Table of Contents
TITLE III - OF USUFRUCT, USE AND HABITATION
CHAPTER I - OF USUFRUCT
SECTION I - GENERAL DEFINITIONS
Art. 1. Usufruct is the right of enjoying a certain thing the property of which is vested in another, and to draw from the same, all the profit, utility and advantages which it may produce, as the owner himself could do, provided it be without altering the substance of the thing.
This obligation of not altering the substance of the thing, takes place only in the case of a complete usufruct.
Art. 2. There are things which produce by themselves some advantage to the person who possess them, without their substance being altered by the use to which they are applied; as a piece of land produces rents, &c. The person who has the usufruct of said things, is bound to preserve them as much as possible, in order to return them to the owner, when the usufruct is at an end; and such are the things properly susceptible of usufruct, and it is for this reason that they come under the denomination of what is called a perfect usufruct.
Art. 3. On the contrary, there are things whose substance is altered and changed by use, as wine, oil, &c. which become useless to those who possess them, unless they make use of the same. Such things are not, properly speaking, susceptible of usufruct; nevertheless public utility has caused to be admitted a kind of usufruct in said things, and this is what is called incomplete usufruct.
Thus the usufructuary of such things has a right either to sell such things, or to make whatever use of them he may think proper, on condition of causing the same to be valued, and returning to the owner the estimated value of the same, after the right of usufruct shall be at an end, as is prescribed in the following section.
Art. 4. Usufruct may be established by all sorts of titles, by a deed of sale, by a marriage contract, by donation, transaction, exchange, last will, and even by law.
Thus the usufruct to which a father is entitled on the estate of his children during the marriage, is a legal usufruct.
Art. 5. Usufruct may be established on every description of estates moveable or immoveable, corporeal or incorporeal.
Art. 6. Usufruct may be established simply or to take place at a certain day, or under condition, in a word under all such modifications as the person who gives such a right, may be pleased to annex to it.
Art. 7. It may be granted to all such as may be possessed of an estate, even to communities or corporations.
SECTION II - OF THE RIGHTS OF THE USUFRUCTUARY
Art. 8. The usufructuary has a right to enjoy all sorts of profits, whether natural or the produce of industry or civil, proceeding from the object whose use belongs to him.
Art. 9. Natural profits are such as are the spontaneous produce of the earth, the increase of cattle are likewise natural profits.
The profits which result from industry, bestowed on a piece of ground, are those which are obtained by cultivation.
Art. 10. Civil profits are the rents of houses, the interests on money which is due, the arrears of rents or annuities.
The price of leases is likewise enumerated among the civil profits.
Art. 11. The natural profits or such as are the produce of industry, hanging by branches or by roots, at the time when the usufruct is open, belong to the usufructuary.
Profits in the same state, at the moment when the usufruct is at an end belong to the owner without either's being obligated to compensate the other, for either work or seeds.
Art. 12. The produce of cattle and bees, such as the milk, the hair, the wool and the honey belong to the usufructuary during the whole time of the usufruct.
It is the same with respect to the young of cattle, because they are considered as the natural profits from the thing itself.
But there is an exception with respect to the children of the slaves; they belong to the owner although they be born during the time of the usufruct. The usufructuary has nothing but the enjoyment of the profits arising from their work or services.
Art. 13. Civil profits are suppossd to be obtained day by day, and they belong to the usufructuary, in proportion to the duration of his usufruct.
Art. 14. The usufruct of a house carries with it the enjoyment of said house, of the profit which it may bring, and indeed of such furniture as is permanently fixed therein, even should the title by which the usufruct is established, make no mention of the same.
Art. 15. If the usufruct includes things which cannot be used without being expended, such as money, provisions, liquors, the usufructuary has a right to use the same, but under the obligation of returning the same quantity, quality and value, or their estimated price, at the expiration of the usufruct.
Art. 16. If the usufruct comprehends things which though not consumed at once, are gradually impaired by wear and decay, such as furniture, the usufructuary has, in like manner, a right to make use of them for the purposes for which they are intended; and at the expiration of the usufruct he is obliged only to restore them in the state in which they may be, provided, they have not been impaired through his improbity or default.
And even should any of these things be entirely worn out by use at the expiration of the usufruct, the usufructuary is not bound to make good the same.
Art. 17. The usufruct of a life, or perpetual annuity gives likewise the asufructuary, as long as the usufruct lasts, the right of receiving the arrears of said annuity without being bound to any restitution.
Art. 18. The usufructuary has a right to draw all the profits which are usually produced by the things subject to the usufruct.
Accordingly he may cut trees on land of which he has the usufruct, dig stones, sand and other materials both for his use and for sale, provided he act in those respects as a prudent father, and so as that the inheritance be not thereby rendered entirely barren or useless.
Art. 19. The usufructuary enjoys the increase brought by alluvion to the land of which he has the usufruct.
But he has no right, not even the right of enjoyment to the treasure which may be discovered there during the period of the usufruct, unless he himself has discovered it, in which case he shall only enjoy the right granted by law to such persons as find a treasure in a piece of land the property of another person.
Art. 20. The usufructuary enjoys the right of services, ways or others due to the inheritance of which he has the usufruct, and if this inheritance is inclosed within the other lands of him who has established such usufruct, the way must be gratuitously furnished to the usufructuary by the proprietor of the said lands or by his heirs.
Art. 21. The usufructuary may enjoy by himself, or lease to another or even sell or give away his right.
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