Acquisitive prescription in view of the property clause

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dc.contributor.advisor Van der Walt, A. J. en_ZA
dc.contributor.author Marais, Ernst Jacobus en_ZA
dc.contributor.other Stellenbosch University. Faculty of Law. Dept. of Public Law. en_ZA
dc.date.accessioned 2011-11-02T11:54:57Z en_ZA
dc.date.accessioned 2011-12-05T13:19:20Z
dc.date.available 2011-11-02T11:54:57Z en_ZA
dc.date.available 2011-12-05T13:19:20Z
dc.date.issued 2011-12 en_ZA
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/18004 en_ZA
dc.description Thesis (LLD )--Stellenbosch University, 2011. en_ZA
dc.description.abstract ENGLISH ABSTRACT: Acquisitive prescription (“prescription”), an original method of acquisition of ownership, is regulated by two prescription acts. Prescription is mostly regarded as an unproblematic area of South African property law, since its requirements are reasonably clear and legally certain. However, the unproblematic nature of this legal rule was recently brought into question by the English Pye case. This case concerned an owner in England who lost valuable land through adverse possession. After the domestic courts confirmed that the owner had lost ownership through adverse possession, the Fourth Chamber of the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg found that this legal institution constituted an uncompensated expropriation, which is in conflict with Article 1 of Protocol No 1 to the European Convention on Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms 1950. This judgment may have repercussions for the constitutionality of prescription in South African law, despite the fact that the Grand Chamber – on appeal – found that adverse possession actually constitutes a mere (constitutional) deprivation of property. Therefore, it was necessary to investigate whether prescription is in line with section 25 of the Constitution. To answer this question, the dissertation investigates the historical roots of prescription in Roman and Roman-Dutch law, together with its modern requirements in South African law. The focus then shifts to how prescription operates in certain foreign systems, namely England, the Netherlands, France and Germany. This comparative perspective illustrates that the requirements for prescription are stricter in jurisdictions with a positive registration system. Furthermore, the civil law countries require possessors to possess property with the more strenuous animus domini, as opposed to English law that merely requires possession animo possidendi. The justifications for prescription are subsequently analysed in terms of the Lockean labour theory, Radin’s personality theory and law and economics theory. These theories indicate that sufficient moral and economic reasons exist for retaining prescription in countries with a negative registration system. These conclusions are finally used to determine whether prescription is in line with the property clause. The FNB methodology indicates that prescription constitutes a non-arbitrary deprivation of property. If one adheres to the FNB methodology it is equally unlikely that prescription could amount to an uncompensated expropriation or even to constructive expropriation. I conclude that prescription is in line with the South African property clause, which is analogous to the decision of the Grand Chamber in Pye. en_ZA
dc.description.abstract AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Verkrygende verjaring (“verjaring”), ‘n oorspronklike wyse van verkryging van eiendomsreg, word gereguleer deur twee verjaringswette. Verjaring word grotendeels beskou as ‘n onproblematiese aspek van die Suid-Afrikaanse sakereg, aangesien die vereistes daarvan taamlik duidelik en regseker is. Nietemin is die onproblematiese aard van hierdie regsinstelling onlangs deur die Engelse Pye-saak in twyfel getrek. Hierdie saak handel oor ‘n eienaar wat waardevolle grond in Engeland deur adverse possession verloor het. Nadat die plaaslike howe die verlies van eiendomsreg deur adverse possession bevestig het, het die Vierde Kamer van die Europese Hof van Menseregte in Straatsburg bevind dat hierdie regsreël neerkom op ‘n ongekompenseerde onteiening, wat inbreuk maak op Artikel 1 van die Eerste Protokol tot die Europese Verdrag van die Reg van die Mens 1950. Hierdie uitspraak kan implikasies inhou vir die grondwetlikheid van verjaring in die Suid-Afrikaanse reg, ten spyte van die Groot Kamer se bevinding – op appèl – dat adverse possession eintlik neerkom op ‘n grondwetlik geldige ontneming van eiendom. Derhalwe was dit nodig om te bepaal of verjaring bestaanbaar is met artikel 25 van die Suid-Afrikaanse Grondwet. Vir hierdie doel word die geskiedkundige wortels van verjaring in die Romeinse en Romeins- Hollandse reg, tesame met die moderne vereistes daarvan in die Suid-Afrikaanse reg, ondersoek. Daar word ook gekyk na hoe hierdie regsreël in buitelandse regstelsels, naamlik Engeland, Nederland, Frankryk en Duitsland, funksioneer. Hierdie regsvergelykende studie toon dat verjaring strenger vereistes het in regstelsels met ‘n positiewe registrasiestelsel. Verder vereis die sivielregtelike lande dat ‘n besitter die grond animo domini moet besit, wat strenger is as die Engelsregtelike animus possidendi-vereiste. Die regverdigingsgronde van verjaring word vervolgens geëvalueer ingevolge die Lockeaanse arbeidsteorie, Radin se persoonlikheidsteorie en law and economics-teorie. Hierdie teorieë illustreer dat daar genoegsame morele en ekonomiese regverdigings vir die bestaan van verjaring is in lande met ‘n negatiewe regstrasiestelsel. Hierdie bevindings word ten slotte gebruik om te bepaal of verjaring bestaanbaar is met die eiendomsklousule. Die FNB-metodologie toon dat verjaring neerkom op ‘n geldige, nie-arbitrêre ontneming volgens artikel 25(1). Indien ‘n mens die FNB-metodologie volg is dit eweneens onwaarskynlik dat verjaring op ‘n ongekompenseerde onteiening – of selfs op konstruktiewe onteiening – neerkom. Gevolglik strook verjaring wel met die Suid-Afrikaanse eiendomsklousule, welke uitkoms soortgelyk is aan dié van die Groot Kamer in die Pye-saak. en_ZA
dc.format.extent ix, 331 p.
dc.language.iso en_ZA en_ZA
dc.publisher Stellenbosch : Stellenbosch University en_ZA
dc.subject Constitutional property law en_ZA
dc.subject Property clause en_ZA
dc.subject Private law en_ZA
dc.subject Constitutional compatibility en_ZA
dc.subject Theses -- Public law en_ZA
dc.subject Dissertations -- Public law en_ZA
dc.subject.lcsh Prescription (Law
dc.subject.lcsh Conflict of laws -- Prescription
dc.subject.other Public Law en_ZA
dc.title Acquisitive prescription in view of the property clause en_ZA
dc.type Thesis
dc.rights.holder Stellenbosch University


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