Duhaime's Law Dictionary


Personalty Definition:

Personal property.

As realty is used to refer to real property, personalty is used in some jurisdictions to refer to personal property. Other synonymous terms include moveables (or movables) and chattels.

In law, disputes often erupt over the qualification of something as either realty or personalty as the consequences can be significant from a tax or real estate contract litigation. While the law books are full of examples, here are some, as a sample (caution: each case turns on its own facts):

  • Bowling alley and racks (personalty)
  • Portable building (personalty)
  • Shares (personalty)
  • Until harvested from the ground, oil and gas is realty and not personalty
  • Machinery (personalty)
  • Fixture (realty)

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