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Chapter

Cover Textbook on Land Law

21. Special rights in relation to the family home  

Course-focused and comprehensive, the Textbook on Land Law provides an accessible overview of one key area on the law curriculum. This chapter brings together some matters about the family home, and provides additional information about certain statutory rights which members of a family may have in respect of their homes, contrasting the rights of married couples and civil partners with the more limited rights of cohabitants. In conclusion, the chapter outlines past proposals for reform of the law relating to cohabitants’ rights in the family home. It illustrates the issues considered by reference to 11 Trant Way (occupied by Mr and Mrs Mould), 12 Trant Way (occupied by Mildred Mumps and Henry Newton) and 2 Trant Way (occupied by Barbara Bell and her father, Bob).

Chapter

Cover The Principles of Land Law

1. Introduction—Principles and Themes of Land Law  

This introductory chapter provides an overview of the land law system. The operation of the land law rules can be split into three central questions: first, the content and nature of individual rights in land — both ownership-estates and interests in another's land; second, the method of creation and transfer of these individual rights; and third, the interaction between these rights and the rights of others. The law's answer to these questions is shaped by the social context within which the rules operate, and by the principles of land law. These principles are certainty; sensitivity to context; transactability; systemic and individual effects; and the importance of recognising social effects. The chapter then considers the logic of the land law system. Understanding this logic begins with understanding the terminology, and this terminology is nowhere more unhelpful but essential than in the distinction between legal and equitable rights, and in the concept of ownership.

Book

Cover The Principles of Land Law
The Principles of Land Law provides a framework through which readers can gain a sophisticated understanding of the modern land law system. Firstly, the text explains the key learning objectives. Principles are summarised to conclude each chapter with a comprehensive overview of the topic at hand. Key cases are explained while examples illustrate problems and possible solutions. The aim is to ensure that readers understand how to apply the core principles to land law scenarios accurately, while also conducting their own critical analysis of the subject area. Topics covered include personal and property rights in land, land registration, adverse possession, freehold, leases and mortgages, ownership, and human rights and property law.

Chapter

Cover Textbook on Land Law

19. Proprietary estoppel  

Course-focused and comprehensive, the Textbook on Land Law provides an accessible overview of one key area on the law curriculum. This chapter examines the doctrine of proprietary estoppel. It discusses the nature of proprietary estoppel; the expectations of future rights; the criteria for proprietary estoppel; essential elements; satisfying the equity; the nature of the equity arising from estoppel; and the relationship between proprietary estoppel and constructive trusts.

Chapter

Cover The Principles of Land Law

17. Property Law and Human Rights  

This chapter reflects on the interaction between property law and human rights law. Property law and human rights can interact in a number of different ways. The major division distinguishes those cases where human rights arguments are made to ‘bolster’ an existing property law-based argument, and those where the human rights argument is made to attempt to limit the scope of a property right. Thus, one can see the rules of property law and human rights working together, or they can be in conflict. The chapter first identifies the sources of human rights in English law, and then considers which rights are particularly important in relation to property law. It also looks at the mechanics by which key human rights interact with property law, and examines the question of horizontal effect in that context. Finally, the chapter addresses how human rights arguments have had influence in particular areas of land law, focusing on adverse possession, leases, actions for possession against trespassers, and mortgages.

Chapter

Cover The Principles of Land Law

2. Personal and Property Rights in Land  

This chapter explains the nature of land as a legal concept, as well as the nature of rights in land. Land includes both corporeal things — such as land and buildings — and incorporeal things, such as rights over land. Property rights in relation to land come in two forms: estates and interests. Estates are rights which a person holds in their ‘own land’, while interests are rights which a person holds in relation to another's land. Both of these are proprietary; proprietary interests are those rights which are capable of having third party effects. Therefore, the crucial distinction between personal and property rights is about the effect that these rights can have on third parties. The chapter then looks at the numerus clausus (closed list) of property rights. If a right is not part of this list, then it is licence. Licences are the generic category of rights that relate to land but which are not property rights. The four categories of licence include estoppel licences, bare licences, contractual licences, and licences coupled with an interest. The chapter concludes by exploring the concept of relativity of title in English land law.

Chapter

Cover Textbook on Land Law

2. Interests in land  

Course-focused and comprehensive, the Textbook on Land Law provides an accessible overview of one key area on the law curriculum. This chapter explains how one person may have rights over land owned by another. It identifies the people who may have rights over Trant House—rights that could be enforced not only against Vernon, the fee simple owner, but also against anyone who acquires the property from him. It covers the distinction between legal and equitable interests in land; examples of legal interests; examples of equitable interests, including trusts; modern approaches to protecting interests in land; the distinction between ‘real’ and ‘personal’ property and different types of ‘personal property’; and briefly touches on human rights.

Chapter

Cover Textbook on Land Law

22. Mortgages and charges  

Course-focused and comprehensive, the Textbook on Land Law provides an accessible overview of one key area on the law curriculum. This chapter examines the types of mortgages or charges of land and interests in land which may be created. It also considers the rules regarding their administration and their protection against later acquirers of interests in the land. The discussions cover legal mortgages and charges; equitable mortgages; the rights of the mortgagor; the rights of the mortgagee; mortgagee’s remedies; the right of certain third parties to redeem; the liability of mortgagees, receivers, and valuers for fraud or negligence; the end of a mortgage.

Chapter

Cover The Principles of Land Law

18. Torts  

This chapter discusses two torts relevant to the operation of rights in land: trespass and nuisance. Trespass to land is the unlawful interference with or incursion on another's possession of land. It is not a tort which protects ownership; its operation is relative. Thus, a trespasser can themselves sue a subsequent trespasser on the basis of this tort, if the first trespasser has gone into possession of the land. Trespass in this sense is a tort against possession of land. Unlike trespass, however, the law relating to nuisance is complex and even incoherent. In its absolute basic terms, nuisance is the tort of interference with another's reasonable use or enjoyment of their land, usually as a result of an unreasonable use of neighbouring land. The chapter then assesses the relationship between these torts and rights in land. It also explores the remedies which are available in response to such tortious actions.

Book

Cover Complete Land Law

Barbara Bogusz and Roger Sexton

Titles in the Complete series combine extracts from a wide range of primary materials with clear explanatory text to provide readers with a complete introductory resource. This edition of Complete Land Law combines clear commentary and explanation of the subject in relation to land law with essential extracts from legislation and cases. A wide range of extracts is included, providing convenient and reliable access to all the materials needed. The book employs a number of pedagogical features aimed at explaining land law in a straightforward way; it includes diagrams to explain key procedures, definitions throughout the book to explain legal terms, case studies, thinking points with suggested answers, review questions, and summary points at the end of the chapter to support the student new to the subject. This edition discusses some of the latest case law in the area of land law, including: the Supreme Court’s decision in Alexander Devine Children’s Cancer Trust v Housing Solutions Ltd (2020) on the modification of restrictive freehold covenants; the High Court’s decision in Howe v Gossop (2021) on proprietary estoppel; and Ali v Dinc (2020) on priorities.

Chapter

Cover The Principles of Land Law

14. Estate Contracts, Options to Purchase, and Rights of Pre-Emption  

This chapter addresses estate contracts, options to purchase, and rights of pre-emption. ‘Estate contracts’ is a generic term given to contracts relating to the intended transfer of estates in land, i.e. the freehold and leasehold estate. The consequence of an estate contract varies depending upon the kind of interest which it is intended will be created and the precise nature of the agreement reached between the parties. This can lead to some conceptual difficulties. Meanwhile, options to purchase and rights of pre-emption are two kinds of estate contract. Both involve an agreement between a freehold or leasehold proprietor and a potential purchaser in relation to that estate. An option to purchase entitles its holder to demand that the proprietor sell that estate to them, usually within a defined time period, for a pre-determined or determinable price. The right of pre-emption is, in effect, a right of first refusal. It does not allow its holder to force the proprietor of the estate in land to sell, but means that if that person does decide to sell, it must first be offered to the holder of the pre-emption right.

Chapter

Cover The Principles of Land Law

15. Priorities  

This chapter explores the issue of how property rights interact, and how conflicts between rights-holders are resolved. This is not a question of competing validity, but rather, of competing priorities. Understanding how priority rules operate is one of the most significant elements of land law. The chapter first explains the general priority rules for registered land. It then looks at the special priority rules in place for cases involving dispositions of registered land; for cases involving registered charges; and for cases involving first registrations. The chapter also considers some exceptional cases where these normal priority rules are supplanted by rules bespoke to particular scenarios. Here, it discusses priority searches; waiver and consent; the special rules relating to acquisition mortgages; the registration gap; overreaching; and subrogation. Finally, the chapter examines the consequences of a loss of priority.

Chapter

Cover The Principles of Land Law

5. Land Registration  

This chapter explores how the English land law land registration system works in practice. The land registration system achieves three goals. The first is as a method of controlling the way in which rights are created. The second is in terms of managing the effect of such rights, once they have been created. The third is as a means to regulate the interactions between different proprietary rights which exist in relation to the same piece of land. The chapter considers the first two functions: mode of rights creation and effect of rights creation. It then looks at what happens when these functions go wrong within the system — how do the principles of registered land interact with the inevitable reality of both human error and human creativity? In answering this issue, the chapter considers how the register is rectified and altered. Finally, it examines potential reforms, including those proposed by the Law Commission, and the possibility of the advent of e-conveyancing. The Law Commission has now begun the process of bringing about reform of the Land Registration Act 2002 to allow for the smoother operation of the registration system in cases of error.

Chapter

Cover The Principles of Land Law

6. Adverse Possession  

This chapter focuses on adverse possession, which is the obtention of title to land by means of possession without permission. It is the natural and logical consequence of the combination of the principle of relativity of title and of limitation (time limits) on actions. The chapter then analyses the rules relating to adverse possession, considering both unregistered land and registered land. Adverse possession is one of the few areas where the unregistered land rules are still regularly taught. The chapter also looks at the special situation which emerges when the rules on adverse possession interact with leases. Moreover, it examines the relationship between the adverse possession rules and criminal law. Finally, the chapter explores the justifications or explanations behind adverse possession, including the relationship between these rules and human rights.

Chapter

Cover The Principles of Land Law

8. Proprietary Estoppel  

This chapter addresses proprietary estoppel, which is one of the land law doctrines which allows for the creation of rights in land without a written contract or other formal document. It arises when a person (the promisor) makes a promise to another (the promisee) in relation to their land, and then attempts to go back on that promise in circumstances where it was unfair to do so. Given the general policy of formality, with its associated benefits of certainty and clarity, one must consider the rules relating to proprietary estoppel from the perspective not only of when proprietary estoppel generates rights in land, but also why it does so. This is particularly important in relation to estoppel since it represents a general and potentially broad exception to the formality rules discussed in the fourth chapter. There are three forms of proprietary estoppel: estoppel by representation, estoppel by acquiescence, and estoppel by assurance or promise. The chapter then discusses the consequences of estoppel arising in terms of remedies and effects on third parties. It also examines the relationship between estoppel and formalities, and estoppel and constructive trusts.

Chapter

Cover Textbook on Land Law

21. Special rights in relation to the family home  

Course-focused and comprehensive, the Textbook on Land Law provides an accessible overview of one key area on the law curriculum. This chapter brings together some matters about the family home, and provides additional information about certain statutory rights which members of a family may have in respect of their homes, contrasting the rights of married couples and civil partners with the more limited rights of cohabitants. In conclusion, the chapter outlines proposals for reform of the law relating to cohabitants’ rights in the family home.

Chapter

Cover Land Law

3. Personal Rights and Property Rights  

This chapter examines property rights in land and personal rights that may allow a party to make a particular use of land. It first considers the distinction between personal rights and property rights before addressing the content question: whether the type of right claimed by a party counts as a property right. To answer that question, a distinction is made between different types of property right. The most important distinction is between legal property rights, on the one hand, and equitable property rights, on the other. The chapter also discusses licences to use land and contrasts their operation and effect with those of property rights in land. It highlights the nature of licences and the controversy over contractual and estoppel licences and concludes with an analysis of the relationship between the law of leases and of licence.

Chapter

Cover Thompson's Modern Land Law

3. Law, Equity, and Human Rights  

In addition to the concepts of tenure and estates, another fundamental aspect of England’s Land Law is the impact of equity. The intervention of equity was originally based upon the need to enforce obligations of conscience and to redress defects in the common law, and also gave rise to the trust. But while the trust might be equity’s greatest creation, the intervention of equity also addressed other areas of Land Law where the common law position was considered to be defective or oppressive. A notable example is the law of mortgages. Aside from modifying the common law, equity also recognized other rights that did not result in the beneficial entitlement to the land. This chapter discusses the historical basis of equity in England, the creation of equitable rights, the enforceability of equitable and legal rights, and human rights.

Book

Cover Land Law Concentrate
Each Concentrate revision guide is packed with essential information, key cases, revision tips, exam Q&As, and more. Concentrates show you what to expect in a law exam, what examiners are looking for, and how to achieve extra marks. Land Law Concentrate covers the fundamental principles of this area of law and helps the reader to succeed in exams. The book starts by looking at proprietary rights. It goes on to distinguish between legal and equitable rights. It also looks at registered land, unregistered land, the freehold estate, the leasehold estate, and leasehold covenants. It also examines trusts of land, co-ownership, licences, proprietary estoppel, easements and profits, freehold covenants, and mortgages. This edition has been updated to include recent case law and exceptions to the principles of the Land Registration Act 2002.

Book

Cover Land Law

Ben McFarlane, Nicholas Hopkins, and Sarah Nield

Titles in the Core Text series take the reader straight to the heart of the subject, providing focused, concise, and reliable guides for students at all levels. This text incorporates a unique approach to land law which helps students understand how rules work in isolation as well as how they interlink. This approach provides the tools to accomplish high-level analysis quickly. Significant cases are emphasized here and are used to illustrate rules. Topics covered include: an introduction to what land law is, human rights, personal and property rights, and registered title. Chapters also look at the acquisition of equitable interests, trusts of land, leases, mortgages, security interest in land, easements, freehold covenants, and the defences question. Finally, the text ends with an overview of concepts and contexts.