BOOK II PROPERTY, OWNERSHIP, AND ITS MODIFICATIONS
TITLE II OWNERSHIP
CHAPTER 1 Ownership in General
Ownership may be exercised over things or rights.
The owner has the right to enjoy and dispose of a thing, without other limitations than those established by law. The owner has also a right of action against the holder and possessor of the thing in order to recover it.
The owner or lawful possessor of a thing has the right to exclude any person from the enjoyment and disposal thereof. For this purpose, he may use such force as may be reasonably necessary to repel or prevent an actual or threatened unlawful physical invasion or usurpation of his property.
Every owner may enclose or fence his land or tenements by means of walls, ditches, live or dead hedges, or by any other means without detriment to servitudes constituted thereon. (388)
The owner of a thing cannot make use thereof in such manner as to injure the rights of a third person.
The owner of a thing has no right to prohibit the interference of another with the same, if the interference is necessary to avert an imminent danger and the threatened damage, compared to the damage arising to the owner from the interference, is much greater. The owner may demand from the person benefited indemnity for the damage to him.
Actual possession under claim of ownership raises disputable presumption of ownership. The true owner must resort to judicial process for the recovery of the property.
In an action to recover, the property must be identified, and the plaintiff must rely on the strength of his title and not on the weakness of the defendant’s claim.
No person shall be deprived of his property except by competent authority and for public use and always upon payment of just compensation. Should this requirement be not first complied with, the courts shall protect and, in a proper case, restore the owner in his possession.
When any property is condemned or seized by competent authority in the interest of health, safety or security, the owner thereof shall not be entitled to compensation, unless he can show that such condemnation or seizure is unjustified.
The owner of a parcel of land is the owner of its surface and of everything under it, and he can construct thereon any works or make any plantations and excavations which he may deem proper, without detriment to servitudes and subject to special laws and ordinances. He cannot complain of the reasonable requirements of aerial navigation.
Hidden treasure belongs to the owner of the land, building, or other property on which it is found. Nevertheless, when the discovery is made on the property of another, or of the State or any of its subdivisions, and by chance, one- half thereof shall be allowed to the finder. If the finder is a trespasser, he shall not be entitled to any share of the treasure.
If the things found be of interest to science or the arts, the State may acquire them at their just price, which shall be divided in conformity with the rule stated.
By treasure is understood, for legal purposes, any hidden and unknown deposit of money, jewelry, or other precious objects, the lawful ownership of which does not appear.