Chattel is a catch-all category of property associated with movable goods. At common law, chattel included all property other than real property. Examples include leases, animals, and money. In modern usage, chattel usually only refers to tangible movable personal property.
In the field of property law, separate bodies of law developed to handle chattel property and real property. For example, the tort of conversion is only applicable to chattel property, not real property.
[Last updated in July of 2022 by the Wex Definitions Team]