A constitutional analysis of access rights that limit landowners' right to exclude

Dhliwayo, Priviledge (2015-12)

Thesis (LLD)--Stellenbosch University, 2015

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT : The right to exclude is portrayed either in a strong-absolute sense or a qualified sense. According to the South African doctrinal notion of ownership, ownership and the right to exclude are exercised and protected insofar as the law permits. The law sometimes grants non-owners access rights to land without the landowner’s prior permission or consent and this places substantial limitations on the right to exclude. The research problem addressed in this dissertation pivots on the relationship between exclusion and access rights. It provides an overview of the theoretical and doctrinal perspectives on the existence of limitations in the form of access rights, deriving from different sources and for different reasons, and considers possible justifications for the limitations. This dissertation shows that there is a wide range of limitations originating from different sources, with the result that limitations are to be expected and cannot be seen as exceptions. In this regard, the dissertation considers the justification issue from a constitutional perspective to determine whether it is necessary to justify all limitations on the right to exclude. From this perspective, justification for a limitation is not based on normative grounds, but instead focuses on the authority and reason for the limitation and its effect on the affected owner. The point is that limitations on the right to exclude are normal in a legal and constitutional system within which property functions and of which limitations are part. Case law and examples dealing with the conflict between exclusion and access rights indicate that exclusion of non-owners is not always the preferred outcome and that it is not prioritised abstractly. This suggests that the right to exclude is relative and contextual in nature.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING : Die reg tot uitsluiting word voorgehou as óf absoluut óf gekwalifiseerd. Volgens die Suid-Afrikaanse dogmatiese beskouing van eiendomsreg kan die reg tot uitsluiting uitgeoefen word insoverre die reg dit toelaat. Die reg verleen soms toegangsregte aan nie-eienaars sonder die eienaar se vooraf toestemming, wat ‘n wesenlike beperking op die eienaar se reg plaas. Die navorsingsprobleem wat in hierdie proefskrif aangespreek word fokus op die verhouding tussen uitsluiting en toegang. Dit verskaf ‘n oorsig van teoretiese en doktrinêre perspektiewe op die bestaan van beperkings in die vorm van toegangsregte, wat ontstaan uit verskillende bronne en vir verskillende redes, en oorweeg moontlike regverdigingsgronde vir die beperkings. Die proefskrif toon aan dat daar ‘n wye verskeidenheid beperkings uit verskillende bronne ontstaan, met die gevolg dat beperkings verwag moet word en dat dit nie as uitsonderings gesien kan word nie. Die proefskrif oorweeg die regverdigingsvraag vanuit ‘n grondwetlike perspektief om te bepaal of dit nodig is om alle beperkings op die reg om uit te sluit te regverdig. Vanuit hierdie perspektief blyk dit dat regverdiging nie op normatiewe gronde gebaseer is nie, maar eerder fokus die gesag en redes vir ‘n beperking, asook op die effek daarvan op die eienaar. Die punt is dat beperkings op die reg om uit te sluit normaal is in grondwetlike regsisteem waarbinne eiendom funksioneer en waarvan beperkings deel vorm. Regspraak en voorbeelde van die konflik tussen uitsluiting en toegang toon aan dat uitsluiting van nie-eienaars nie altyd die wenslike uitkoms is nie en dat dit nie op ‘n abstrakte wyse geprioritiseer kan word nie. Die reg om uit te sluit is dus relatief en kontekstueel.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/97933
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