What are the limitations of a temporary usufruct?

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What are the limitations of a temporary usufruct?

If someone is given usufruct of a home
for a set period of time, do they need
to legally accept itas in do some type
of paperwork and if they utilize the
home, are they responsible for the bills
and upkeep associated?

Asked on May 6, 2018 under Estate Planning, Louisiana

Answers:

M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 2 years ago | Contributor

A userfruct is similar to a life estate (as exists in common law jurisdictions), although it can last for less than a lifetime.  The person who has the userfruct is known as the "userfructory" (the equivalent of a life tenant) and the person who owns the property is known as the "naked owner"  (the equivalent of a remainderman).  Usufructs can arise under LA intestacy law. While the userfructory has the right to use the property much as they please (short of destroying or conveying it), they are obligated to make the normal and necessary repairs whereas the naked owner is responsible for extraordinary repairs. Further, the usufructuary is responsible for any losses resulting from any fraud, default or neglect and for the annual charges to the property such as property taxes. If they fail to honor their obligations, they may lose their rights to the property. Only at that such time as the userfruct is lost, could the naked owner take charge of the property and change the locks, etc. Further, my research suggests that there is no specific paperwork that the usderfructory must complete in order ot accept their rights to the property. However, since this right is specific to the state of LA, you should consult with a local probate or real estate attorney as they can best advise further.


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