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Pascoe v Turner

[1979] 1 WLR 431

Case summary last updated at 09/01/2020 16:28 by the Oxbridge Notes in-house law team.

Judgement for the case Pascoe v Turner

Mrs Turner had been Mr Pascoe’s housekeeper and subsequently cohabited with him. After ten years of living together, he eventually informed her that he was leaving her to move in with a new woman. Mrs Turner was very distressed but was somewhat consoled when Mr Pascoe informed her clearly, in front of witnesses, that the house and everything in it was hers. She made several improvements to the house, incurring expense. He then told her that he was determining her license to remain and she had to leave within 2 months. CA was a clear case of proprietary estoppel and the minimum equity to do justice to her was to order the conveyance of the property as he had promised. 
Cumming Bruce LJ: In determining the appropriate measure of relief, “the court should consider all the circumstances, and Mrs. Turner having at law no perfected gift or licence other than a licence revocable at will, the court must decide what is the minimum equity to do justice to her having regard to the way in which she changed her position for the worse by reason of the acquiescence and encouragement of the legal owner.” i.e. whatever is equitable in the circumstances. In this case, granting her a licence to remain would be inadequate since Mr. Pascoe could sell the house and a new purchaser would not necessarily be bound to honour her interest. 

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