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Law Notes Land Law Notes

Concurrent Interests Notes

Updated Concurrent Interests Notes

Land Law Notes

Land Law

Approximately 987 pages

Land Law notes fully updated for recent exams at Oxford and Cambridge. These notes cover all the LLB land law cases and so are perfect for anyone doing an LLB in the UK or a great supplement for those doing LLBs abroad, whether that be in Ireland, Hong Kong or Malaysia (University of London).

These were the best Land Law notes the director of Oxbridge Notes (an Oxford law graduate) could find after combing through dozens of LLB samples from outstanding law students with the highest results...

The following is a more accessible plain text extract of the PDF sample above, taken from our Land Law Notes. Due to the challenges of extracting text from PDFs, it will have odd formatting:

Table of Contents

Summary 2

Textbook 4

Successive and concurrent interests 4

Tenancy in common/joint tenancy 4

Trusts of land 9

Cases 10

malayan credit v jack chia-mph 10

facts 10

held 10

judgment 10

Nielson-Jones v Fedden 11

Facts 11

Held 11

Judgement 11

Burgess v Rawnsley 12

Facts 12

Held 12

Judgment 12

Harris v Goddard 13

Facts 13

Held 14

Judgments 14

Gore and Snell v Carpenter 14

Facts 14

Held 14

Judgments 14

Kinch v Bullard 15

Facts 15

Held 15

Judgments 15

Articles 16

Thompson 16

Pritchard 16

Thompson 17

Pritchard (Nielson-Jones review) 17



Statute Provision Applications
LPA 1925 s 184 Where multiple joint tenants die in a single incident the oldest is presumed to have died first Re Bate – Jenkins J held that this provision applies even where there is evidence that the two people died at the same time
Hickman v Peacey – deceased persons were killed by a bomb, but HL held that the section still applied (Viscount Simon LC dissenting – a rule that where it is uncertain which horse passed the finish line first the prize goes to the younger horse doesn’t mean that in a dead-heat the prize can’t be shared)
LPA 1925 s 36(2) Notice in writing is required to sever joint tenancies of legal estates vested in the joint tenants beneficially


Subject Case Held Treatment
Words of severance rebut presumption of joint tenancy Robertson v Fraser Lord Hatherley LC: “anything which in the slightest degree indicates an intention to divide the property must be held to abrogate the idea of a joint tenancy, and to create a tenancy in common”. Words like “participate”, “amongst” and “respectively” indicate such intention. Arguable that choice of words is likely random and not a sign of intention.
Equitable presumptions of tenancy in common Malayan Credit v Jack Chia-MPH Lord Brightman: where premises are held as joint tenancy at law for holders’ several individual business purposes, it can still be a tenancy in common in Equity (though it is not partnership property) – thus the three classes of Equitable exceptions are fluid Lord Brightman placed much emphasis on the unequal contribution of both parties – would the outcome be different if it had been equal? (seems arbitrary to answer in the affirmative)
Methods of severing joint tenancies Williams v Hensman

Page-Wood VC: three methods exist to sever joint tenancies:

  1. Act operating on severer’s share

  2. Mutual agreement

  3. Course of dealing suggesting of intention

Sir John Pennycuick in Burgess said that the importance of agreement is that it evinces the common intention of parties; it seems that it can be subsumed under the third head, although he just says that the third head is wider than the second.

Lawton LJ says that these methods are still valid after 1925 because s36(2)’s reference to ‘other methods’ includes them

Nielson-Jones v Fedden

Walton J: a unilateral declaration cannot sever because 1) it would eliminate the need to convey to trustees and 2) s36(2) would be pointless/restrictive.

S36(2) only applies to real and not personal property – proceeds of sale cannot be severed by writing

Rejected by Burgess v Rawnsley and Harris v Goddard
Burgess v Rawnsley

Denning: A unilateral declaration can sever as long as it is communicated to the other party. S36(2) applies to real and personal property because:

  1. (Denning) It would be absurd to create an anomaly

  2. (Pennycuick) The language of the statute suggests that the framers contemplated that writing was already sufficient to sever interests in personal property

  3. (Browne) The purpose of the provision was to declare a new method of severance, not distinguish between realty and personalty – but if the anomaly does exist, it should be corrected ASAP

Harris v Goddard Lawton LJ: the three methods in Williams v Hensman are still valid; notice by writing per s36(2) must evince present and not future intention to sever
Gore and Snell v Carpenter Negotiations are not the same as course of dealing – a course of dealing is where parties over the years treat the interest as tenancy in common and not joint
Kinch v Bullard Notice is ‘given’ for the purpose of S36(2) when it is delivered to the last known place of abode of the intended recipient (per S196) and it is unnecessary that he read/received it.


Author Idea Treatment
Thompson Joint tenancies are often created in family homes because solicitors asked the parties whether they wanted the other to have the house if one died. Parties didn’t usually contemplate equal division of proceeds upon sale. This warrants abolishing the beneficial joint tenancy.
Pritchard Many people are attracted by the idea of survivorship and they should be able to get it without having to draft a will – unsuccessful marriages shouldn’t dictate the law and aggrieved parties should be able to sever anyway


Successive and concurrent interests

  • Successive interests don’t include leases because:

    • Lessor doesn’t lose the fee simple absolute in possession and this interest is not postponed until lessee’s interest lapses

    • (Most important) Successive interests are subject to statutory regulation allowing land to be sold free from these interests, and the value of leases requires land not to be sold free of them

  • Concurrent interests: joint tenancy and tenancy in common (eg. co-ownership of the family home – increasingly common)

  • Legal regulation

    • Controversial because traditionally wealthy families owned land subject to complex settlements, but this is difficult for purchasers (especially if interests involve people unborn or children)

    • Solution: overreaching

    • 19C reforms made overreaching available in all situations involving successive interests (was controversial because land was still seen as the basis of power and wealth so families didn’t like it when their interests in land was converted to an interest in a fund)

    • 1925 legislation introduced overreaching into concurrent...

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