A more recent version of these Land Law Problem Question Framework notes – written by Oxford students – is available here.
The following is a more accessble 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:
Problem Question Notes
Legal v Equitable Rights
? Is proprietary right legal or equitable: (i) Is it capable of existing as legal or equitable?
? S1 LPA 1925 - rights which may be legal i. Estates - fee simple (freehold) & leasehold ii. Interests - easements, mortgages, rights of entry contained in legal lease &rentcharge (ii) Did it come into existence as legal or equitable right?
i. Legal -falls within s1 LPA 1925 + created by deed + registered in acc. w/LRA 2002
? if not registered = equitable (s7 & 27(1) LRA 2002) ii. Equitable - a proprietary right could be equitable for one of 3 reasons: i. not included in s1 (e.g. proprietary estoppel, restrictive covenant etc) ii. included in s1 but no deed used iii. included in s1 & deed used but no registration
= + created in writing OR satisfies conditions for prop. estoppel/implied trusts (CT/RT)
Effect of Legal & Equitable Rights (i) Unregistered land
? Legal right -binding on all disponees
? Equitable right a) Pre-1925 - binding on disponees, except BF purchaser for value of legal estate w/out notice b) Post 1925 - binding on disponees but there may be a defence (ii) Registered land
? Registered legal/equitable right in rem or overriding interest - binding on all disponees
? Once electronic conveyancing system is complete, may make distinction redundant
Unregistered Land Framework
? A transfers unregistered land to C = B's pre-existing legal property right will always bind C& his preexisting equitable right will bind C, unless C has a defence: (i) Scenario 1: B's equitable right is a registrable land charge and either a) B hasn't registered it (Midland Bank v Green - applies even against P w/actual notice, as long as s4 LCA 1972 is satisfied)); or b) B has registered it against incorrect name & C has requested a search against correct one (ii) Scenario 2: B's equitable interests is one of the following: a) Beneficial interest under trust b) Proprietary estoppel c) Equitable easement/restrictive covenant created pre Jan 1926-falls outside LCA 1972 (iii)
.... in which case it's governed by doctrine of notice?C has a defence to B's interest if he's a BF purchaser of legal estate w/out notice (defence not resurrected on subsequent sale to P w/notice)
? BF Purchaser requirements: (i) bona fide - acted in good faith in the purchase (ii) purchaser of value - acquired the estate by act of parties rather than by operation of law (e.g. no adverse possession or gift) (iii) of a Legal Estate - leasehold/freehold (iv) w/out notice: a. actual - matters of which C was aware (hearing rumours not sufficient - but will be for constructive notice) b. constructive - C failed to enquire & law fixed him w/ notice (s199 LPA&Kingsnorth Finance v Tizard) o C entitled to inspect deeds up to 15 years back; if unusual docs, possibly further o P needs to discover identities of occupiers & make enquiries to them - once a person's in possession, P has notice of all his rights, regardless of how unusual (Hunt v Luck) c. imputed - constructive notice of agent/solicitor imputed to P (if same transaction/not fraudulent)
= Can't use BF? Consider:
Problem Question Notes FHS 2012 (i) Did B consent out of his right by representing to C that he didn't have an interest? (Bristol & West Buildings v Henning)
= Yes = B's right is defeated (unless consent is vitiated ? see below) (ii) Did the seller, A, contract to sell to P1 and P2 inconsistently?
= Yes: P1's estate contract has priority Registered Land Framework
(i) A registers property for the 1st time ? Sch1 (overriding interests re 1st registration) (ii) A transfers registered land to C ? B's pre-existing interest (in rem) will affect C if (ss28, 30 LRA): (a) entered on the register (b) an overriding interest - Sch 3 (unregistered interests which override registered dispositions)
= Main overriding interests under Sch 3: i. Para 1 - lease not exceeding 7 years (can be registered if under 3 years ii.?
voluntarily by Notice - City Permanent BS v Miller) Para 2 - almost any right in rem of person in actual or apparent occupation at the time of disposition o "sufficiently proprietary rights" (National Provincial Bank v Ainsworth) o obvious on reasonable inspection + express undertaking (in context of CT such as Binnions, Ashburn) (Lyus v Prowsa)
Actual Occupation a. In occupation
- Lives there but is absent precise moment of disposition for short/ longer spell
- Not main/real home
- Employee (Lloyds Bank v Rosset) or spouse (Strand Securities) is present
- Not there but belongings are
Unless they've been there for a short time b/f disposition (Abbey National v Cann) b. Not in occupation
- Mere fleeting presence (need degree of permanence + continuity) (Abbey National Building Soc v Cann)
- Tenant or guest
- Children under 18 (Hypo Mortgages Services v Robinson)
- Use of right to pass & re-pass + metal staircase on the land (Chaudhary v Yavus) c. Unclear
- Has a no of houses & moves b/w them but happens to be there the time of disposition
* if 1st visit in a year = no occupation (Stockholm Finance Ltd)
= NB: Pre 2002: actual occupation only where disponee could easily discover the occupant's right ? changed by para. 2 Sch. 3 req. that occupation also be apparent; i.e. discoverable&disponee makes inquiries. If he dos & occupant doesn't disclose where reasonably expected to, disponee isn't bound, unless knew about it anyway.
= NB: Post 2002: actual occupation = physical occupation (Williams and Glynn's Bank v Boland) Consenting Out
Person w/overriding interest or registered right consents that disponee won't be bound o Bristol and West Buildings v Henning - unregistered land o Paddington Building Soc v Mendelson- registered land
B as holder of right in rem (e.g. via CT) goes along w/A's steps to sell/mortgage the property, he'll be prevented from setting up against disponee of any interest that would otherwise bind him, on the basis of being estopped from doing so. requirements: i) B must represent that he won't enforce it (apply interpretation of reasonable bystander) by:
- explicit statement
- omission to act (only if B was expected to object - judge by the facts)
= Consider if representation has been vitiated: a. mistake ? disponee won't be able to rely on it
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