Jointly Owned Property Disputes
Traditionally many houses and flats have been owned by married couples. Social change has, over the years, however, increased the variety of circumstances in which property is jointly held.
When buying a property jointly, you should discuss with your conveyancer how you want to own the property. Ware & Kay’s Residential Conveyancing Team will be pleased to assist with this, in particular in the drafting of the Transfer document and any supplementary Declaration of Trust that would record your shares in the property.
A Will would also be needed to deal with what would happen on the death of either party in the event that you decided to hold individual shares in the property. It is always wise to try to avoid disputes in the first place by sensible drafting, for example if the purchase of the property is not being funded jointly.
Where a property is owned by a married couple and the relationship breaks down, a court has a wide variety of statutory powers to divide the parties’ assets, including the former matrimonial home. Our Dispute Resolution Team‘s experienced family solicitors will be able to assist you in these circumstances.
In the increasing number and variety of circumstances where there is no marriage, normal trusts law applies, and arguments can arise as to what the parties’ intentions were in terms of occupation, retention and disposal of the property or whether there was even an agreement in
This is often against the expectations of the people involved, especially in the case of unmarried couples. There is no concept of a ‘common law wife/husband’ in English law.
However, sometimes disputes do arise. In such circumstances, our Team will be happy to assist you in trying to resolve the dispute as speedily and economically as possible. Our aim will be to try to find a negotiated solution, possibly with the assistance of a mediator. The Court does try to encourage parties to try to settle disputes outside court.
Our Dispute Resolution Team can advise you on your rights and possible outcomes as regards occupation and the division of proceeds of sale, help you with negotiations and, if necessary, guide you through court proceedings to resolve the dispute.
Ware & Kay’s aim will always be to assist you in achieving a cost-effective outcome, whatever the circumstances.
We can also advise you on:
- Inheritance, Wills & Trust Disputes
- Commercial Property Disputes
- Resolving Contractual Disputes
- Property Disputes
- Professional Negligence Claims
We do not offer Legal Aid for these matters and, indeed, Legal Aid is rarely available for civil disputes.