Legal Definition and Related Resources of Encumbrance

Meaning of Encumbrance

A claim , lien or liability attached to property . A burden upon land, depreciative of its value , such as a lien, easements or servitude, which though adverse to the interests of the land owner , does not conflict with his conveyance of land in fee. Evans v Faught, 42 Cai. Rptr. 133, 231 C.A.2d698. One who has an Encumbrance on property is called an encumbrancer. An encumbrance on realty and chattels is not extinguished by the mere act of transfer of ownership. A charge , a mortgage , an easement to which the property is subject , a claim for mechanic ‘s lien , and an outstanding dower interest , are all examples of encumbrances.

Synonyms of Encumbrance


  • burden
  • charge
  • claim
  • curb
  • difficulty
  • disadvantage
  • drawback
  • hampering
  • hindering
  • hindrance
  • hitch
  • hurdle
  • impediment
  • impedimentum
  • imposition
  • inconvenience
  • infliction
  • interference
  • liability
  • lien
  • lien on an estate
  • load
  • mortgage
  • obstacle
  • obstruction
  • onus
  • oppression
  • pressure
  • restriction
  • retardation
  • stay
  • stop
  • stoppage
  • Associated Concepts: easements
  • mortgage foreign phrases: Transit terra cum onere
  • Land passes subject to any encumbrances affecting it

Related Entries of Encumbrance in the Encyclopedia of Law Project

Browse or run a search for Encumbrance in the American Encyclopedia of Law, the Asian Encyclopedia of Law, the European Encyclopedia of Law, the UK Encyclopedia of Law or the Latin American and Spanish Encyclopedia of Law.

Encumbrance in Historical Law

You might be interested in the historical meaning of this term. Browse or search for Encumbrance in Historical Law in the Encyclopedia of Law.

Legal Abbreviations and Acronyms

Search for legal acronyms and/or abbreviations containing Encumbrance in the Legal Abbreviations and Acronyms Dictionary.

Related Legal Terms

You might be also interested in these legal terms:

Mentioned in these terms

Clear, Cloud On Title, Equitable Lien, Incumbrance, , Prior, Redeem, Tacking.

Translate Encumbrance from English to Spanish

Translation of Encumbrance, with examples. More about free online translation into Spanish of Gravmen, carga, hipoteca, and other legal terms is available here.

See also

Incumbrance in the American legal Encyclopedia
A burden or charge on property, either real property… (Read more)

English Legal System: Encumbrance

In the context of the English law, A Dictionary of Law provides the following legal concept of Encumbrance : (encumbrance, incumbrance)


A right or interest in land owned by someone other than the owner of the land itself; examples include easements, leases, mortgages, and restrictive covenants. When title to the land is .registered (See land registration), encumbrances other than minor and overriding interests are recorded in the Charges Register. Certain encumbrances affecting unregistered land will only be enforceable against third parties if registered at the Land Charges Registry.

See also registration of encumbrances.



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