Adverse Possession

We can give you information about the requirements needed to become the owner of a property/building due to time passing by.

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Some requirements:

  • Quiet and Uninterrupted Possession.
  • 10 years of possession with a
  • 20 years of possession without proof of title.
  • Proof of possession by due law time.
  • Clear ownership acts,  with animus domini.

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Usucapion or adverse possession

The usucapion, also known as adverse or positive possession is a method to acquire the ownership of a thing. In the Adverse Possession, a person is in possession of a property because a certain amount of time has passed and certain requirements established by law were met. It takes action against whoever appears as the owner of those properties in the Public Registry of Property, with the aim that the person declares that the prescription of the possessed property is accomplished.

The foundation of adverse possession, from the point of view of an active subject, answers to the need of putting an end to an uncertain state of law (those generated for possession suitable for usucapt, and those of property that help the property owner). As long as the attention is centered on the passive subject, the adverse possession rests by inertia in the authentic owner of the property, the person who abandoned it or that left it to another possessor. This inertia is what gives place to the adverse possession and will result in a fine imposed to the negligent owner.

It is clear that the foundation of adverse possession would not occur if you sue someone that is not the real owner, since the aforesaid state of uncertainty would not stop since the rights of the real owner of the property were not taken into account. Moreover, it wouldn’t make sense to claim the neglect of the property to whom is not the real owner, nor it would be logic to penalize somebody to whom the quality of “negligent owner” can´t be attributed to, because only the attitude of neglect can be the reason to constitute the legal action for the acceptance of the prescription.

Just as the classic doctrine of Roman Law, our previous legislation and the legislation in force recognize that only the first possession, that is, the one of the owner, can produce the effect of acquiring the ownership by means of prescription. That is why the possession in the concept of ownership, is the first necessary condition to expire.

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