The real agreement as causa for the transfer of immovable property
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The difference between the causal and abstract theories of transfer of ownership has been discussed extensively in property law textbooks and journals, mostly with the emphasis on movable property. Initial judgments on this topic dealt with the requirements for the transfer of movable property only. It is but in the last few years that judgments have been reported regarding the application of the principles of the abstract theory to the transfer of ownership of immovable property. The purpose of this article is not to repeat the above-mentioned historical and comparative research, but to indicate how the abstract theory of transfer of ownership and the concomitant principle in respect of a valid real agreement are applied to the transfer of immovable property in terms of the negative deeds registration system in South Africa. Not only the theoretical difference between the abstract and causal systems of transfer of ownership has to be taken into consideration in the case of immovable property, but also practical requirements of the registration system.
- Faculty of Law