Constructive trusts: Keeping up with the Jones

Naveed Ali outlines the development of the constructive trust principle to aid cohabitees ‘The court should establish the intentions of the parties with evidence; where intention cannot be inferred, the court may impute an intention which the parties may never have founded.’ The regulation of proprietary rights after a breakdown of marriage is extensive: the …
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Financial provison: Behind the scenes

Amy Harris analyses a case involving the consideration of a resulting trust, inheritance prospects and whether support from a third party could be inferred ‘The husband did not have a beneficial interest in the former matrimonial home as it was subject to a resulting trust and therefore not a matrimonial resource available for distribution.’ In …
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Cheung & ors v Worldcup Investments Inc & ors Hong Kong Court of Final Appeal

Wills & Trusts Law Reports | Web Only

O’Kelly v Davies [2014] EWCA Civ 1606

Wills & Trusts Law Reports | March 2016 #157

This appeal concerned a dispute over the beneficial ownership of the property whose legal title was at all times held by the appellant alone. At trial, the judge made the following findings:

  1. (i) A former property had been purchased in the joint names of the respondent and appellant in 1987.
  2. (ii) In 1991 the legal estate in that property was transferred into the sole name of the appellant to allow her to claim benefits as though she was a single woman living alone. The outstanding mortgage on that property at the time was converted to an endowment secured by a policy...

Co-Ownership: Inference, imputation and child maintenance

Barnes v Phillips explores the circumstances in which the beneficial shares of unmarried co-owners should be varied, as Mark Simeon Jones explains ‘This evolution of the modern law has been marked by two significant milestones; first, the judgment of the House of Lords in Stack v Dowden, and second, the judgment of the Supreme Court …
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Co-Ownership: Share with care

Sukhninder Panesar discusses Barnes v Phillips [2015], which has lessons on the role of inference and imputation in shared ownership disputes ‘An inference is an important exercise in establishing whether the parties’ original beneficial ownership has changed, and imputation is integral to establishing the exact shares once a finding of change in intention is established.’ …
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Frame v Rai [2012] BCSC 1876

Wills & Trusts Law Reports | November 2015 #154

The case concerned a dispute over ownership of a property. The property was registered in the name of the deceased, his sister (the plaintiff) and his wife (the defendant) as tenants in common. The plaintiff claimed that she was an owner of a one-half interest in the property based on an agreement entered into between her, the deceased and other family members at the time of purchase of the property in 1994. The defendant asserted that she and the deceased’s estate were solely the beneficial owners of the property, claiming that the reason the plaintiff was included as an owner on ...

Common Intention Constructive Trusts: The role of illegality

Sukhninder Panesar examines a case where one of the beneficiaries to a common intention constructive trust of land had been involved in an illegal purpose ‘O’Kelly provides an excellent example of when a constructive trust will be imposed in cases where the legal title is taken in the sole name of one of the cohabiting …
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M v M & ors [2013] EWHC 2534 (Fam)

Wills & Trusts Law Reports | December 2013 #135

The transcript of this judgment is reported in part from para 164 onwards and starts with a discussion of the law. No part of the report provides a factual narrative.

Held (allowing the wife’s claim for financial relief):

The court had power on divorce to order a party to the marriage to transfer to the other party such property as may be so specified to which that party was entitled, either in possession or reversion. In this case almost all the wealth created by the husband during the course of the marriage was held through offshore company structures and the ques...

Trusts And Property: Declarations of trust in the family home

Mark Pawlowski considers the Court of Appeal’s decision in Pankhania v Chandegra, which discusses whether express declarations of trust are conclusive The Law Commission endorsed the conclusive nature of the declaration of trust in the context of transfers of title to joint owners, stating that, ‘it is essential that courts strictly enforce declarations of trust …
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