Of trustees and beneficial owners. An inquiry into the proprietary aspects of trusts and trust-like devices from a European private law perspective
PhD student: Mr W. Loof
Promotor: Prof.em. J.H.M. van Erp
Duration: 1/9/2010 - 31/8/2014
PhD defence: Maastricht, 19/12/2016
Classical 19th century civil law approach towards ownership was static and formalistic. Developments in French and German law show, however, that this approach is changing. Ownership is becoming a flexible tool. By limiting owners rights through contract law, the contractual arrangements can, in fact, be so strong that the formal non-owner may be characterized as economic owner. Such economic ownership puts pressure on the classical civil law approach, thus bringing the civil law closer to the flexible common law perception of ownership. Contractualisation of civil law ownership is thus a necessary step towards developing a European property law.