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What is a fee simple? Kiritsis Law Group 212 922 0005

May 13, 2021

By: John Kiritsis, Esq., CPA, MBA, MS, JD, LL.M

Arguably, the best real property interest possible, because it entitles its owner to absolute and total interest in real property. The 3 qualities of a fee simple are that it is alienable, devisable and descendible. Historically, many courts required the use of specific language for a fee simple interest to convey. In modern times, most courts presume the conveyance of a fee simple interest, unless there is language to the contrary. The determination of a fee simple interest, is largely a matter of state law, which often may differ among the different jurisdictions. Fee simple is sometimes referred to as fee simple absolute to underscore the ownership of the entire (absolute) property interest. The word “fee” can trace its origins to the feudalist period of Europe and it is derived from the word fief (in Latin it’s called feudum). Fee Simple ownership, can also have tax implications by shifting the tax reporting and/or assessments to a different parent. Also, in many localities the owner of a fee simple property interest, may be subject to property taxes.

 

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