Land Law Proprietary Estoppel Essay

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“In spite of the modern acceptance of a broadly based test of unconscionable dealing, the approach of the court when faced with estoppel claims tends to be restrictive. The courts treat such claims ‘with a degree of caution’, mindful of the fact that the doctrine of proprietary estoppel ‘may have the drastic effect of conferring on one person a permanent, irrevocable interest in the land of another, even though he has given no consideration for such acquisition, by way of contractual arrangement, and no legally effective gift of it has been made in his favour ‘” Critically analyse and assess this statement with particular regard to recent academic commentary and modern case law. Word Count = 2554 To evaluate this statement we must examine the cases been bought to the judiciary on the concept of proprietary estoppel, how the judiciary made their decision on the basis of proprietary estoppel. Land is defined by the Law of Property Act 1925 at S205 (1) (ix). When we buy property we do not own that land, the crown owns all the land. The best one can own is an estate/interest in land. Since the LPA[1] 1925, there are two legal estates in land and five interests. The two legal estates are set out in S.1 (1) (a) and (b) of the 1925 Act, namely; an estate in fee simple absolute in possession and a term of years estates. The five legal interest are contained at Section (2) (a) to (e) of the LPA Act[2] such as easements, landlords rights of re-entry and charge by way of mortgage. Anything other than that contained in S (1) of the LPA Act[3] is an equitable interest. Land can be acquired both through a legal or an equitable right S.522[4]. There are basically two ways in which one can acquire an interest in Land, formally and informally. The formal way, which is govern by the Law of the Property Act 1925 and the Law of Property (Miscellaneous

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