Kinds of Ownership || Jurisprudence ||
The meaning, definition, and incidents of the Ownership have been discussed in our last article. Now in this article, we will discuss the kinds of Ownership under jurisprudence.
Ownership maybe of various kinds. Broadly, it may be classified under the following heads:-
(1) Vested and Contingent ownership.
(2) Sole and Co-ownership.
(3) Corporeal and Incorporeal ownership.
(4) Legal and Equitable ownership.
(5) Trust and Beneficial ownership.
(6) Absolute & Limited ownership.
Vested and Contingent Ownership:-
Ownership is either vested or contingent. It is vested when the entire events essential to vest property in the owner have happened and the owner’s title is already perfect. Thus if A sells a house to B for a price settled, the other formalities prescribed by law e.g., registration etc. are complied with, B becomes a vested owner of the house. A vested ownership does not depend upon the fulfillment of any condition but creates an immediate right through its enjoyment may be postponed to a future date, there is a transfer of property to A for life than to B, here Bs interest is vested one because B need not fulfill any condition precedent and his title is perfect, he is entitled to take possession the moment A dies.
Contingent ownership is conditional. In this, interest in the property is subjected to certain conditions or conditions. The vesting of the right in such cases depends upon the happening of such an event or fulfillment of such conditions. Thus, if the property is transferred to A for life, if B marries C, B’s interest is such that it cannot take place as soon as A dies because there is a condition which B is to fulfill viz., that he must marry A. Until B fulfills this condition is interest is contingent depending upon the fulfillment of the condition. The condition on which ownership depends may be either a condition precedent or condition subsequent. A condition precedent is one by the fulfillment of which a title is completed, a condition subsequent is one on the fulfillment of which a title already completed is extinguished.”
Corporeal and incorporeal Ownership:-
Corporeal ownership is that the ownership of a material thing and incorporeal ownership is that the ownership of a right. Ownership of a shop, land or a machine is corporeal ownership. Ownership of a patent, copyright, a trademark, right of way, etc. is incorporeal ownership. The distinction between corporeal and incorporeal ownership depends on the distinction between corporeal and incorporeal things.
Incorporeal ownership is ownership of intangible objects, which cannot be perceived and felt by the senses and which are intangible.
Incorporeal ownership includes ownership of intellectual property.
Trust and Beneficial Ownership:-
Trust ownership is an instance of duplicate ownership. Trust property is a property owned by two persons at the same time. The relation between the two owners is such one among them is under an obligation to use his ownership for the benefit of the other. The ownership is called beneficial ownership. The ownership of a trustee is nominal and not real but within the eye of the law, the trustee represents his beneficiary.
Legal and Equitable Ownership:-
This classification of ownership is recognized in England. This difference between the two of the ownerships has its origin in the rules of common law and equity.
Originally legal ownership is that which had its origin in the rules of common law and equitable ownership is that which resulted from the rules of equity. In many cases, equity recognizes ownership where the law does not recognize ownership owing to some legal defect.
There is no distinction between legal and equitable estates in India. Under the Indian Trusts Act, a trustee is the legal owner of the trust property itself. However, he has the right against the trustees to force them to carry out the provisions of the trust.
Sole Ownership and Co-ownership:-
Ownership may be either sole or duplicate. When it is exclusively vested in one person it is called sole ownership. When it is jointly held by two or more persons at the same time, it is called duplicate or co-ownership.
The chief instances of duplicate ownership are;
ii) Trust and beneficial ownership;
iii) Legal and equitable ownership;
iv) Vested and contingent ownership.
Co-ownership that is to say, ownership shared by several persons with equal or co-ordinate results may be of two kinds, namely:-
a) Joint ownership, and
b) Ownership in-common.
Absolute and limited ownership:-
An absolute owner is the one who is vested all the rights over a thing to the exclusion of all. When all the rights of ownership, i.e. possession, enjoyment, and disposal are vested in a person without any restriction, the ownership called absolute. And limited ownership means when there are restrictions as to user, duration or disposal.
For example, before the enactment of the Hindu Succession Act, 1956, a woman had only limited ownership over the property because she held the property just for her life and after her death; the property passed on to the last heir or last holder of the property. Another example of limited ownership in English law is life tenancy when a property is held only for life.