Curtesy Initiate Law and Legal Definition

At common law, a husband has by right of marriage, an estate of freehold in his wife's land, to endure till his/her death, and he is said to be seised jointly with her. This right is until an issue is born to the marriage who might possibly inherit the land. After the birth of such issue, the husband has an estate, known as the estate by the curtesy initiate, which will endure until his death, and which, in case he survives his wife, becomes an estate by the curtesy consummate.

As soon as a child is born, the father began to have a permanent interest in those lands of his wife in which she was seised of an estate of inheritance and he will be called tenant by the curtesy initiate. This estate being once vested in him by the birth of the child was not suffered to determine by the subsequent death or coming of age of the child.

The estate by the curtesy initiate is a freehold estate which the husband has power to convey and which is subject to his debts and to sale under execution against him.