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Leases: Contracts and/or Property?
o o o
LPA 1925 s.1 (1) Only estates in land capable of subsisting or being conveyed by law are
? (a) An estate in fee simple absolute possession
? (b) A term of years absolute (2) Only interests over land which are capable of subsisting or of being conveyed or created at law are---
? (a) An easement, right, or privilege in or over land for an interest equivalent to an estate in fee simple absolute in possession or a term of years absolute;
? (b) A rentcharge in possession issuing out of or charged on land being either perpetual or for a term of years absolute; Statute implies through these sections that lease is a property right Smith: However, has long been recognised that leases are invariably contracts Albeit special in that a proprietary interest is conferred on the tenant. However, do constitute some exceptions to modern contracts b/c these rules are more recent and worked out after leases have been worked out.
? Millet LJ in Ingram v IRC :
Is easy to make too much of contractual nature of relationship o While many leases = contracts
? Does not follow that can simply treat leases as if contracts and no more.
What contract rules have been applied to leases?
Repudiatory Breach o Hussein v Mahlman : L leased house to T, and for 15 months of three year lease, failed to keep covenant to repair leading to serious defects in house. T tried to terminate lease for repudiatory breach.
? Seldey QC:
Serious breaches of certain duties interfere with central purpose of contract o Meaning that T ought to be able to accept repudiatory breach and end contract.
Misrepresentation and Mistake o Hammersmith and Fulham LBC v Monk : D was a co-habitee of flat with X granted by lease of HF. X left the flat and asked to be re-homed, agreeing with HF to terminate the lease w/o D's consent. D refused to leave flat.
? Lord Bridge:
No reason why question re: leases should receive any different answer in the context of the contractual relationship of landlord and tenant o than that which it would receive in any other contractual context.
To hold that A could not determine the contract at the end of any year without the concurrence of B would imply a potentially irrevocable contractual obligation o which would be such an improbable intention to impute to the parties
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