Usufruct is one of the real rights under the Civil and Commercial Code of Thailand (CCC). In this article, we are going to give you essential information about it, including its meaning, period of time, compensation assignment, inheritance, etc.
Usufruct means rights to the possession of immovable property, including the use, enjoyment, and management of the property. The usufruct of a forest, mine, or quarry entitles the usufructuary to the exploitation of the forest, mine, or quarry (Section 1417 of the CCC). It gives more rights than a leasehold right but fewer rights than a freehold right.
Period of Time
A usufruct may be created either for a period of time or for the life of the usufructuary. If no time has been fixed, it is presumed that the usufruct is for the life of the usufructuary. If it is created for a period of time, the period may not exceed thirty years; if a longer period is stipulated, it shall be reduced to thirty years. The grant may be renewed for a period not exceeding thirty years from the time of renewal. (Sections 1418 and 1403 paragraph 3 of the CCC).
Assignment and Inheritance
Unless otherwise provided in the act creating the usufruct, the usufructuary may transfer the exercise of his right to a third person. In such cases, the owner of the property may sue the transferee directly (Section 1422 of the CCC).
However, the usufruct comes to an end with the death of the usufructuary (last paragraph of Section 1418 of the CCC). It means the right of usufruct isn’t transferable or transmissible by way of inheritance.
Maintenance and Expenses
To exercise usufruct, the usufructurist not only must take as much care of the property as a person of ordinary prudence would take of his own property but also must keep the substance of the property unaltered and is responsible for ordinary maintenance and pretty repairs.
If important repairs or measures are necessary to preserve the property, the usufructuary must inform the owner and permit them to be carried out. In case of default by the owner, the usufructuary may have the work carried out at the owner’s expense (Sections 1421 and 1424 of the CCC).
For the duration of the usufruct, the usufructuary shall bear expenses for the management of the property, pay taxes and duties, and be responsible for interest payable on debts charged upon it (Section 1426 of the CCC).
Usufruct is an option for real rights under Thai law that may be suitable for you. It gives you different rights from freehold and leasehold, as well as superficies and Habitation. For further information, just feel free to contact us. If you are in need of a real estate lawyer or for more information, feel free to contact us at any time.