The right of property is the right to enjoy, dispose of, and claim property. The Spanish Constitution defines this right as the right to enjoy, dispose of, and claim property. However, the Constitution also implicitly imposes a series of obligations towards the general interest.

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What is property rights?

The right of property is a fundamental right that grants the owner direct power over certain assets. Even so, it must be taken into account that it is also subject to regulations: it must not affect the rights of others nor exceed the limits imposed by law.

In some cases, ownership may be owned by two or more people. In this case, what is understood as the right of co-ownership, private property, and collective property arises, as necessary in each case.

How is property acquired?

There are several ways to obtain a property, which are:

  • Through inheritance from a family member or close person.
  • By usucapion. This term means that if a property does not have an owner, whoever occupies it will become its owner.
  • Through the sale.
  • By donation.
  • Through a public auction.

Characteristics of property law

Specific characteristics of property law must be taken into account to understand and respect its operation:


Unlike other rights, the generality includes the totality of the use, services, or utilities of the thing that is owned, of course, always taking into account the exceptions established by law.


It is a right that allows property powers to be separated, establishing a difference between each of them.


Sometimes limitations can be established on properties, but when these disappear, the property regains its general character.


Since the law includes all the powers of property, it does not allow an outsider to intervene in it. Thus, through exclusivity, it is allowed to prevent others’ enjoyment of good.


The property is not subject to time limitations. It can last indefinitely through successive owners, who will inherit the right to the property.

Examples of tangible and intangible property law

Property is only sometimes tangible. While most properties are tangible, such as a car, a house, or land, there are also intangible properties. Some examples of the most well-known intangible properties could be the intellectual property of a book or the patent of a design.

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Important Concepts in Property Law

First, it is essential to know that natural rights exist. These are legal powers (there are several, including the fundamental right of mortgage and the basic right of usufruct) that a particular individual can hold over something. In real estate matters, acquiring or transferring absolute rights requires registering the property titles in the real estate registries in the corresponding area (jurisdiction).

When someone gains power over a right or asset (which can be natural or movable property) and carries out material actions that reveal their control or power over it, the concept of possession comes into play.

Within the universe of fundamental rights, the so-called domain is present at the same time. It occurs every time a unit is under the action or will of a human being. The domain is classified as perfect or complete if it is given in a lasting manner and the object or element in question has not been encumbered with property rights towards another person. To highlight: there are restrictions on the domain that mark limits and ways of proceeding, for example, when it is a horizontal property.

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