property. The owner is he who has dominion of a thing real or person-al, corporeal or incorporeal, which he has a right to enjoy and to do with as he pleases, even to spoil or destroy it, as far as the law permits, unless he be prevented by some agreement or covenant which restrains his right. 2. The right of the owner is more extended than that of him who has only the use of the thing. The owner of an estate may, therefore change the face of it; he may cut the wood, demolish the buildings, build new ones, and dig wherever he may deem proper, for minerals, stone, plaster, and similar things. He may commit what would be considered waste if done by another. 3. The owner continues to have the same right although he perform no acts of ownership, or be disabled from performing them, and although another perform such acts, without the knowledge or against the will of the owner. But the owner may lose his right in a thing, if he permit it to remain in the possession of a third person, for sufficient time to enable the latter to acquire a title to it by prescription, or lapse of time. 4. When there are several joint owners of a thing, as for example, of a ship, the majority of them have the right to make contracts in respect of such thing, in the usual course of business or repair, and the like, and the minority will be bound by such contracts.
Law Dictionary – Alternative Legal Definition
The person in whom is vested the ownership, dominion, or title of property; proprietor. He who has dominion of a thing, real or personal, corporeal or incorporeal, which he has a right to enjoy and do with as he pleases, even to spoil or destroy it, as far as the law permits, unless he be prevented by some agreement or covenant which restrains his right. Bouvier. Equitable owner. One who is recognized in equity as the owner of property, because the real and beneficial use and title belong to him, although the bare legal title is vested in another, e.g., a trustee for his benefit. General owner. The general owner of a thing is he who has the primary or residuary title to it; as distinguished from a special owner, who has a special interest in the same thing, amounting to a qualified ownership, such, for example, as a bailee’s lien. Farmers’ & Mechanics Nat. Bank v. Logan, 74 N. Y. 581. Joint owners. Two or more persons who jointly own and hold title to property, e.g., joint tenants. Legal owner. One who is recognized and held responsible by the law as the owner of property. In a more particular sense, one in whom the legal title to real estate is vested, but who holds it in trust for the benefit of another, the latter being called the “equitable” owner. Part owners. Joint owners; co-owners; those who have shares of ownership in the same thing, particularly a vessel. Reputed owner. He who has the general credit or reputation of being the owner or proprietor of goods is said to be the reputed owner. See Santa Cruz Rock Pav. Co. v. Lyons (Cal.) 43 Pac. 601. This phrase is chiefly used in English bankruptcy practice, where the bankrupt is styled the “reputed owner” of goods lawfully in his possession, though the real owner may be another person. The word “reputed” has a much weaker sense than its derivation would appear to warrant; importing merely a supposition or opinion derived or made up from outward appearances, and often unsupported by fact. The term “reputed owner” is frequently employed in this sense. 2 Steph. Comm. 206. Riparian owner. See RIPARIAN. Special owner. One who has a special interest in an article of property, amounting to a qualified ownership of ft, such, for example, as a bailee’s lien; as distinguished from the general owner, who has the primary or residuary title to the same thing.