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31 Cards in this Set

  • Front
  • Back
Fee Simple
to A; to A and his heirs

Absolute ownership; freely devisable, descendible, and alienable

No accompanying future interest
Fee Tail
to A and the heirs of his body

At common law, pass directly to grantee's lineal blood descendants no matter what

abolished in NY (and almost everywhere) - creates fee simple absolute
Fee Simple Determinable
to A for so long as...

automatic forfeiture if condition is violated

Freely divisible, descendible, alienable, but always subject to the condition

possibility of reverter in grantor


called "fee on limitation" in NY
Fee Simple Subject to a Condition Subsequent
to A, but if X occurs, grantor may re-enter and retake

not automatically terminated, but terminable at grantor's option if stated condition occurs

called "fee on condition" in NY
Fee Simple Subject to Executory Limitation
To A, but if X occurs, then to B

if condition is broken, estate is forfeited to someone other than the grantor
Defeasible Fees - rules of construction
-Words of aspiration are inadequate
-Absolute restraints on alienation are void
Life Estate
to A for life; to A for B's life

Life tenant entitled to all ordinary uses and profits of the land, but Life tenant must not commit waste
Possibility of Reverter
Interest capable of creation in grantor, accompanies only fee simple determinable
Right of Entry
also known as Power of Termination

Interest capable of creation in grantor, accompanies only fee simple subject to condition subsequent
Arises in the grantor who transfers an estate of lesser quantum than she started with other than fee simple determinable or fee simple to condition subsequent
Three types of vested remainders
1. Indefeasibly vested remainder
2. Vested remainder subject to complete defeasance
3. Vested remainder subject to open
Shifting executory interest
To A and his heirs, but if B does X, then to B and his heirs; to A but if A uses land for nonresidential purposes during the next 20 years, to B.

Always follows a defeasible fee and cuts short someone other than the grantor
Springing executory interest
To A, if and when X

Cuts short O, the grantor
New York Executory Interests
Merged into "remainders subject to a condition precedent"
Rule of convenience
Class closes whenever any member can demand possession.

To A for life, then to B's children; class closes when A dies

Womb rule
Remainder: distinguishing characteristics
Accompanies preceding estate of known, fixed duration, usually life estate or term of years.

Does not cut short another estate, allows it to run its natural course.
When is a remainder vested?
Created in ascertained person; not subject to condition precedent.

If not vested, then contingent
Future interests subject to condition precedent in NY
Called "Remainder subject to condition precedent."

Includes common law executory interests and contingent remainders.
Destructibility of contingent remainders

To A for life, and if B has reached the age of 21, to B.
At common law, a contingent remainder was destroyed if it was still contingent at the time the preceding estate ended.

Abolished; under modern rule grantor holds subject to springing executory interest until contingency fulfilled (or not).

Abolished in NY
Rule in Shelley's Case

To A for life, then, on A's death, to A's heirs." A is alive
At common law: Present and future interests would merge, giving A a fee simple absolute.

Rule of law which applies even in face of contrary grantor intent.

Virtually abolished today
Abolished in NY

Where abolished, this conveys life estate in A, contingent remainder in A's unascertained heirs, and reversion in O.
Doctrine of Worthier Title

to A for life, then to O's heirs
This doctrine applies to render the contingent remainder in O's heirs void. Thus, A has a life estate, and O has a reversion.

Rule of construction, not applicable in face of contrary grantor intent

Abolished in NY for transfers after 9/1/67.

Where abolished, A has a life estate, and O's heirs have a contingent remainder.
Indefeasibly vested remainder
Holder certain to acquire in future, no strings attached.
Vested remainder subject to complete defeasance (or subject to total divestment)
NY: Remainder vested subject to complete defeasance

Right to possession could be cut off by condition subsequent.

Distinguish from contingent remainder subject to condition precedent!
Vested remainder subject to open
Vested in a group of takers at least one of whom is qualified to take possession but subject to partial diminution because additional takers not yet ascertained can still qualify as class members

Apply rule of convenience to determine when class closes.
Rule of convenience
The class closes whenever any member can demand possession.

Example: To A for life, then to B's children. Class closes on A's death.
Common law rule against perpetuities
certain kinds of future interests are void if there is any possibility, however remote, that the given interest may vest more than 21 years after the death of a measuring life.
Rule against perpetuities: applicability
RAP potentially applies ONLY to contingent remainders, executory interests, and certain vested remainders subject to open.
Bright-line rules for common law RAP
1. A gift to an open class that is conditioned on the members surviving to an age beyond 21 violates the common law RAP
2. Many shifting executory interests violate the RAP.
RAP reforms
1. "Wait and see" - determined on the basis of facts as they now exist at conclusion of measuring life.
2. Uniform Statutory RAP - common law RAP with alternative 90-year vesting period

Both allow cy pres
Cy pres
If a given disposition violates the RAP, a court may reform it in a way that most closely matches grantor's intent while still complying with the RAP.
New York Perpetuities Reform Statute
Rejects wait and see and cy pres.

1. Age contingencies reduced to 21 years
2. Presumption that woman over age 55 cannot have a child.
3. Suspension rule. RAP applies to restrict the power to sell or transfer for longer than perpetuities period