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Download Front Matter (72 KB)

Download Foreword and Preface (278 KB)

Download Table of Contents (110 KB)

Download Part One: Restraints on Alienation; 1. Introduction (686 KB)

Download 2. Entails (884 KB)

Download 3. Present Legal Estates in Fee Simple (2.3 MB)

Download 4. Present Legal Estates for Life (928 KB)

Download 5. Present Legal Estates for Years (1.2 MB)

Download 6. Expectant Legal Interests in Land (803 KB)

Download 7. Legal Interests in Chattels Personal (1.9 MB)

Download 8. Equitable Interests and Interests Subject Thereto (2.6 MB)

Download Part Two: The Common-Law Rule against Perpetuities; 9. Source, Nature and Local Reception (1006 KB)

Download 10. The Period of Rule (1.1 MB)

Download 11. The Requirement of Certainty of Vesting (2.5 MB)

Download 12. Class Gifts (555 KB)

Download 13. Powers of Appointment (772 KB)

Download 14. Interests to Which the Rule Applies (1.1 MB)

Download 15. Trusts and Charities (1.0 MB)

Download 16. Accumulations (684 KB)

Download 17. Consequences of Violation of the Rule (1.2 MB)

Download Three: The Two Lives Statutes; 18. The Statutory Scheme (686 KB)

Download 19. The Restrictions of Life Estates (476 KB)

Download 20. What Suspends the Absolute Power Alienation (2.8 MB)

Download 21. The Statutory Period (1.8 MB)

Download Table of Statutory and Constitutional Citations (383 KB)

Download Table of Restatement Citations (81 KB)

Download Table of Periodical Citations (124 KB)

Download Table of Cases (630 KB)

Download Index (1.6 MB)


The central theme of this study comprises the judicial and legislative rules developed to restrict attempts by men of property to endow their families in perpetuity, usually with land, in such manner that each successive living generation can neither part with the property nor prevent unborn generations from succeeding to it. Part One deals with attempts to accomplish this object by bestowing the whole title on each living generation but denying each such generation the power to dispose of the property or to prevent its· descent to the next generation. In this part the principal restrictive rules are judicial, the common-law rules against restraints on alienation. Part Two deals with attempts to accomplish the same object by splitting the title into present and future estates; bestowing only an estate for life on the currently living generation and conveying future estates directly to unborn generations, so that the currently living generation cannot cut them off. In this part the principal restrictive rules are likewise judicial, the common law Rule Against Perpetuities and the common-law Rule Against Accumulations. Part Two also deals with a partial statutory substitute for the common law Rule Against Accumulations which was in force in Michigan from 1847 to 1952. Part Three deals with a group of Michigan statutes, applicable to dispositions of land made between 184 7 and 1949, which partially superseded the common-law Rule Against Perpetuities and supplemented, but did not supersede, the common-law rules against restraints on alienation.

Publication Date



University of Michigan Law School


Ann Arbor


Rule against Perpetuities, Fee simple, Land, Chattels, Vesting, Charities, Appointment, Michigan, England, Generations, Rule against Accumulations, Statutes, Alienation


Common Law | Estates and Trusts | Family Law | Property Law and Real Estate


Published under the auspices of the University of Michigan Law School (which, however, assumes no responsibility for the views expressed) with the aid of funds derived from gifts to the University of Michigan by William W. Cook.

Perpetuities and other Restraints: A Study of the Michigan Statutes and Decisions Relating to Perpetuities and Other Devices Which Fetter the Alienability of Property, Against the Background of the Laws of England and Other American Jurisdictions