Tuesday, July 27, 2010

"Allodial" Title: A Disappeared Word and a Disappeared Concept

The concept of "allodial title" was recently brought to my attention by a commenter on property rights in America more broadly. It is no wonder that this phrase is so uncommon that not most spellchecks believe the word "allodial" not to even exist.

In a response to Reflections on Private Property:

Is there anything close to private property left in America? Today, those who supposedly own their property are subject to all sorts of restrictions, covenants, EPA rules and government taxes that never end... making them mere LEASE HOLDERS subject to the governments will.

Allodial title was once the method property was conveyed in America... allodial titles are the only real source of OWNERSHIP... being free from confiscation for taxes or another lien from private and government sources. AMERICA has no private property... one is never finished paying for their property, nor do they have a legal right to unfettered use of their property. Inch by inch... ownership of real property has been usurped by the state until no one ever has full ownership of their land... no one.

Here is a brief description of allodial title:

"In common legal use, allodial title is used to distinguish absolute ownership of land by individuals from feudal ownership, where property ownership is dependent on relationship to a lord or the sovereign. Webster's first dictionary (1825 ed) says "allodium" is "land which is absolute property of the owner, real estate held in absolute independence, without being subject to any rent, service, or acknowledgment to a superior. It is thus opposed to "feud."

True allodial title is rare, with most property ownership in the common law world—primarily, the United Kingdom, the United States, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and the Republic of Ireland—described more properly as being in fee simple. In particular, land is said to be "held of the Crown" in England and Wales and the Commonwealth realms. In England, there is no allodial land, all land being held of the Crown[dubious – discuss]; in the United States, all land is subject to eminent domain by the federal government, and there is thus no true allodial land. Some states within the US (notably Nevada and Texas) have provisions for considering land allodial under state law, but such land remains rare. Some of the Commonwealth realms (particularly Australia) recognize native title, a form of allodial title that does not originate from a Crown grant."

Land in the US is held in 'Fee Simple' a feudal form of ownership where the owners right to hold title is granted by the Federal Government and is subject to the governments good faith. As such, one doesn't have true and complete ownership of his own land in the US. Some countries... notably in the Mid-East do have allodial titles and such land passes to the heirs without liens or taxes... forever, or at least as long as the local government doesn't intervene to change the system of title... by force... of law.

Bet you thought you had private property in America? Well it all depends on one's interpretation of PRIVATE and ownership as defined by law.

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