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Property I
University of Toledo School of Law
Kennedy, Bruce M.

Kennedy
Property I
Fall 2015
 
I.             Introduction Into Private Property
 
                A.            Rights of Property Owners
                                1.             Right to Transfer
                                                a.             By sale, gift, will, or upon death to the next of kin
                                2.             Right to Exclude
                                                a.             Right to keep others from using personal property
                                3.             Right to Use
                                                a.             Right to own the fruits created by property (usufruct)
                                4.             Right to Just Compensation
                                                a.             If taken by the State for use
 
                B.            Right of Publicity
                                1.             Only exists for celebrities
                                2.             Right of Privacy
                                                a. Ordinary citizen
                                3.             If person exploited persona for gain, gives celebrity right of publicity
                                4.             Common Law
                                                a. D uses P’s identity
                                                b. Appropriation of name or likeness to D’s advantage
                                                c. Without P’s consent
                                                d. P has injury
                                5.             Statutory
                                                a. D knowingly uses P’s name, voice, signature, photo or likeness
                                                b. For advertising or selling product/service
                                                c. Without P’s prior consent
                                                d. D is liable for damages to injured Plaintiff
 
                C.            Possession
                                1.             Elements
                                                a.             Physical Control
                                                b.             Intent to assume dominion
                                2.             Exception – Constructive Possession
                                                a.             Law treats you as if youre in possession even if youre actually unaware of it
 
II.            Acquisition of Property
 
                A.            Who has right of possession?
1.             Paramount title trumps all
2.             Possessory title: 2nd in line
3.             Go in order of finder TO, 1st finder, 2nd finder, etc.
4.             Mere custody is underneath both, but above someone who don’t really have right to title
a.             Thieves
 
                B.            Acquisition by Discovery
                                1.             The sighting or finding of unknown or uncharted territory
                                2.             Frequently accompanied by a landing and symbolic taking of possession
                                3.             Johnson v. M’Intosh
                                                a.             One can acquire interest in land through discovery
                                                b.             Applies only to sovereigns, not private parties
c.             ONE CANNOT PASS BETTER INTEREST IN PROPERTYY THAN ONE ORIGINALLY HAS
                                4.             Personal Property can be abandoned if:
                                                a.             Owner intends to relinquish the right AND
                                                b.             Intent is evidenced by some act
                                5.             A person cannot abandon land
 
                C.            Acquisition by Creation
                                1.             News of current events can be regarded as common property
                                                a. Fresh news is “quasi” property
i: Quasi Property: Has some attributes of property but not really property
                                2.             A man’s property is limited to the chattels that embody his invention
                                                a.             Others can imitate
b.             Property rights can be patented or copyrighted by statute, but not created by common law
 
                D.            Finders of Property
                                1.             Hierarchy of title:
                                                a.             True Owner has paramount title.
b.             Finder has possessory (limited title), which is good against the world except the true owner.
                                2.             Owner is somewhere in the picture, but don’t know who it is
3.             Common Law
If you find lost property and know who the True Owner is and just keeps the property, then they are a thief.
                                4.             Finder status
                                                a.             Discover the goods
                                                b.             Intend to take the goods
                                                c.             Effectively take them into possession
                                5.             Acquisition by Find
                                                a.             General rule
i:              The rule of prior possessor prevails over a subsequent possessor
                                                                                –               Do NOT lose right when you lost the object
6.             Locus in Quo
a.             Locus owner is the owner of the container/place where the property was found                   b.             If the court gives property to Locus owner rather than the finder, the
True Owner has better chance of finding the property because they will retrace their steps back to the Locus owner
c.             Mislaid property
                                                                i:              Always goes to the owner of locus en quo (place where the lost
property is found)
 
                E.            Lost Property
                                1.             Property that is unintentionally left
                                2.             Armory (Default Rule)
                                                a.             Finder of lost object has full legal title on everyone EXCEPT True Owner
                                3.             Finder v. Landowner (Public Area)
                                                a.             Property goes to finder because in public area
               

n also be created in case of Gifts in Causa Mortis when person DOES NOT die of the peril
 
H.            Non-bailments
1.             Sales
a.             Because there is shift in title
2.             Gifts
a.             Shift in title
3.             Leases
a.             In typical lease, Lessee obtains some ownership interest and Lessor has no right to possess property
 
I.             What is contained in Bailment?
1.             Principle
a.             What Bailee actually knows or could reasonably foresee or what Bailee has notice of are all included within bailment
2.             Mistake of value does not matter and is not a defense
 
                J.             Within Scope of Bailment
                                1.             Things within plain view
                                2.             Reasonably foreseeable items
                                3.             What Bailee has been told
4.             If mistake of value, it is within scope of Bailment and Bailee liable for full value of chattel
 
K.            Duties of Bailee
1.             Protect
a.             Calibrated based on who benefits from bailment. 
b.             Bailor benefits
i: Must show D had Gross negligence;
c.             Mutual benefits
i: Must show D had Ordinary negligence
d.             Bailee benefits
i: Must show D had Slight negligence
ii: Duty, Breach, factual cause, proximate cause, damages
2.             Redeliver
a.             Voluntary
i: Strict Liability
b.             Involuntary
i: Negligence
 
L.            Analyzing Bailment Problem
1.             Does bailment exist?
a.             Are elements met?
2. If so, is chattel within scope of the bailment?
3. If so, which bailee duty is at issue? 
a.             Duty to protect and/or duty to deliver? 
i: Argue both if possible
4a.          If duty to protect
a.             look at what standard
4b. If duty to redeliver
a.             Look as to which standard to apply
 
IV.          Right to Transfer Property
 
A.            Derivitive Title
1.             Ordinarily, one cannot pass better title than one actually has
2.             If A has good title, and A gives title to B, then B has good title.  If not, then B does not.
 
B.            Original Title
1.             First title
2.             Whoever discovered property and claimed it, has original title
3.             Original owner of a piece of property has original good title
 
C.            Right of Occupancy
1.             Not ownership
2.             Not same as possession
3.             Allows occupants to be protected from other people, but not government
4.             Government can take away occupancy either expressly or impliedly at any time