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What is a FEE SIMPLE ABSOLUTE?
"To A" or "To A and his heirs"

Absolute Ownership, potentially infinite--freely divisible, descendable, alienable.  NO FUTURE INTEREST EXISTS.
What is a FEE TAIL?
"To A and the heirs of his body"--abolished in US & NY.

Historically it went to the grantees, by lineal blood descendants no matter what. It would generally have a future interest--In O (grantor)--reversion.  In 3rd party it's a remainder. 
What is a DEFEASIBLE FEE?
Fee Simple Determinable
Fee Simple to a Condition Subsequent
Fee Simple Subject to an Executory Limitation
What is a FEE SIMPLE DETERMINABLE?
"To A for so long as", "To A during", "To A until."
Must be clear durational language. If the stated condition is violated, forfiture is automatic. 
It's Divisible, Descendable & Alienable (always subject to the condition).
Possibility of Reverter in the grantor.
What is a FEE SIMPLE TO A CONDITION SUBSEQUENT?
"To A, but if X happens, grantor reserves the right to reenter and retake"
Must be clear durational language and must carve out the right to reenter.
Estate is NOT automatically terminated, but can be cut short at the grantor's option if the stated condition occurs. 
Right of reentry--power of termination.  (AKA Right of Reacquisition)
What is a FEE SIMPLE SUBJECT TO AN EXECUTORY LIMITATION?
"To A, but if X event occurs, then to B"
Fee Simple Subject to B's Shifting Executory Interest.
Just like a Fee Simple Determinable, but the state is automatically forfeited in favor of someone other than grantor. 
Shifting executory interest.
Two rules RE DEFEASIBLE FEES
Words of mere desire, hope or intention are insufficient to create defeasible fees.  Courts disfavor restrictions on free use of land.  Courts will not find a defeasible free UNLESS clear durational language is used. 

Absolute Restraints on alienation are void--it's an absolute ban on the power to sell or transfer, that is not linked to any reasonable time limited purpose (void and lead to Fee Simple Absolute).
What is a LIFE ESTATE?
"To A for life"--A is a life tenant.  Grantor has a reversion after A dies.
What is a LIFE ESTATE PUR AUTRE VIE?
When a life estate is measured by a life other than the grantor. 
"To A for life of B"
What are distinguishing characteristics of a life estate? 
Life tenant's entitlements are rooted in the doctrine of waste.  However, they are entitled to all ordinary uses and profits from the land.  Must not commit waste--can't hurt future holders.
What is WASTE?
Actual conduct that causes the drop in the value of the land.
What is VOLUNTARY WASTE AND NATURAL RESOURCES GENERAL RULE?
Life tenant must not consume or exploit natural resources on the property UNLESS one exception PURGE:
PRIOR USE--meaning prior to the grant the grantor used the land for exploitation. If it's a mine--only already opened mines--no new ones.
Reasonable REPAIRS--can consume for repairs
GRANT--can waste if granted the right 
EXPLOITATION--only use is to exploit
What is PERMISSIVE WASTE OR NEGLECT?
Occurs when land is allowed to fall into disrepair.  Life tenant must maintain the premises in REASONABLY GOOD REPAIR.  Life Tenant must pay all ordinary taxes on the land. 
What is AMELIORATIVE WASTE?
Life tenant must not engage in acts that will enhance the property's value, unless all future interest holders are known and consent.  In NY-Life Tenant may make reasonable improvements unless the remainder-man objects. 
3 Future Interests are capable of creation in the Grantor
Possibility of Reverter (accompanies a Fee Simple Determinable)
Right of Entry (accompanies a Fee Simple Subject to a Condition Subsequent)
The Reversion (arises in a grantor who transfers an estate of less quantum than she started with, other than a fee seimple determinable or a fee simple subject to a condition subsequent)
3 Future Interests created in someone other than the grantor
Vested Remainer: Indefeasibly vested remainder; vested remainder subject to complete defeasance; vested remainder subject to open.
Contingent remainder
Executory Interest: Shifting executory interest & springing executory interest
What is a remainder?
Remainder is a future interest created in a grantee that is capable of becoming possessory upon expiration of a prior possessory estate created in the same conveyance in which the remainder is created.
What is the difference between vested remainders and contingent remainders?
Remainder is vested if it is both created in an ascertained person and is not subject to any condition precedent. 
Contingent if it is created in an unascertained person or is subject to a condition precedent or both.

In NY--any future interest in a transferee that is subject to a condition precedent is called remainder subject to a condition precedent.  Remainder is contingent because: it is created in as yet unborn or unascertained persons or subject to a condition precedent.
What are Contingent Remainders?
At CL-a contingent remainder was destroyed if it was still contingent at the time the precedeing estate ended. 
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