Kolkhoz Household

Kolkhoz Household


in the USSR, a family labor association of persons, all or a majority of whose able-bodied members belong to a kolkhoz, contribute their labor to kolkhoz production, and receive their basic income from the collectivized farm of the kolkhoz. In addition, they may also engage in personal subsidiary farming on a plot of land near the farmhouse (art. 7, the Constitution of the USSR [1936]).

According to the Model Kolkhoz Regulations of 1969, the family of a kolkhoz worker (that is, the kolkhoz household) receives a plot of land near the farmhouse, which it may use for a garden, orchard, or other needs. The plot may be up to 0.5 hectares (ha), including the land occupied by buildings. On irrigated land the maximum plot size is 0.2 ha. Within the limits of the established standards, the size of the plots is determined by the regulations of each kolkhoz. The kolkhozes are not obliged to adjust the sizes of the plots allocated under the Regulations of the Agricultural Artel (1935).

Under the Model Regulations (1969) the family of a kolkhoz worker may keep as personal property one cow and all of its calves that are less than one year old, one head of young cattle (up to two years old), one sow and any of its offspring that are under three months old or two pigs for fattening, up to ten sheep and goats (in any ratio of one species to the other), beehives, poultry, and rabbits. The kolkhoz provides the kolkhoz household with pasturage for cattle, allocates or sells fodder to kolkhoz members, and, under the procedure established on the kolkhoz, assists the kolkhoz workers in building and repairing their houses. In addition, the kolkhoz provides its members with free, immediate transportation of sick persons to medical institutions. Thus, the relationship between the kolkhoz and the kolkhoz household concerning auxiliary personal farming derives from membership in the kolkhoz and is realized in a legal form by the extension to kolkhoz members of a number of benefits and advantages that are not available to nonmembers.

According to the Civil Code of the RSFSR (art. 120) and the civil codes of the other Union republics, the property of the kolkhoz household belongs to all its members, who have the right of joint ownership. In other words, the possession, use, and disposal of the property is subject to the agreement of all household members. Disputes over the possession, use, or disposal of the property of a kolkhoz household are settled by the people’s court when a suit is brought by any member of the household who has reached the age of 16.

If one of its members leaves a kolkhoz household, the household property is reapportioned—that is, the share of the member who has left is determined, but a new kolkhoz household is not formed. The size of the share is based on the principle of equality: all members of the kolkhoz household, including those who have not reached maturity, as well as disabled and elderly persons, have an equal share. Particularly when several members leave a kolkhoz household, each one’s share in kind is determined in such a way that the household will not be deprived of the buildings, livestock and implements required for farming. If it is impossible to pay in kind the share of property owed to a member of the household, the value of the share may be paid in money.

Members of the household who have reached age 16 have the right to demand the apportionment of household property when they leave the household. When a kolkhoz household breaks up, its property is divided among the newly formed households according to the shares held by their members and the economic needs of each household. Only adult members of a kolkhoz household who are members of the kolkhoz have the right to demand the splitting of a kolkhoz household. The share of a member of a kolkhoz household is also established if a claim is brought against his property in court.

In accordance with the Law Concerning the Agricultural Tax (Vedomosti Verkhovnogo Soveta SSSR, no. 7, 1953), the kolkhoz household, as a separate subject of the law, must pay a tax at a fixed rate on each hundredth of a hectare used by it, regardless of its income. The kolkhoz household is also responsible for self-taxation and for compulsory insurance of household property.