Who is the Owner?
Just as the spectrum of allowable property objects was affected by the distinction between property-as-commodity (property as wealth) and property-as-propriety (property as the material basis of the good – i.e., land – society), the subject matter of property rights was greatly affected by the agglomeration phenomenon. Both Anglo-American and civil law sought a single legal person in whom it could be said that the vast complex of property rights, privileges, and powers resides.
Anglo-American and civil law pursued a single legal individual in whom it could be said that the entire array of property rights, privileges, and powers resides. Historical changes in the law of persons (recognition, for example, of more individuals as being of equal status before the law) have produced more people to whom the propensity of agglomeration could be added but not vanquished. The fact that modern law openly permits the creation of fictitious legal persons (corporations) has exacerbated the phenomenon, if anything.
About single individuals
The paradigmatic holder of property in both Anglo-American and civil law is a single human being. The concept has not yet been affected by the fact that far more capital is owned in the West today in some form of co-ownership or corporate ownership.
There are still limits on the capacity to hold land and on the capacity to handle the property. Therefore, many jurisdictions still in some way restrict the capacity of non-citizens to own property. Several of the Western countries that have non-Western indigenous peoples living between them have separate rules regarding property holding capacity of these peoples.
Most citizens legally able to hold a property are not legally able to deal with it. Children are generally accepted in Western legal systems as being capable of owning land, but without the permission of their parents or guardians, they can not deal with it. All Western legal systems include procedures which may deprive incompetent adults of their ability to deal with land. Such protocols usually provide for the appointment of a guardian to the incompetent; on the behalf of the incompetent, the guardian is allowed to deal with the land.
About Concurrent Individual Owners
In Anglo-American jurisdictions the two most commonly recognized forms of co-ownership are joint tenancy and tenancy in common. Every tenant has the right to possess in both ways, and the luxury of using the whole thing. If the ownership or use of the item is practically impossible for them all, they will decide among themselves who will in fact have possession, since all have possession of it in statute.
When it comes to succession and the ability to express the two types of co-tenancy vary. If one of the joint tenants dies in joint tenancy, the remaining tenants succeed in achieving his share (also known as moiety).
About Marital owners
Many American states now provide for an elective vote that is non-barrableby statute. A traditional statutory procedure allows a spouse the right to override any provision made in the will of the deceased spouse and instead take a statutorily specified fraction (typically one-third) of the estate of the deceased. A specific marital property structure prevails in civil-law jurisdictions, and in a small number of U.S. states.
One can not overestimate the importance of marital property in the West for the definition of land. While partners have some power to change their arrangements for marital property by private agreement, most married people in the West today live under a system of either community property or separate property subject to separation upon divorce and a compulsory share in the surviving spouse. One might well challenge the degree to which any married Westerner can be said to have individual property because his or her partner has so much of a stake therein.