Land Rights for children, youth and orphans

The constitution of Kenya defines an ‘adult’ as an individual who has attained the age of eighteen years. For the purpose of determining rights accruing to the youth, there is need to appreciate that the constitution regards youths as adults and thus;
• Each youth has the right to ownership, access and control of land and property.
• Though the right to inherit from their parents is discretionary, in the event of inheritance by the siblings, both daughters and sons have equal rights.

Orphans have the right to access and use their parents land and property whether or not it is held in trust by an appointed and responsible adult member of the immediate family. Upon reaching the age of 18, they have the right to be registered as the rightful owners of land and the properties previously held by their deceased parents.

A ‘child” means an individual who has not attained the age of eighteen years in Kenya. Generally, children cannot own land or property in their own right as children. However, land and property can be held on trust for their benefit and use.