests.50
Nollan 52
the regulation must have a central nexus with the solution 52
Dolan v City of Tigard 53
For a government to place a condition on receipt of a building permit, the condition must have an essential nexus with the state interest and a reasonable degree of connection (rough proportionality) with the projected impact of the development.53
Penn Central Transportation Co. v City of New York 53
The landmark law is substantially related to the promotion of the general welfare and doesn’t entirely prohibit development above Π’s property; therefore, it is not a taking requiring compensation.53
Lucas v South Carolina Coastal Council54
Complete elimination of the economic value of property is likely to be a taking requiring compensation.54