Adverse Possession: Criminality trespass

Can a squatter rely upon conduct that amounts to a criminal offence as the basis for a claim in adverse possession? Alison Oldfield and Richard Jobes investigate ‘Until a claim in adverse possession is established however, the occupier of the land is, by definition, committing an unlawful – tortious – act of trespass.’The decision in …
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Break Clauses: Precision is key

Will the latest Court of Appeal decision leave tenants at breaking point? Helen Pickard considers the recent case of Friends Life ‘In Friends Life, Lewison LJ determined that while the meaning of the notice was clear and correct in all regards, the form of notice was non-compliant. There had to be strict compliance and, on …
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Competition Law: The fire and Furnace of land covenants

Andrew Francis and Suzanne Rab assess the first reported case on how competition law applies to land covenants ‘Ignorance is no defence. After more than three years since the Revocation Order it is now time for all property advisers and agents to become aware of Chapter I and its implications.’The town of Crawley lies on …
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Construction Focus: Net contribution clauses

John Starr reviews a Court of Appeal decision throwing further light on net contribution clauses ‘Indemnity insurers of professional consultants usually request that a net contribution clause is included in appointments and collateral warranties.’ Almost a year ago, this column reported on the first instance decision in West v Ian Finlay & Associates (A Firm) …
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Planning Update: Challenging planning decisions

Understanding the planning process is vital if contracts conditional on planning permission are to accurately reflect the parties’ intentions. Tim Willis and Rebecca Bergin discuss the judicial review and statutory challenge process ‘The Planning Court is now up and running and is anticipated to deal with 400 planning cases each year.’ The planning system, with …
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Landlord Repairs And Quiet Enjoyment: Parity not priority is Paramount

Nikolas Ireland analyses a case requiring the court to balance the competing interests of the parties to a lease ‘While the focus of the court was on the application for injunctive relief, one eye was firmly on the bigger picture and whether the covenant of quiet enjoyment would be breached by the landlord’s proposed method …
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Jackson Reforms: Not all bad news

The Jackson reforms to litigation cost management have been widely criticised, but Laura Odlind wonders if they could be of some benefit ‘The Jackson era may have some advantages. Having already had their costs scrutinised and examined through the lens of “proportionality”, the winning party may be in a stronger position to recover those costs …
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Business Tenancies: The periodic tenancy trap

Fiona Graham examines a decision clarifying the ‘limbo period’ which arises after a fixed-term lease expires while the parties are in negotiations for a new lease ‘In order to terminate an annual tenancy, the tenant must give at least six months’ notice to terminate on an anniversary of the tenancy.’ A fixed-term lease comes to …
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