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

               I.      Personal Property
a.      What is property?
                                                              i.      A bundle of rights
1.      Right to use (enjoy)
2.      Right to exclude
3.      Right to transfer(gift, sale, devise(willing something), descent (passing down to the next generation))
4.      Usufruct-Right to own the fruits created by the property
                                                            ii.      Justifications for private property
1.      Natural rights theory-ownership is an inherent human right
2.      Occupation-first in time, first in right
3.      Labor theory-Locke-mixing labor confers a right to own
4.      Utilitarian-private ownership maximizes social welfare
b.      Acquisition by Discovery
                                                              i.      Normal rule: Whoever captures (possesses) resources first is entitled to those resources.
                                                            ii.      Rule for discovery of America: All land titles derived from sovereignty. Because of this, the Indians could not possess the land and the English, therefore, were the first to possess America. Hence, when America won the Revolutionary War, the English passed title to all America. The Indians didn’t own it, they just occupied their land. So since the title was in the US’s hands, only they were free to sell, give American land away. M’Intosh
c.      Acquisition by Capture
                                                              i.      Dominion leads to possession, possession leads to ownership
                                                            ii.      If wild animals (ferae naturae) are captured, they belong to the captor. But actual capture is required, mere pursuit not enough. If an animal has been mortally wounded, it is considered captured. Pierson
                                                          iii.      Reasons for this:
1.      Fosters competition
2.      Creates a bright line rule to determine the owner
                                                           iv.      This rule doesn’t work as well now because it encourages overhunting
                                                             v.      Ratione soli: Wild animals are ferae naturae, but if situated on owned land, the land owner has the exclusive right to hunt them
                                                           vi.      Sometimes custom dictates a different result Ghen
                                                         vii.      A person who does not want to actually capture an animal cannot interfere with an attempt at capture Keeble
                                                       viii.      Fugitive resources
1.      Caves: Whoever’s land the entrance lies on, owns the entrance; whoever owns the land above the cave, owns that part of the cave
a.      Giving ownership to the owner of the entrance would be more efficient
2.      Oil and Gas
a.      Whoever captures it first gets it
d.      Acquisition by Creation
                                                              i.      General rule: A person acquires property by creating it

    The right to exclude is fundamental (even when inefficient) except to serve the public good Steenburg Homes
2.      Cannot exclude government workers from providing aid to workers on your land Shack
e.      Acquisition by Find
                                                              i.      General rule: The finder has superior title to the whole world except for the true owner Armory
                                                            ii.      A prior possessor prevails against a subsequent possessor.
1.      Reinforces the belief that the law is just
2.      Protecting the finder rewards honesty
3.      Protecting the finder rewards labor in returning a useful item to society
                                                          iii.      Trover: a common law action for money damages for the conversion of personal property
                                                           iv.      Replevin: a lawsuit to obtain the return of goods, not damages
                                                             v.      The law of prior possession is explicitly invoked only in support of honest claimants
                                                           vi.      Finder prevails against a landowner who never took possession of the property Hannah