Maltese Legislation on Residence – The Deal of Emphyteusis

Posting 1494 of the Maltese Civil Code (Chapter 16 of the Regulations of Malta), defines Emphyteusis as follows:

“Emphyteusis is a agreement whereby a person of the contracting get-togethers grants to the other, in perpetuity or for a time, a tenement for a stated yearly hire or ground-lease which the latter binds himself to pay back to the previous, possibly in money or in sort, as an acknowledgment of the tenure.”

Emphyteusis is standard of Continental law (European) and not English legislation. It is very distinct from lease or lease of a dwelling property or a piece of land. This is simply because unlike lease, Emphyteusis is a serious ideal which attaches to the land being contracted and not to the individual contracting such right. On the other hand, lease, getting a own ideal, does not attach to the land or the dwelling home being granted, but only to the individual receiving the lease. The authorized implications arising out of these variations are considerable, especially with regards to the rights and obligations of the contracting get-togethers.

The deal of Emphyteusis must be made by community deed right before a Notary General public. It would be null if carried out by suggests of a non-public crafting. Lease, on the other hand may perhaps be entered into by personal producing and will have the drive of legislation. The agreement of Emphyteusis cannot be adjusted throughout the emphyteutical time period. The moment the ground-lease is founded, it can not be adjusted.

Posting 1494 presents 3 critical phrases which will need to be clarified:

i. perpetuity or for a time

There are two styles of empytheutical grants: Perpetual Emphyteusis and short term Emphyteusis. The former is a payment which will have to be effected every year with the legal choice of redemption. Redemption renders the land freehold. Temporary Emphyteusis, on the other hand, is a deal for a number of many years. (Normally in Malta the most common amount of a long time contracted for are 17 several years, 21 several years, 99 yrs and 150 decades.)

ii. mentioned annually hire or floor-hire

The ‘canone’ or ground-hire must be mentioned in the deal, underneath discomfort of nullity, and is to be paid yearly to the dominus, i.e. the operator of the house.


The utilista acknowledges the reality that he can legally love that house and ought to admit the dominus as remaining the serious operator of this sort of house.

The contract of Emphyteusis is a sui generis agreement whereby the dominus, who is the serious owner of the property, is temporarily divested of all his possession legal rights. This kind of legal rights and obligations are shifted to the ‘utilista,’ the man or woman taking pleasure in these grant, during these types of time period. On the expiration of the deal, the assets, with all the enhancements made to it, will revert to the dominus and there will be no right to prolong the Emphyteusis.

In the old days, Emphyteusis utilized to be granted by land homeowners to farmers who tended the land. From time to time the agreement would be that as acknowledgment, somewhat than having to pay dollars, the farmer would produce to the dominus element of the deliver, harvest or fruit yielded by that land.

Possession rights and obligations are, all through the running of the Emphyteusis, vested in the utilista and not the true operator. Report 1507 states that the utilista is certain to have out any obligationimposed by law on the house owners of properties or lands. This demonstrates the duty which the utilista has in conditions of routine maintenance of the home. He need to take care of these house as if it were being his personal. If, even so, there is appreciable cost in carrying out this kind of obligation, the utilista could implement in advance of the Civil Court docket First Corridor to desire that the dominus be compelled to add a portion of the expense. In such a scenario the court will take into consideration, mostly, the deal of Emphyteusis entered into by the get-togethers, the remaining period of the grant, the total of ground-hire and other situations suitable to the demand from customers.

The utilista has a very broad right of disposing of the property held underneath Emphyteusis he may dispose of the emphyteutical tenement by suggests of a public deed which can both be an act inter vivos, i.e. manufactured all through his life time, or causa mortis, i.e. created soon after his demise, in this situation, by signifies of a will. The utilista may possibly provide the Emphyteusis to a 3rd social gathering for a specified amount of funds. Obviously, he will be offering the remainder of the emphyteutical period of time. Additionally, he may possibly grant the home at the time all over again less than Emphyteusis, recognized as sub-Emphyteusis, in which scenario, he will be obtaining a ground-hire himself.

This sort of alienation of residence does not call for the authorization or consent of the dominus, in possibly case. What’s more, the legal rights and obligations of the utilista will, upon transfer, be shifted on to the new utilista or sub-emphytheuta. The latter will only turn out to be the new utilista soon after the dominus has acknowledged him. Except if the new utilista is acknowledged to be incapable of carrying out his contractual obligations, the dominus can not refuse to admit him. In circumstances exactly where the dominus refuses to admit the new utilista, the latter will nonetheless continue being personally bound to the former for the payment of the ground-hire.

In the course of the time period of the running of the Emphyteusis, the utilista has the right to ‘alter the area of the tenement, offered he does not cause any deterioration thereof'(Report 1506(2)). So, if the utilista would like to make even further or to increase even further to the currently existing constructions on the land, he may possibly do so. What’s more, he is entitled to any ‘treasure trove’ that he may possibly come across on this kind of home. The dominus is not entitled to a share.

On expiration of the Emphyteusis, the utilista is certain by legislation to return the land or tenement with all the improvements manufactured during the many years through which the property was beneath Emphyteusis.

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