Johnson, pp. 159-181: Rules Furthering Marketability
Let’s look at three rules by which the common law tried to keep families from hoarding all the property.
A. The Destructibility of Contingent Remainders
This is more or less only for historical interest.
At common law, lapses in the seisin were not allowed. Remainders weren’t allowed to spring. Contingent remainders were destroyed if they didn’t take effect at the end of the prior estate. But this was before the Statute of Uses and the recognition of executory interests.
Another rule was that you could destroy a contingent remainder by acquiring both the life estate and the (fictional) reversion “surrounding” the contingent remainder and kind of “crush” it in between. Vested remainders don’t get “crushed”.
But by 1700, executory interests were indestructible. So how do you make indestructible future interests at this point?
B. The Rule in Shelley’s Case and the Doctrine of Worthier Title
Case: Seymour v. Heubaum
A. The Rule Against Perpetuities
T. Shaffer and C. Mooney, The Planning and Drafting of Wills and Trusts, 173-179