Book 5 Real property rights
Title 5.5 Common ownership
Article 5:60 Common ownership by virtue of a juridical act
Common ownership arises when an immovable thing is owned as a community
of property by the owners of two or more lands, with the intention that
it is to be used for the common benefit of those lands, which function
is written down in a notarial deed between them, followed by the registration
of this deed in the public registers for registered property.
Article 5:61 End of common ownership
- 1. Common ownership that has arisen by virtue
of the previous Article, ends:
a. when the community of property of the immovable
b. when the function of the immovable thing,
in the meaning that it is to be used for the common benefit of the involved
lands, is terminated by a notarial deed between the common owners, followed
by the registration of this deed in the public registers for registered
c. as soon as the common benefit has ended
for each of the involved lands.
- 2. The fact that the common benefit has ended
for each of the involved lands, may be registered in the public registers
for registered property.
Article 5:62 Common ownership by virtue of law
- 1. A free-standing partition wall, a fence
or a hedge is held in common ownership and forms for this purpose a community
of property if the boundary of two lands belonging to different owners
runs in a lengthwise direction underneath it.
- 2. Where two buildings or constructions,
belonging to different owners, have the same partition wall, this wall
is held in common ownership and forms for this purpose a community of
Article 5:63 Characteristics of common ownership
- 1. A share in the common ownership of an
immovable thing cannot be separated from the right of ownership of the
- 2. There is no right of action to claim the
apportionment (division) of an immovable thing that only forms a community
of property because it is held in common ownership.
Article 5:64 Right of access to the common immovable
Common ownership encloses a duty for each of the common owners to give
each other access to the immovable thing.
Article 5:65 Maintenance, cleaning and renewal
An immovable thing held in common ownership must be maintained, cleaned
and, if necessary, renewed at the expense of all common owners jointly.
Article 5:66 Transfer of a common ownership share
to other common owners
- 1. An owner of land who has a share in the
common ownership of an immovable thing that is connected to his land,
may transfer this share separately from his land to the other common owners
of that immovable thing.
- 2. If a common owner, at his own costs, wants
to proceed to such a transfer in order to get released from his future
duties to participate in the (costs of) maintenance, cleaning and renewal
of the immovable thing, then the other owners are compelled to cooperate
in this transfer, provided that he grants them, if necessary, a right
of superficies or an easement on his land so that they are able to continue
to exercise their common ownership rights to that immovable thing.
- 3. The previous paragraphs do not apply to
a partition wall that two buildings or constructions have in common, nor
to a wall, a fence or a hedge separating two lands in an uninterrupted
built-up area of a Municipality.
Article 5:67 Making constructions against or in a
common partition wall
- 1. Each common owner may build a construction
against a partition wall which is held in common ownership and he may
also attach to it beams, frames, anchors and other works up to half of
the thickness of that wall, provided that he causes no damage to that
wall or to constructions that his neighbour has rightfully attached to
- 2. Except in the event of an emergency, a
common owner may claim that, before another common owner starts to attach
a construction to the wall, an expert will indicate how this must be done
without damaging the wall or the constructions that already have been
rightfully attached to it by the first mentioned common owner.
Article 5:68 Right to install a gutter
Each of the common owners may assemble a gutter on top of a partition
wall which is held in common ownership up to one half of its thickness,
provided that the water is not drained off on the land of another common
Article 5:69 Exclusion of the applicability of certain
Articles 5:64, 5:65, 5:66, paragraph 2, 5:67 and 5:68 are not applicable
insofar the common owners have made a derogating arrangement in accordance
with Article 3:168 of the Civil Code.