- The person in whom is vested the ownership, dominion, or title of property; proprietor. He who has dominion of a thing, real or personal, corporeal or incorporeal, which he has a right to enjoy and do with as he pleases, even to spoil or destroy it, as far as the law permits, unless he be prevented by some agreement or covenant which restrains his right. The term is, however, a nomen generalissimum, and its meaning is to be gathered from the connection in which it is used, and from the subject-matter to which it is applied.The primary meaning of the word as applied to land is one who owns the fee and who has the right to dispose of the property, but the term also includes one having a possessory right to land or the person occupying or cultivating it.The term "owner" is used to indicate a person in whom one or more interests are vested for his own benefit. The person in whom the interests are vested has "title" to the interests whether he holds them for his own benefit or for the benefit of another.Thus the term "title," unlike "ownership," is a colorless word; to say without more that a person has title to certain property does not indicate whether he holds such property for his own benefit or as trustee. Restatement, Second, Trusts, No. 2, Comment (d); Restatement of Property, No. 10.See also ownership@ equitable ownerOne who is recognized in equity as the owner of property, because the real and beneficial use and title belong to him, although the bare legal title is vested in another, e.g., a trustee for his benefit. One who has a present title in land which will ripen into legal ownership upon the performance of conditions subsequent. There may therefore be two "owners" in respect of the same property, one the nominal or legal owner, the other the beneficial or equitable owner.+ equitable ownerOne who is recognized in equity as owner of the property, because real and beneficial use and title belong to him, even though bare legal title is invested in another. Levin v. Carney, 120 N.E.2d 92, 96, 161 Ohio St. 513See also beneficial owner.@ general and beneficial ownerThe person whose interest is primarily one of possession and enjoyment in contemplation of an ultimate absolute ownership;-not the person whose interest is primarily in the enforcement of a collateral pecuniary claim, and does not contemplate the use or enjoyment of the property as such.See also beneficial owner.@ general ownerHe who has the primary or residuary title to it; as distinguished from a special owner, who has a special interest in the same thing, amounting to a qualified ownership, such, for example, as a bailee's lien. One who has both the right of property and of possession.@ joint ownersTwo or more persons who jointly own and hold title to property, e.g., joint tenants, and also partners and tenants in common. In its most comprehensive sense, the term embraces all cases where the property in question is owned by two or more persons regardless of the special nature of their relationship or how it came into being. An estate by entirety is a "joint ownership" of a husband and wife as at common law notwithstanding legislative enactments touching joint tenancy. Cullum v. Rice, 236 Mo.App. 1113, 162 S.W.2d 342, 344.See also joint estate- tenancy.@ legal ownerOne who is recognized and held responsible by the law as the owner of property. In a more particular sense, one in whom the legal title to real estate is vested, but who holds it in trust for the benefit of another, the latter being called the "equitable owner".+ legal ownerThe term has come to be used in technical contrast to the equitable owner, and not as opposed to an illegal owner. The legal owner has title to the property, although the title may actually carry no rights to the property other than a lienSee also beneficial owner@ part ownersJoint owners; co-owners; those who have shares of ownership in the same thing.See joint owners, above.@ record ownerThis term, particularly used in statutes requiring notice of tax delinquency or sale, means the owner of record, not the owner described in the tax roll; the owner of the title at time of notice.+ record ownerThe person in whose name stock shares are registered on the records of the corporation. A record owner is treated as the owner of the shares by the corporation whether or not that person is the beneficial owner of the shares. As regards real property ownership, is person in whose name title appears on official records in contrast with one who claims title through unrecorded documents@ reputed ownerOne who has to all appearances the title to, and possession of, property; one who, from all appearances, or from supposition, is the owner of a thing. He who has the general credit or reputation of being the owner or proprietor of goods.@- riparian owner@ sole and unconditional ownerAn expression commonly used in fire insurance policies, in which the word "sole" means that no one else has any interest in the property as owner, and "unconditional" means that the quality of the estate is not limited or affected by any condition. To be "unconditional and sole," the interest or ownership of the insured must be completely vested, not contingent or conditional, nor in common or jointly with others, but of such nature that the insured must alone sustain the entire loss if the property is destroyed; and this is so whether the title is legal or equitable. It is sufficient to satisfy the requirements of "sole and unconditional ownership" that the insured is the sole equitable owner and has the full equitable title. It is enough that the insured is equitably entitled to immediate and absolute legal ownership. The term contemplates beneficial and practical proprietorship and not necessarily technical title.@ special ownerOne who has a special interest in an article of property, amounting to a qualified ownership of it, such, for example, as a bailee's lien; as distinguished from the general owner, who has the primary or residuary title to the same thing. Some person holding property with the consent of, and as representative of, the actual owner@
Black's law dictionary. HENRY CAMPBELL BLACK, M. A.. 1990.