Types of entitlements toward Polish real estate:
a. Ownership – is the broadest property entitlement that includes:
- right of possession,
- right of usage (including annihilation),
- right of disposal.
b. Perpetual usufruct – the right is very similar to ownership. Lands, which are subject to perpetual usufruct, are formally owned by Polish State or State entities, although substantial rights belong to the usufructor. A perpetual usufructor (a natural or legal person) can possess, use and dispose of the right to the property. Moreover, the buildings, which were erected on the lands, which are subject to perpetual usufruct, are owned by the perpetual usufructor. The perpetual usufruct agreement is concluded for 99 years or – in some exceptional cases – for 40 years.
c. Share in the building with assigned apartment – the right to the apartment in Poland might source from ones entitlement to share in the land or buildings, which consist of apartments. In that particular situation:
- share in the main property usually reflects size of the apartment,
- share in the main property indicates entitlement to particular unit/apartment.
This type of entitlement to apartment is rather unpopular due to its complicated nature. Besides type of entitlement is rather weak as in reality it is co-ownership of building (hand with building) rather than solo ownership of separated unit/apartment.
It is a relic of Polish People’s Republic. The character of share of property can cause some legal consequences, for example a foreigners can buy an apartment without a permit, but the permit is necessary when he/she wants to purchase share in property.
d. Cooperative member’s ownership right in an apartment – a right towards an apartment, which formally belongs to the housing cooperative. As a rule, it is very similar to ownership – it includes right of possession, usage and disposal. The right is transferrable, inheritable and enforceable.
e. Cooperative housing tenancy right – a right towards an apartment, which belongs to the housing cooperative. As a rule, it is very similar to lease – it includes right of possession and usage, but not right of disposal. The right is untransferable, noninheritable, and unenforceable.
Barrister, Senior Counsel