fee tail


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Related to fee tail: fee simple, life estate

fee tail

An ancient form of ownership and restriction on land,in which property could pass only to members of the direct male line of a family,and when a time came when there were no direct male members to inherit,the property reverted to the state.

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39-43, suggests that the fee tail is a complete vestige of the past.
supra note 10, at 195 ("The fee tail has been replaced by the life estate as a device for controlling inheritance.
Strictly speaking, there was no such thing as a writ of either fee simple or fee tail: fee simple was transferred primarily by livery of seisin (a public demonstration of actual possession) to which the written deed was only a witness, and though creation of a fee tail would certainly have necessitated a deed, this document could in no sense be called a writ.