Gissing v Gissing: HL 7 Jul 1970

Evidence Needed to Share Benefical Inerests

The family home had been purchased during the marriage in the name of the husband only. The wife asserted that she had a beneficial interest in it.
Held: The principles apply to any case where a beneficial interest in land is claimed by a person, whether spouse or stranger, in whom the land is not vested. A common intention has to be inferred from the parties’ conduct as to how the beneficial interest is to be held. The relevant intention is that which a reasonable person would draw from the parties’ words or conduct. The court must determine what inferences can reasonably be drawn in each case.
Viscount Dilhorne said: ‘It may be that it is alleged that some time after the acquisition of the matrimonial home the spouses formed the intention of sharing the beneficial interest. It may well be difficult to establish this but if it was, for instance, proved that up to the time when such an intention is alleged to have been formed, the mortgage payments were made by one spouse and thereafter by the other, then proof of that would tend to support the allegation.’
Lord Diplock said that where the most likely inference from the parties’ conduct is that the beneficial interest was not to belong solely to the party in whom the legal title is vested, the court must determine what in all the circumstances is a fair share: ‘A resulting, implied or constructive trust – and it is unnecessary for present purposes to distinguish between these three classes of trust – is created by a transaction between the trustee and the cestui que trust in connection with the acquisition by the trustee of a legal estate in land, whenever the trustee has so conducted himself that it would be inequitable to allow him to deny to the cestui que trust a beneficial interest in the land acquired. And he will be held so to have conducted himself if by his words or conduct he has induced the cestui que trust to act to his own detriment in the reasonable belief that by so acting he was acquiring a beneficial interest in the land.’
As to the shares upon which the property was held: ‘In such a case [where the court is satisfied that it was the common intention of both spouses that the contributing wife should have a share in the beneficial interest and that her contributions were made upon this understanding] the court must first do its best to discover from the conduct of the spouses whether any inference can reasonably be drawn as to the probable common understanding about the amount of the share of the contributing spouse upon which each must have acted in doing what each did, even though that understanding was never expressly stated by one spouse to the other or even consciously formulated in words by either of them independently. It is only if no such inference can be drawn that the court is driven to apply as a rule of law, and not as an inference of fact, the maxim ‘equality is equity’, and to hold that the beneficial interest belongs to the spouses in equal shares.
The same result however may often be reached as an inference of fact. The instalments of a mortgage to a building society are generally repayable over a period of many years. During that period, as both must be aware, the ability of each spouse to contribute to the instalments out of their separate earnings is likely to alter, particularly in the case of the wife if any children are born of the marriage. If the contribution of the wife in an early part of the period of repayment is substantial but is not an identifiable and uniform proportion of each instalment, because her contributions are indirect or, if direct, are made irregularly, it may well be a reasonable inference that their common intention at the time of the acquisition of the matrimonial home was that the beneficial interest should be held by them in equal shares and that each should contribute to the cost of its acquisition whatever amounts each could afford in the varying exigencies of family life to be expected during the period of repayment. In the social conditions of today this would be a natural enough common intention of a young couple who were both earning when the house was acquired but who contemplated having children whose birth and rearing in their infancy would necessarily affect the future earning capacity of the wife.’

Lord Diplock, Viscount Dolhorne, Lord Reid, Lord Morris, Lord Pearson
[1970] 3 WLR 255, [1971] AC 886, [1970] 2 All ER 780, [1970] UKHL 3
Bailii
England and Wales
Cited by:
CitedRoy Green v Vivia Green PC 20-May-2003
PC (Jamaica) The claimant sought a declaration that he was entitled to one half of the marriage assets on divorce. They had each acquired various properties and assets both in Jamaica and the USA. The judge at . .
CitedB and Others Russell McVeagh McKenzie Bartleet and Co v Auckland District Law Society, Gary J Judd PC 19-May-2003
(New Zealand) Solicitors resisted requests to disclose papers in breach of legal professional privilege from their professional body investigating allegations of professional misconduct against them.
Held: The appeal was allowed. The . .
ConsideredSpringett v Defoe CA 1992
Partners lived together, without being married, as secure joint tenants. They exercised the right to buy, contributing three quarters and one quarter of the price respectively. At the time they intended to marry. They did not discuss he shares, and . .
CitedFoskett v McKeown and Others CA 27-Jun-1997
Various people had paid money with the promise of acquiring an interest in land in Portugal. The scheme was fraudulent. The funds had been used to purchase a life/investment policy. The policy was held in trust for the fraudster’s mother but he had . .
CitedLloyds Bank plc v Rosset HL 29-Mar-1990
The house had been bought during the marriage but in the husband’s sole name. The plaintiff’s charge secured the husband’s overdraft. The bank issued possession proceedings. Mr Rosset had left, but Mrs Rosset claimed, as against the bank an interest . .
CitedYaxley v Gotts and Another CA 24-Jun-1999
Oral Agreement Creating Proprietory Estoppel
The defendant offered to give to the Plaintiff, a builder, the ground floor of a property in return for converting the house, and then managing it. They were friends, and the oral offer was accepted. The property was then actually bought in the name . .
AppliedStokes v Anderson CA 1991
The claimant had made two payments, amounting together to andpound;12,000, towards the acquisition of the one half share of the defendant’s ex-wife in the net equity (valued at andpound;90,000) in a house in which the claimant and the respondent . .
CitedHyett v Stanley and others CA 20-Jun-2003
The couple had lived together at the property without being married for several years. The house was held in the man’s sole name, and after his death she sought a half share in it. It was established that she had been told she should have a half . .
AppliedBurns v Burns CA 1984
Long Relationship Not Enough for Interest in Home
The parties lived together for 17 years but were not married. The woman took the man’s name, but beyond taking on usual household duties, she made no direct financial contribution to the house. She brought up their two children over 17 years. . .
CitedWalker v Hall CA 1984
The court considered the way of distributing property purchased by an unmarried couple: ‘When such a relationship comes to an end, just as with many divorced couples, there are likely to be disputes about the distribution of shared property. How are . .
CitedTurton v Turton CA 1988
When ascertaining the beneficial interests in a family home purchased by an unmarried couple, those interests had to be ascertained from consideration of the intentions of the parties at the time of the purchase; they were not to be left for . .
CitedGrant v Edwards and Edwards CA 24-Mar-1986
A couple were not married but lived together in Vincent Farmhouse in which the plaintiff claimed a beneficial interest on separation. The female partner was told by the male partner that the only reason for not acquiring the property in joint names . .
CitedMcFarlane v McFarlane CANI 1972
The parties disputed their respective shares in the family home. The facts in Pettitt and Gissing ‘were not such as to facilitate or encourage a comprehensive statement of this vexed branch of the law’ and ‘much remains unsettled.’ The court . .
CitedSpringette v Defoe CA 1-Mar-1992
Property was purchased in joint names, but with no express declaration of the beneficial interests. The couple had lived together for a short time as joint tenants of the local authority. They were able to purchase at a substantial discount from the . .
CitedCobbe v Yeomans Row Management Ltd and Others ChD 25-Feb-2005
Principles for Proprietary Estoppel
A developer claimed to have agreed that upon obtaining necessary planning permissions for land belonging to the respondents, he would purchase the land at a price reflecting its new value. The defendant denied that any legally enforceable agreement . .
CitedVan Laethem v Brooker and Another ChD 12-Jul-2005
The claimant asserted an interest in several properties by virtue of a common intention constructive trust or by proprietary estoppel. The parties had been engaged to be married.
Held: ‘A [constructive] trust arises in connection with the . .
CitedCollier v Collier CA 30-Jul-2002
Fraudulent Intent Negated Trust
The daughter claimant sought possession of business premises from her father who held them under leases. He claimed an order that the property was held in trust for him. The judge that at the time the properties were conveyed, the father had been . .
CitedClarke v Harlowe ChD 12-Aug-2005
The parties lived together. They acquired between them several properties of which the last was declared to be held as joint tenants. The relationship broke down. The parties now sought a declaration as to the destination of the proceeds of sale, . .
CitedStack v Dowden HL 25-Apr-2007
The parties had cohabited for a long time, in a home bought by Ms Dowden. After the breakdown of the relationship, Mr Stack claimed an equal interest in the second family home, which they had bought in joint names. The House was asked whether, when . .
CitedEves v Eves CA 28-Apr-1975
The couple were unmarried. The female partner had been led by the male partner to believe, when they set up home together, that the property would belong to them jointly. He had had told her that the only reason why the property was to be acquired . .
CitedJames v Thomas CA 23-Nov-2007
The claimant sought an interest in the property registered in the sole name of the respondent. The respondent had inherited a share in the property, and then bought out the interests of his siblings with support of a loan. The claimant had made no . .
CitedFowler v Barron CA 23-Apr-2008
The parties had lived together for many years but without marrying. The house had been put in joint names, but without specific advice on the issue or any express declaration of trust. In practice Mr Barron made the direct payments for the house and . .
CitedKilcarne Holdings Ltd v Targetfollow (Birmingham) Ltd and Another CA 16-Nov-2005
The defendant had brought in the claimant in order to assist in satisfying its own obligations under a lease. The joint venture was not recorded in a formal agreement. The appellant asserted that a constructive trust had been created. The judge had . .
CitedParris v Williams CA 23-Oct-2008
The parties had been business partners, but the business failed, and Mr Williams was made bankrupt. Mr Parris was offered a chance to purchase two apartments, and did so in his own name. Mr Williams asserted an interest, saying that it had been a . .
CitedThorner v Major and others HL 25-Mar-2009
The deceased had made a will including a gift to the claimant, but had then revoked the will. The claimant asserted that an estoppel had been created in his favour over a farm, and that the defendant administrators of the promisor’s estate held it . .
CitedCooper and Others v Fanmailuk.Com Ltd and Another CA 17-Dec-2009
F claimed to be the beneficial owner of shares registered in the names of the claimants. The appellants challenged a finding that the shares were held on trust for F, and the implication that the first appellant had presented a dishonest claim.
CitedClarke and Another v Corless and Another CA 31-Mar-2010
The claimants appealed against refusal of a declaration that a neighbouring access road and land was held on a constructive trust. They said that an agreement bewteeen the parties should have been effective to impose a trust on the defendants. The . .
CitedJones v Kernott SC 9-Nov-2011
Unmarried Couple – Equal division displaced
The parties were unmarried but had lived together. They now disputed the shares in which they had held the family home. It had been bought in joint names, but after Mr Kernott (K) left in 1993, Ms Jones (J) had made all payments on the house. She . .
CitedSingh v Singh and Another ChD 8-Apr-2014
The parties disputed ownership of various valuable properties. The father asserted that they were held under trusts following the Mitakshara Hindu code, under a common intention constructive trust. The son said that properties held in his own name . .
CitedLloyds Bank plc v Rosset CA 13-May-1988
Claim by a wife that she has a beneficial interest in a house registered in the sole name of her husband and that her interest has priority over the rights of a bank under a legal charge executed without her knowledge. The case raises a point of . .
CitedSen v Headley CA 28-Feb-1991
D, who was in hospital and near death, said to R (his former partner): ‘The house is yours, Margaret. You have the keys. They are in your bag. The deeds are in the steel box.’ After D’s death R discovered that D had put had put into her bag the only . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Family, Trusts, Estoppel

Leading Case

Updated: 25 November 2021; Ref: scu.182237

Express Newspapers v News (UK) plc: 1990

If summary judgment is given to one party on his claim, it must also be given on a counterclaim made on the same basis by the defendant. The principle that a party to litigation cannot ‘approbate and reprobate’ (or ‘blow hot and cold’) can curtail a party’s theoretical freedom to plead wholly inconsistent cases as alternatives. It is imported into English law from Scotland, and although it covers much the same ground as elective waiver and waiver by estoppel, it may be rather more flexible.
As to the Lion Laboratories case: ‘In my judgment, that decision has no application to the present case. Where that type of defence is put forward it permits the publication of secret information which it is in the public interest should be known. It does not apply to information of the kind which it may be of interest to the public to know. Moreover, the basis of the defence being that the public needs to know, the whole basis for the defence goes once such information has been disclosed to all, i.e. by one paper. There is no further requirement of public interest that another paper should be able to repeat the revelation of that information.’

Sir Nicolas Browne-Wilkinson V-C
[1990] 1 WLR 1320, Times 01-Jan-1990, [1990] FSR 359, [1990] Ch D 1320
England and Wales
Citing:
ConsideredLion Laboratories Ltd v Evans CA 1985
Lion Laboratories manufactured and marketed the Lion Intoximeter which was used by the police for measuring blood alcohol levels of motorists. Two ex-employees approached the Press with four documents taken from Lion. The documents indicated that . .
ApprovedWalter v Lane HL 6-Aug-1900
Reporter of Public Speech Owns Copyright I
A reporter attended a speech by Lord Rosebery. His report of the speech was republished in the Times after another journalist who had not been present published a verbatim copy. He claimed a copyright in the work he produced.
Held: The first . .

Cited by:
CitedOliver Ashworth (Holdings) Limited v Ballard (Kent) Limited CA 18-Mar-1999
In order for the landlord to claim double rent where a tenant held over unlawfully after the tenancy was determined, the landlord must not do anything to indicate that the lease might be continuing, for example by denying the validity of break . .
CitedHyde Park Residence Ltd v Yelland, News Group Newspapers Ltd, News International Ltd, Murrell CA 10-Feb-2000
The court considered a dispute about ownership and confidence in and copyright of of video tapes taken by Princess Diana before her death.
Held: The courts have an inherent discretion to refuse to enforce of copyright. When assessing whether . .
CitedHyperion Records Ltd v Sawkins CA 19-May-2005
The claimant had developed historical musical works for performance. They were published by the defendant, by means of recordings of a performance from the scores he had prepared – so called ‘performance editions’. The many hundreds of hours . .
CitedSmith v Skanska Construction Services Ltd QBD 29-Jul-2008
The court considered whether the driver of a vehicle involved in a fatal road accident in Thailand was driving within the authority of the UK employers. The driver was not an employee but had authority to use company vehicles for tasks for the . .
CitedWatts v Times Newspapers Ltd, Neil, Palmer and Schilling and Lom CA 28-Jul-1995
The plaintiff author had claimed damages for defamation, saying that he had been accused of plagiarism. An apology had been given in the form requested – no qualified privilege. The plaintiff brought an associated case against his lawyer, saying . .
CitedMcLaughlin and Others v Newall QBD 31-Jul-2009
The claimant asked the court to strike out the defence that the claimant had compromised his claim by agreement. The defendant had written letters critical of the claimants who were governors of a school which had disciplined his daughter a teacher . .
CitedThe Newspaper Licensing Agency Ltd and Others v Meltwater Holding Bv and Others ChD 26-Nov-2010
The claimant newspapers complained of the spidering of the web-sites and redistribution of the materials collected by the defendants to its subscribers. The defendants including the Public Relations Consultants Association (PRCA) denied that they . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Estoppel, Intellectual Property

Updated: 19 November 2021; Ref: scu.188157

Wolfe v Hogan: CA 1949

An issue arose as to the purpose of the original letting. The defendant was the sub-tenant of a large divided room on the ground floor of a house in Chelsea which she used for business purposes. She eventually decided to live there as well.
Held: The court upheld the decision of the judge that she was not entitled to Rent Act protection. If premises are let for business purposes, the tenant cannot claim that they have been converted into a dwelling-house merely because somebody lives on the premises. ‘The important matter is the rights under the lease, not the de facto use’. ‘If the lease contains an express provision as to the purpose of letting, it is not necessary to look further’ and so ‘if an agreement were to let premises as a barn, the tenant, even though he lived there, could not be heard to say they were let as a dwelling-house. The court will not admit oral evidence to contradict the terms of a written agreement, but such evidence will be admitted to establish that a party entered into the agreement in reliance upon a representation made to him by the other party to the agreement before he signed it that a term of the agreement would not be enforced against him. Such a representation has the force of a collateral contract and will bind the representor. Yet a landlord may at any time rely on a covenant against residing on the premises despite having waived past breaches of it.’
Cumming-Bruce LJ: ‘As to estoppel, I accept Mr Munro’s submission that, on the facts found by the judge, there is no evidence of such a representation express or implied as to found a promissory estoppel, that is to say a promise by the landlord that he would never enforce covenant 2(5) against the tenant. In the light of the evidence given by the defendant when he described how the landlord let him live there while he was looking for a flat, it is certainly very difficult to see how the facts which come under the general description of waiver can be erected into the edifice of a promissory estoppel.’
Denning LJ: ‘In determining whether a house of part of a house is ‘let as a dwelling’ within the meaning of the Rent Restrictions Acts, it is necessary to look at the purpose of the letting. If the lease contains an express provision as to the purpose of the letting, it is not necessary to look further. But, if there is no express provision, it is open to the court to look at the circumstances of the letting. If the house is constructed for use as a dwelling-house, it is reasonable to infer the purpose was to let it as a dwelling. But if, on the other hand, it is constructed for the purpose of being used as a lock-up shop, the reasonable inference is that it was let for business purposes. If the position were neutral, then it would be proper to look at the actual user. It is not a question of implied terms. It is a question of the purpose for which the premises were let.’
Evershed LJ considered whether moving into a property before the lease begins alters the tenant’s status: ‘Again I wish to make it quite plain that I am saying nothing which should be taken as indicating that if a tenant does change the user and creates out what was formerly a shop a dwelling-house, and if that fact is fully known to and accepted by the other party to the contract, whether or not there is a prohibition, the result may not very well be that there will then be inferred a contract to let as a dwelling-house, although it may be a different contract in essentials from the contract which was originally made and expressed.’

Denning LJ, Evershed LJ, Cumming-Bruce LJ
[1949] 2 KB 194
England and Wales
Cited by:
CitedAndrews and Another v Brewer and Another CA 17-Feb-1997
Tenants challenged an order for possession, saying the form of notice was defective. The date specified in the notice was clearly a clerical error. It provided that the tenancy would commence on 29 May 1993 and end on 28 May 1993, on the face of it, . .
CitedWagle v Trustees of Henry Smith’s Charity Kensington Estate CA 1990
The tenant had used the premises for both residential and business use. He claimed that, the business use having ceased, he had the protection of the 1977 Act.
Held: The Pulleng case required te court to reject the tenant’s argument. The . .
CitedTan and Another v Sitkowski CA 1-Feb-2007
The tenant claimed Rent Act protection for his tenancy. He had been rehoused and began his tenancy in 1970 with the ground floor used as a shop, and the first floor as living accomodation. He later abandoned the business use. He appealed a finding . .
CitedZH and CN, Regina (on The Applications of) v London Boroughs of Newham and Lewisham SC 12-Nov-2014
The court was asked whether the 1977 Act required a local authorty to obtain a court order before taking possession of interim accommodation it provided to an apparently homeless person while it investigated whether it owed him or her a duty under . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Landlord and Tenant, Estoppel

Updated: 17 November 2021; Ref: scu.187734

Prime Sight Ltd v Lavarello: PC 9 Jul 2013

(Gibraltar) Parties to a contract for the sale of land including the appellant company declared a purchase price which both knew to be false. Faced with insolvency proceedings, the appellant sought to challenge a claim for the full amount.
Held: The company’s appeal succeeded. Parties are free to contract on their own terms and the court’s role was to enforce them. There is nothing contrary to public policy in parties agreeing that certain facts were to be treated as established for the purposes of their transaction, although they knew the facts to be otherwise.
The doctrine of estoppel by deed overlaps with the doctrines of estoppel by representation and estoppel by convention. The basis of estoppel by representation is that the representor induced the representee to enter into the relevant transaction on the faith of a statement in circumstances which would make it unfair that the representor should go back on the statement. The basis of estoppel by convention is that the parties expressly or impliedly agreed that a certain state of facts or law was to be treated as true for the purposes of the transaction, and that it would be unfair for one or other to resile from the basis on which the transaction had proceeded. The w’aiver’ analysis did not fit naturally with the language of the deed of assignment and the Board considers that the Court of Appeal was justified in rejecting the company’s argument that there was some form of collateral waiver.

Lord Neuberger of Abbotsbury PSC, Lord Wilson, Lord Reed, Lord Carnwath, Lord Toulson JJSC
[2013] WLR (D) 514, [2013] UKPC 22, [2014] 2 WLR 84, [2013] 4 All ER 659, [2014] 1 AC 436
Bailii, WLRD
Commonwealth
Citing:
CitedBrooke v Haynes CA 1868
Lord Romilly MR said: ‘A party to a deed is not estopped in equity from averring against or offering evidence to controvert a recital therein contrary to the fact, which has been introduced into the deed by mistake of fact, and not through fraud or . .
CitedGreer v Kettle HL 1938
A corporate borrower agreed to repay andpound;250,000 with interest and to charge certain specified shares in another company as security. A guarantee was procured from another company, Parent Trust. The deed of guarantee recited that the lender had . .
CitedGrundt v Great Boulder Proprietary Gold Mines Limited 8-Oct-1937
(High Court of Australia) Parties to a transaction may choose to enter into it on the basis that certain facts are to be treated as correct as between themselves for the purpose of the transaction, although both know that they are contrary to the . .
CitedCarpenter v Buller 28-Apr-1841
The defence to an action of trespass was that the defendant was seised of the land in question. He produced a deed, made between himself, the plaintiff and a third party, in which this was stated to be the case
Held: The plaintiff was not . .
CitedStroughill v Buck 13-Feb-1850
Patteson J said: ‘When a recital is intended to be a statement which all parties to the deed have mutually agreed to admit as true, it is an estoppel upon all. But, when it is intended to be the statement of one party only, the estoppel is confined . .
CitedHorton v The Westminster Improvement Commissioners 2-Jun-1852
The plaintiff was assignee of the defendants’ bond to A to pay andpound;10,000. It recited that the defendants had borrowed andpound;5,000 from A for the purposes of carrying out works under the Westminster Improvement Acts 1845 and 1847. The . .
CitedM’Cance v The London And North Western Railway Company 20-Jun-1864
The plaintff contracted with the defendant for the transport of horses, understating their value. On their loss, the plaintiff sought their full value. The defendant had succeeded in limiting the award to the value stated.
Held: Williams J . .
CitedCentral Newbury Car Auctions Limited v Unity Finance Limited CA 1957
The defendant finance company alleged that the plaintiff car dealer, by its conduct, was estopped from denying the authority of their (rogue) customer to sell the car at issue, because they had permitted the customer, unkown to them, to take . .
CitedFerrier v Stewart 24-Jun-1912
High Court of Australia – The plaintiffs were the surviving members of a firm, owed money by the defendant’s husband confirmed promissory notes. The firm extend his credit against new promissory notes, provided that they were indorsed by the . .

Cited by:
CitedRichards v Wood CA 27-Feb-2014
The defendants had purchased their council house with financial asistance from their son, the claimant. He now asserted that a trust existed in the property in his favour.
Held: ‘unless there is a secure tenancy the statutory right to buy . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Estoppel, Equity

Updated: 17 November 2021; Ref: scu.513390

Amalgamated Investment and Property Co Ltd (in Liq) v Texas Commerce International Bank Ltd: CA 1982

The court explained the nature of an estoppel by convention.
Lord Denning MR said: ‘The doctrine of estoppel is one of the most flexible and useful in the armoury of the law. But it has become overloaded with cases. That is why I have not gone through them all in this judgment. It has evolved during the last 150 years in a sequence of separate developments: proprietary estoppel, estoppel by representation of fact, estoppel by acquiescence, and promissory estoppel. At the same time it has been sought to be limited by a series of maxims: estoppel is only a rule of evidence, estoppel cannot give rise to a cause of action, estoppel cannot do away with the need for consideration, and so forth. All these can now be seen to merge into one general principle shorn of limitations. When the parties to a transaction proceed on the basis of an underlying assumption – either of fact or of law – whether due to misrepresentation or mistake makes no difference – on which they have conducted the dealings between them – neither of them will be allowed to go back on that assumption when it would be unfair or unjust to allow him to do so. If one of them does seek to go back on it, the courts will give the other such remedy as the equity of the case demands.’ and ‘If parties to a contract, by their course of dealing, put a particular interpretation on the terms of it – on the faith of which each of them — to the knowledge of the other — acts and conducts their mutual affairs — they are bound by that interpretation just as much as if they had written it down as being a variation of the contract. There is no need to inquire whether their particular interpretation is correct or not — or whether they were mistaken or not — or whether they had in mind the original terms or not. Suffice it that they have, by their course of dealing, put their own interpretation on their contract, and cannot be allowed to go back on it.’

Lord Denning MR, Brandon LJ
[1982] QB 84, [1981] 1 All ER 923, [1981] 2 WLR 554, [1982] 1 Lloyds Rep 27
England and Wales
Cited by:
CitedParry v Edwards Geldard (A Firm) ChD 1-May-2001
The court had to decide the measure of damages. The claimant had lost the opportunity to acquire without charge a milk quota. The claimant asserted an estoppel by convention. This failed. Also the judge had not properly allowed for the marriage . .
CitedWilson v Truelove ChD 25-Mar-2003
The claimants requested a declaration that an option to repurchase land was void under the 1964 Act.
Held: The option to repurchase land was prima facie void. The right arose on the coming into existence of the agreement, or at the latest on . .
CitedValentine v Allen and others CA 4-Jul-2003
There was a claim in trespass arising from mistakes arising on the setting up of a small residential development. An easement necessary to the enjoyment of the plots sold off, was required over land no longer owned by the grantor at the time of the . .
CitedDun and Bradstreet Software Services (England) Ltd; Dun and Bradstreet Software Services Ltd v Provident Mutual Life Assurance Association and General Accident Linked Life Assurance CA 9-Jun-1997
Break clauses had been exercised on behalf of the plaintiffs. The defendant landlords appealed a decision upholding the notices. A penalty rent had been sought.
Held: There had been no sufficient agency established to validate the notice. The . .
CitedGodden v Merthyr Tydfil Housing Association CA 15-Jan-1997
The Plaintiff was a building contractor; the Defendant a housing association engaged in developing suitable sites for residential accommodation for letting to tenants. Before the contract the parties had successfully completed what was been called . .
CitedWayling v Jones CA 2-Aug-1993
The plaintiff and defendant were in a homosexual relationship. The plaintiff worked for the defendant for nominal expenses against his repeated promise to leave the business to him in his will. A will was made to that effect, but the defendant sold . .
CitedStrover and Another v Strover and Another ChD 10-May-2005
Insurance policies had been taken out by the partners in a firm. The surviving family of one and the remaining partners contested ownership. The policy was held in part for the benefit of the family. The premiums had been paid from partnership . .
CitedNorwegian American Cruises A/S (formerly Norwegian American Lines A/S) v Paul Munday Ltd (The ‘Vistafjord’) 1988
A party may be precluded by an estoppel by convention from raising a contention contrary to a common assumption of fact or law (which could include the validity of a notice) upon which they have acted. . .
CitedStancliffe Stone Company Ltd v Peak District National Park Authority QBD 22-Jun-2004
The claimants sought a declaration. Planning permission had been confirmed for four mineral extraction sites by letter in 1952. In 1996, two were listed as now being dormant. The claimant said the letter of 1952 created on single planning permision . .
CitedTrustee Solutions Ltd and others v Dubery and Another ChD 21-Jun-2006
The rules of a pensions scheme were altered. It was required that any such alteration be in writing, but the trustees had not signed the document creating the amendment.
Held: The words ‘writing under hand’ clearly required a signature, and . .
CitedJohnson v Gore Wood and Co HL 14-Dec-2000
Shareholder May Sue for Additional Personal Losses
A company brought a claim of negligence against its solicitors, and, after that claim was settled, the company’s owner brought a separate claim in respect of the same subject-matter.
Held: It need not be an abuse of the court for a shareholder . .
CitedScottish and Newcastle Plc v Lancashire Mortgage Corporation Ltd CA 5-Jul-2007
The parties each had a charge over a property, and now disputed which had priority. The brewery appealed an order for rectification of the registers to reverse priority on the basis of an estoppel. The charge in their favour had been registered . .
CitedCity Connect Management Ltd v Telia International Carrier UK and Another TCC 30-Jul-2004
The parties sought the expenses incurred in negotiating a development contract which failed before the documents were signed. . .
CitedAJ Building and Plastering Ltd v Turner and Others QBD 11-Mar-2013
An insurance company had engaged a main contractor to handle repairs to houses insured under its policies. The contractor had engaged the claimant subcontractor to carry out the works at the defendants’ homes, but then went into insolvent . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Equity, Estoppel, Land, Estoppel

Leading Case

Updated: 11 November 2021; Ref: scu.180371

Cobbe v Yeomans Row Management Ltd and Others: ChD 25 Feb 2005

Principles for Proprietary Estoppel

A developer claimed to have agreed that upon obtaining necessary planning permissions for land belonging to the respondents, he would purchase the land at a price reflecting its new value. The defendant denied that any legally enforceable agreement existed. Claims were made for a constructive trust, proprietary estoppel and restitution.
Held: The court set out principles for establishing a proprietary estoppel. The defendant had encouraged the plaintiff to make applications for permission, and sought later to take unconscionable advantage of them. There was no reason in principle why a constructive trust should not be as equally available as a remedial instrument in a ‘post-acquisition’ case as in a ‘pre-acquisition’ case in order to prevent injustice from the defendant’s unconscionable conduct in circumstances where the facts are capable of giving rise to a proprietary estoppel. A lien was granted in favour of the claimant over the property.

Etherton J
[2006] 1 WLR 2964, [2005] EWHC 266 (Ch)
Bailii
Law of the Property (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1989 2
England and Wales
Citing:
CitedWalford v Miles HL 1992
Agreement to Negotiate is Unworkable as a Contract
The buyers and sellers of a company agreed orally for the sellers to deal with the buyers exclusively and to terminate any negotiations between them and any other competing buyer. The sellers later decided not to proceed with their negotiations with . .
ApprovedJennings v Rice, Wilson, Marsh, Norris, Norris, and Reed CA 22-Feb-2002
The claimant asserted a proprietary estoppel against the respondents. He had worked for the deceased over many years, for little payment, and doing more and more for her. Though he still worked full time at first, he came to spend nights at the . .
CitedAttorney General of Hong Kong v Humphreys Estate (Queen’s Gardens) Ltd PC 1987
An agreement in principle was marked ‘subject to contract’. The Government would acquire some flats owned the plaintiff Group of companies in return for the Government granting, inter alia, a lease to the Group of some Crown lands. The Government . .
CitedLondon and Regional Investments Ltd v TBI Plc and Others CA 22-Mar-2002
TBI was a property investor and developer with several subsidiaries. It agreed to sell some to London and Regional. The agreement provided for the vendor and the purchaser to use reasonable endeavours to agree the terms of a joint venture agreement . .
MentionedPridean Limited v Forest Taverns Limited; Hipwell and Marshall CA 28-Nov-1996
The claimant owned a public house. It set out with the defendant to to acquire the premises or to take a lease of them. The defendant went into occupation, and carried out works. Negotiations continued, but broke down over the form of protection to . .
CitedBanner Homes Group Plc v Luff Developments and Another CA 10-Feb-2000
Competing building companies agreed not to bid against each other for the purchase of land. One proceeded and the other asserted that the land was then held on trust for the two parties as a joint venture.
Held: Although there was no formal . .
CitedRamsden v Dyson HL 1866
The Vice-Chancellor had held that two tenants of Sir John Ramsden, the owner of a large estate near Huddersfield, were entitled to long leases of plots on the estate. They ostensibly held the plots as tenants at will only, but they had spent their . .
CitedGillett v Holt and Another CA 23-Mar-2000
Repeated Assurances Created Equitable Estoppel
Repeated assurances, given over years, that the claimant would acquire an interest in property on the death of the person giving the re-assurance, and upon which the claimant relied to his detriment, could found a claim of equitable estoppel. The . .
CitedHoliday Inns Inc v Broadhead 1974
The parties negotiated for a lease, but never signed a contract. The plaintiff expended considerable sums to try to get planning, and once acquired it sought to buy the land, and claimed that Mr Broadhead had taken an unconscionable advantage, . .
CitedSelangor United Rubber Estates Ltd v Cradock (No 3) ChD 1968
The expressions ‘constructive trust’ and ‘constructive trustee’ are ‘nothing more than a formula for equitable relief. It is the actual control of assets belonging beneficially to a company which causes the law to treat directors as analogous to . .
CitedRavenocean Ltd v Garner ChD 19-Jan-2001
The claimant asserted a constructive trust arising from an oral agreement by the defendant to sell his land to the plaintiff. It was conditional on the claimant obtaining planning permission. Pursuant to the agreement, and relying on it, the . .
CitedShah v Shah CA 10-Apr-2001
The court was asked as to the enforceability of a document under the terms of which the defendants were to make a payment of pounds 1.5 million to the claimant. The document was described as a deed and provided for each defendant to sign in the . .
CitedKinane v Mackie-Conteh CA 1-Feb-2005
The court upheld a declaration by the trial judge that the claimant was an equitable chargee under an equitable charge of the defendant’s property, notwithstanding that the claimant relied on an oral agreement by the defendant for the grant to the . .
CitedCarl Zeiss Stiftung v Herbert Smith No.2 CA 1969
There had been long running disputes between the plaintiffs and a defendant in which the plaintiffs claimed that all of the defendant’s assets were held for the plaintiffs on trust. Before those claims had been resolved the plaintiff brought a . .
CitedGissing v Gissing HL 7-Jul-1970
Evidence Needed to Share Benefical Inerests
The family home had been purchased during the marriage in the name of the husband only. The wife asserted that she had a beneficial interest in it.
Held: The principles apply to any case where a beneficial interest in land is claimed by a . .
CitedLloyds Bank plc v Rosset HL 29-Mar-1990
The house had been bought during the marriage but in the husband’s sole name. The plaintiff’s charge secured the husband’s overdraft. The bank issued possession proceedings. Mr Rosset had left, but Mrs Rosset claimed, as against the bank an interest . .
CitedGrant v Edwards and Edwards CA 24-Mar-1986
A couple were not married but lived together in Vincent Farmhouse in which the plaintiff claimed a beneficial interest on separation. The female partner was told by the male partner that the only reason for not acquiring the property in joint names . .
CitedKilcarne Holdings Ltd v Targetfollow (Birmingham) Ltd, Targetfollow Group Ltd ChD 9-Nov-2004
The defendant entered into an agreement for lease, incurring substantial obligations. When it could not meet them it sought assistance from the claimant, who now claimed to have an interest in a joint venture. The draft documentation originally . .
CitedOxley v Hiscock CA 6-May-2004
The parties were not married, but had brought together their resources to purchase a home in the name of one of them. Nothing had been said about the respective shares on which the property was to be held.
Held: The shares were to be assessed . .

Cited by:
CitedVan Laethem v Brooker and Another ChD 12-Jul-2005
The claimant asserted an interest in several properties by virtue of a common intention constructive trust or by proprietary estoppel. The parties had been engaged to be married.
Held: ‘A [constructive] trust arises in connection with the . .
CitedPowell and Another v Benney CA 5-Dec-2007
The claimants asserted an interest under a constructive trust in land held by the defendant.
Held: The judge had found acts of detriment suffered by the claimants. Though elements of the judgment might be criticised, the appeal failed. . .
CitedLondon Borough of Bexley v Maison Maurice Ltd ChD 15-Dec-2006
The council had taken land by compulsory purchase in order to construct a dual carriageway. It then claimed that it had left undedicated a strip .5 metre wide as a ransom strip to prevent the defendant restoring access to the road.
Held: The . .
CitedSt Pancras and Humanist Housing Association Ltd v Leonard CA 17-Dec-2008
The claimant sought possession of a garage. The defendant claimed adverse possession.
Held: The defendant’s appeal against an order for possession failed. The defendant had attended a meeting where his behaviour had allowed other parties to . .
Appeal fromYeoman’s Row Management Ltd and Another v Cobbe CA 31-Jul-2006
The defendants orally agreed to sell the claimant a block of flats for andpound;12 million if he first obtained planning permission for it on terms as to a sharing of subsequent development profits. The claimant spent over andpound;100,000 and . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Land, Trusts, Estoppel

Leading Case

Updated: 11 November 2021; Ref: scu.223286

Preedy and Another v Dunne and Others: CA 21 Jul 2016

New claim for estoppel on appeal

The appellants/defendants alleged, but failed to establish, a proprietary estoppel. On appeal, they seek to construe out of the judge’s findings of fact, which they do not for the most part challenge, a new case based on estoppel by convention. The respondent/claimant trustees, of course, complain that the new case is not open to the appellants, because the trial would have been conducted quite differently if they had known that to have been the appellants’ case. In any event, the respondent trustees say that the facts found by the judge do not support the newly alleged estoppel by convention.

Longmore, Vos, King LJJ
[2016] EWCA Civ 805
Bailii
England and Wales
Citing:
Appeal fromPreedy and Another v Dunne and Others ChD 2-Oct-2015
The claimant freeholders sought possession of a public house against the defendants who operated a restaurant and pub business, and asserted a proprietary estoppel. . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Estoppel

Updated: 11 November 2021; Ref: scu.567722

Connelly v Director of Public Prosecutions: HL 1964

Plea of Autrefois Acquit is Narrow in Scope

The defendant had been tried for and acquitted of murder. The prosecution then sought to have him tried for robbery out of the same alleged facts. The House considered his plea of autrefois convict.
Held: The majority identified a narrow principle of autrefois, applicable only where the same offence is alleged in a second indictment. For the doctrine to apply it must be the same offence both in fact and in law. It was more than that an offence may be substantially, rather than precisely, the same as another in its legal characteristics, and the court rejected a suggestion that autrefois must apply where an accused has been prosecuted on substantially the same facts. The plea of autrefois acquit must be given a limited scope. With certain exceptions it has been held proper in a very large number of cases to try a man a second time on the same criminal conduct where the offence charged is different from that charged at the first trial.
The doctrine of res judicata occupies the same place in the civil law as the doctrine of autrefois acquit or convict does in the criminal law.
Lord Reid said: ‘So the general rule must be that the prosecutor should combine in one indictment all the charges which he intends to prefer.’ and ‘many generations of judges have seen nothing unfair in holding that the plea of autrefois acquit must be given a limited scope . . I cannot disregard the fact that with certain exceptions it has been held proper in a very large number of cases to try a man a second time on the same criminal conduct where the offence charged is different from that charged at the first trial.’
Lord Pearce said: ‘It might seem at first sight that the second prosecution here is a breach of the ‘well-established principle of our criminal law’ referred to by Cockburn in R v Elrington . . that ‘a series of charges shall not be preferred’. Since the time when those words were spoken the joinder of charges in an indictment has been deliberately facilitated by the Indictments Act, 1915, and there is thus the more reason for saying that in general the prosecutor should join in one indictment all the charges that he wishes to prefer in respect of one incident. It would be an abuse if he could bring up one offence after another based on the same incident, even if the offences were different in law, in order to make fresh attempts to break down the defence.’ and ‘a narrow view of the doctrines of autrefois acquit and convict, which has at times prevailed, does not comprehend the whole of the power on which the court acts in considering whether a second trial can properly follow an acquittal or conviction. A man ought not to be tried for a second offence which is manifestly inconsistent on the facts with either a previous conviction or a previous acquittal. And it is clear that the formal pleas which a defendant can claim as of right will not cover all such cases. Instead of attempting to enlarge the pleas beyond their proper scope, it is better that the courts should apply to such cases an avowed judicial discretion based on the broader principles which underly the pleas.’
Lord Morris said: ‘generally speaking a prosecutor has as much right as a defendant to demand a verdict of a jury on an outstanding indictment, and where either demands a verdict a judge has no jurisdiction to stand in the way of it.’ The Court possesses an inherent jurisdiction at common law to control its own proceedings: ‘There can be no doubt that a court which is endowed with a particular jurisdiction has powers which are necessary to enable it to act effectively within such jurisdiction. I would regard them as powers which are inherent in its jurisdiction. A court must enjoy such powers in order to enforce its rules of practice and to suppress any abuses of its process and to defeat any attempted thwarting of its process.’
Lord Devlin said: ‘it is absolutely necessary that issues of fact that are substantially the same should, whenever practicable, be tried by the same tribunal and at the same time.’ and ‘But a second trial on the same or similar facts is not always necessarily oppressive, and there may in a particular case be special circumstances which make it just and convenient in that case. The judge must then, in all the circumstances of the particular case, exercise his discretion as to whether or not he applies the general rule. Without attempting a comprehensive definition, it may be useful to indicate the sort of thing that would, I think, clearly amount to a special circumstance . . I do not think that it is obligatory on the prosecution, in order to be on the safe side, to put into an indictment all the charges that might conceivably come within rule 3, leaving it to the defence to apply for separation. If the prosecution considers that there ought to be two or more trials, it can make its choice plain by preferring two or more indictments. In many cases this may be to the advantage of the defence.’ and
‘For the doctrine of autrefois to apply it is necessary that the accused should have been put in peril of conviction for the same offence as that with which he is then charged. The word ‘offence’ embraces both the facts which constitute the crime and the legal characteristics which make it an offence. For the doctrine to apply it must be the same offence both in fact and in law.’

Lord Reid, Lord Devlin, Lord Pearce, Lord Morris of Borth-y-Gest
[1964] 2 AC 1254, [1964] 2 All ER 401
England and Wales
Citing:
DisapprovedRex v Jones CCA 1918
Where the charge is one of murder, no other charge may be added to the indictment. . .
ApprovedRegina v Elrington 9-Nov-1861
The appellant’s co-accused had been summarily tried and acquitted of common assault. The accused was subsequently indicted on the same facts for assault causing grievous bodily harm and assault causing actual bodily harm. The accused demurred.
CitedRegina v Miles 1890
. .
CitedSambasivam v Director of Public Prosecutions, Federation of Malaya PC 1950
(Malaya) The effect of a verdict of acquittal pronounced by a competent court after a lawful trial is not restricted to the fact that the person acquitted cannot be tried again for the same offence. It is binding and conclusive in all subsequent . .
CitedWemyss v Hopkins 1875
The defendant had been convicted under a statutory offence, on the basis that as a driver of a carriage he had struck a horse ridden by the prosecutor causing hurt and damage to the prosecutor. He was then summoned again for what appeared to be a . .

Cited by:
CitedRegina v Beedie CACD 11-Mar-1997
Stay for Extended Autrefois Convict
The plea of autrefois convict applies only if the legal substance of the charges is same but the judge has a discretion. The plea is not limited to Connelly v DPP definitions, but is still narrow.
A 19-year-old girl died of carbon monoxide . .
CitedRegina v Riebold QBD 1967
When looking at a plea of autrefois acquit, the court had to ask whether there were any exceptional circumstances which would make it not oppressive to grant the prosecution leave to proceed.
Barry J said: ‘I feel that I am bound to apply . .
CitedRegina v Police Complaints Board ex parte Madden and Rhone 1983
Double jeopardy, properly understood, is best described in the phrase ‘No man should be tried twice for the same offence’. The court emphasised the word ‘tried’. . .
CitedRegina (on the Application of Redgrave) v The Commissioner of Police for the Metropolis CA 22-Jan-2003
The police officer had been accused of an offence. The case was discharged under the section at committal. The Commissioner sought to commence disciplinary proceedings on the same evidence.
Held: The tests of the two sets of hearings were . .
CitedRegina v Chichester Justices ex parte Stephen Alexander Crowther Admn 14-Oct-1998
The defendant sought judicial review of an order made in 1998 issuing a warrant for his committal for failure to pay a confiscation order made in 1991. He had served 6 years imprisonment, and in default of payment a further 18 months. He was . .
CitedRuth Ellis v Regina CACD 8-Dec-2003
In 1955, the deceased defendant was convicted of murder, and later hanged. The court considerd a post mortem appeal by the CRCC and her family. It was suggested that she should have been found guilty of manslaughter having been provoked by the . .
CitedRegina v Derek William Bentley (Deceased) CACD 30-Jul-1998
The defendant had been convicted of murder in 1952, and hung. A court hearing an appeal after many years must apply laws from different eras to different aspects. The law of the offence (of murder) to be applied was that at the time of the offence. . .
CitedDirector of Public Prosecutions and others v Tokai and others PC 12-Jun-1996
(Trinidad and Tobago) The appellant had been charged in 1981 with offences alleged to have been committed shortly before. The proceedings continued until his appeal for one was dismissed in 1988. The wounding charges were proceeded with only in . .
CitedPhipps, Regina v CACD 14-Jan-2005
The appellant had been convicted of driving with excess alcohol. After complaints by the injured victim’s family he was further prosecuted for dangerous driving. He now appealed his conviction, having pleaded guilty when the judge failed to find an . .
CitedRegina v Forest of Dean Justices ex parte Farley CACD 1990
The prosecutor had charged the defendant first with drink driving so as to take advantage of the provision placing upon the defendant the burden of proving that he had taken drink after the traffic accident and before testing. It iintended then to . .
CitedRegina v Z (Prior acquittal) HL 22-Jun-2000
The defendant on a charge of rape had been tried and acquitted of the rape of different women on three previous occasions in three separate trials. The prosecution wished to call those three complainants to give similar fact evidence in support of . .
CitedRegina v Davis (Iain); Regina v Ellis, Regina v Gregory, Regina v Simms, Regina v Martin CACD 19-May-2006
The several defendants complained at the use at their trials of evidence given anonymously. The perceived need for anonymity arose because, from intimidation, the witnesses would not be willing to give their evidence without it.
Held: The . .
CitedRegina v Davis HL 18-Jun-2008
The defendant had been tried for the murder of two men by shooting them at a party. He was identified as the murderer by three witnesses who had been permitted to give evidence anonymously, from behind screens, because they had refused, out of fear, . .
CitedCPS (Sussex) v Mattu CACD 17-Jul-2009
The defendant faced a charge of conspiracy to import Class A drugs. Detailed discussions had taken place between the prosecutor and defendant under which he had pleaded guity on a agreed basis of fact. The prosecutor then proceeded with a furthe . .
CitedLSA, Regina v CACD 16-May-2008
(Courts-Martial Appeals Court) The defendant had faced road traffic offence charges, but the court had discharged the case using the Forest of Dean case. The prosecutor sought to appeal but failed to give the undertaking with regard to taking no . .
CitedDirector of Public Prosecutions v Alexander Admn 27-Jul-2010
The defendant had crashed his car after driving off with a girl, and while being chased by another car driven by her boyfriend. The police first cautioned him for false imprisonment, but then prosecuted him for careless driving. The prosecutor . .
CitedCoke-Wallis, Regina (on The Application of) v Institute of Chartered Accountants In England and Wales SC 19-Jan-2011
The appellant chartered accountant had been convicted in Jersey after removing documents from his offices relating to a disputed trust and in breach of an order from his professional institute. The court now considered the relevance and application . .
CitedAl Rawi and Others v The Security Service and Others SC 13-Jul-2011
The claimant pursued a civil claim for damages, alleging complicity of the respondent in his torture whilst in the custody of foreign powers. The respondent sought that certain materials be available to the court alone and not to the claimant or the . .
CitedLong, Regina (on The Application of) v Secretary of State for Defence Admn 15-Jul-2014
The claimant’s son had been one of six soldiers of the Royal Military police to have been murdered by an armed mob attacking a police station in Iraq in 2003. The said that their deaths had not been properly or sufficiently investigated. The corone . .
CitedMaxwell, Regina v SC 20-Jul-2011
The defendant had had his conviction for murder set aside after a finding of gross prosecutorial misconduct by the police. The Court was now asked as to the propriety of the order for a retrial. The police involved in the case had misled the CPS, . .
CitedYasain, Regina v CACD 16-Jul-2015
The Court was asked as to the powers of the Court of Appeal Criminal Division to re-open an appeal to correct an error which is said to have caused real injustice in that the error led to the quashing of a sentence lawfully imposed in the Crown . .
CitedWangige, Regina v CACD 14-Oct-2020
Second Prosecution on Same Facts was An Abuse
The defendant appealed his conviction of causing death by dangerous driving. He appealed from the refusal of the judge to give a stay the prosecution as an abuse He had been previously prosecuted for a lesser offence on the same facts.
Held: . .
CitedDwyer v Regina CACD 11-Feb-2011
Further fresh evidential materials were sought to be relied upon in a second prosecution of the defendant.
Held: ‘In our judgment, the words ‘the same or substantially the same facts’ or ‘the same incident’ refer to the relevant state of . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Criminal Practice, Estoppel

Leading Case

Updated: 11 November 2021; Ref: scu.180637

Taylors Fashions Ltd v Liverpool Victoria Trustees Co Ltd: ChD 1981

The fundamental principle that equity is concerned to prevent unconscionable conduct permeates all the elements of the doctrine of estoppel. In the light of the more recent cases, the principle ‘requires a very much broader approach which is directed rather at ascertaining whether, in particular individual circumstances, it would be unconscionable for a party to be permitted to deny that which, knowingly or unknowingly, he has allowed or encouraged another to assume to his detriment than to enquiring whether the circumstances can be fitted within the confines of some preconceived formula serving as a universal yardstick of unconscionable behaviour.’
A party who seeks to set up an estoppel, whether a proprietary estoppel, estoppel by acquiescence or estoppel by encouragement, must establish that it would be unconscionable for the other party to be permitted to deny what he has allowed or encouraged the first party to assume to his detriment: ‘If A under an expectation created or encouraged by B that A shall have a certain interest in land thereafter, on the faith of such expectation and with B’s knowledge, and without objection by B, acts to his detriment in connection with such land, a Court of equity will compel B to give effect to such expectation’.
Estoppel is a principle of broad even protean application: ‘Furthermore the more recent cases indicate, in my judgment, that the application of the Ramsden v. Dyson LR 1 HL 129 principle – whether you call it proprietary estoppel by acquiescence or estoppel by encouragement is really immaterial – requires a very much broader approach which is directed rather at ascertaining whether, in particular individual circumstances, it would be unconscionable for a party to deny that which, knowingly or unknowingly, he has allowed or encouraged another to assume to his detriment than to inquiring whether the circumstances can be fitted within the confines of some preconceived formula serving as a universal yardstick for every form of unconscionable behaviour.’
The court considered the situations in which an estoppel may arise: ‘Furthermore the more recent cases indicate, in my judgment, that the application of the Ramsden v Dyson L.R. 1 H.L. 129 principle – whether you call it proprietary estoppel, estoppel by acquiescence or estoppel by encouragement is really immaterial – requires a very much broader approach which is directed rather at ascertaining whether, in particular individual circumstances, it would be unconscionable for a party to be permitted to deny that which, knowingly, or unknowingly, he has allowed or encouraged another to assume to his detriment than to inquiring whether the circumstances can be fitted within the confines of some preconceived formula serving as a universal yardstick for every form of unconscionable behaviour.’ and ‘The inquiry which I have to make therefore, as it seems to me, is simply whether, in all the circumstances of this case, it was unconscionable for the defendants to seek to take advantage of the mistake which, at the material time, everybody shared, and, in approaching that, I must consider the cases of the two plaintiffs separately because it may be that quite different considerations apply to each.’

Oliver J
[1982] QB 133, [1981] 2 WLR 576, [1981] 1 All ER 897, [1979] 251 EG 159, [1979] EWHC Ch 1
Bailii
England and Wales
Citing:
CitedRamsden v Dyson HL 1866
The Vice-Chancellor had held that two tenants of Sir John Ramsden, the owner of a large estate near Huddersfield, were entitled to long leases of plots on the estate. They ostensibly held the plots as tenants at will only, but they had spent their . .
ExplainedWillmott v Barber ChD 19-Jun-1880
In 1869 Barber granted a 99-year lease of three acres of land in east London, subject to a covenant against assignment or sub-letting without consent. In 1874, in breach of covenant, he sub-let one acre on an annual tenancy to Willmott (who owned a . .

Cited by:
CitedJennings v Rice, Wilson, Marsh, Norris, Norris, and Reed CA 22-Feb-2002
The claimant asserted a proprietary estoppel against the respondents. He had worked for the deceased over many years, for little payment, and doing more and more for her. Though he still worked full time at first, he came to spend nights at the . .
CitedIn re Basham dec’d; Basham v Basham 1986
The claimant and her husband had helped her mother and her stepfather throughout the claimant’s adult life. She received no remuneration but understood that she would inherit her stepfather’s property when he died. After her mother’s death and until . .
CitedParker v Parker ChD 24-Jul-2003
Lord Macclesfield claimed a right to occupy a castle. The owners claimed that he had only a mere tenancy at will. The exact rooms in the castle which had been occupied had varied over time.
Held: The applicant was entitled to reasonable . .
CitedDun and Bradstreet Software Services (England) Ltd; Dun and Bradstreet Software Services Ltd v Provident Mutual Life Assurance Association and General Accident Linked Life Assurance CA 9-Jun-1997
Break clauses had been exercised on behalf of the plaintiffs. The defendant landlords appealed a decision upholding the notices. A penalty rent had been sought.
Held: There had been no sufficient agency established to validate the notice. The . .
CitedGonthier and Another v Orange Contract Scaffolding Ltd CA 25-Jun-2003
The question of a proprietary estoppel as between landlord and tenant arose. An agreement had been reached subject to contract for the grant of a lease, with an option to purchase. The tenant was allowed into possession before the documentation was . .
CitedKing v Jackson (T/a Jackson Flower Company) CA 16-Jul-1997
The defendant appealed an award of pounds 11,000 damages for unlawful eviction of his tenant. The tenant had found herself unable to pay the rent and had given notice to quit. She was then told to leave immediately. The judge awarded statutory . .
CitedGeoffrey Allan Chadwick, Sylvia Joyce Chadwick, Edward James Chadwick v Abbotswood Properties Ltd, Gordon Leonard Hauser, Pamela Ann Hauser, Rectory Pump Ltd ChD 18-May-2004
Between to new houses was a steep bank. Who owned it? Before the transfer there had been different plans and much correspondence.
Held: Where there was doubt as to the extent of land transferred, the court could look to the physical boundaries . .
CitedActionstrength Limited v International Glass Engineering In Gl En SpA and others HL 3-Apr-2003
Actionstrength agreed with Inglen to provide construction staff to build a factory for St-Gobain. Inglen failed to pay. Actionstrength claimed against for the amount due. Inglen went into liquidation. The claim was now against St-Gobain. The claim . .
RestatedHodgens v Beckingham CA 19-Feb-2003
The defendant appealed a finding of infringement in a music copyright work, ‘Young at Heart’, based on a claim of joint authorship. The claimant had delayed his claim for many years, but now sought only rights to future royalties.
Held: The . .
CitedFisher v Brooker and Another ChD 20-Dec-2006
The claimant said that he had contributed to the copyright in the song ‘A Whiter Shade of Pale’ but had been denied royalties. He had played the organ and particularly the organ solo which had contrbuted significantly to the fame of the record.
ApprovedBlue Haven Enterprises Ltd v Tully and Another PC 21-Feb-2006
(Jamaica ) . .
CitedBarrett v Universal-Island Records Ltd and others ChD 15-May-2006
The claimant was entitled to share in the copyright royalties of Bob Marley and the Wailers, and claimed payment from the defendants. The defendants said that the matters had already been settled and that the claim was an abuse of process, and also . .
CitedA and M Records Ltd v VCI 1995
Sir Mervyn Davies said: ‘However that may be, I am satisfied that Mr Ross was at all material times quite unaware of any activities of the plaintiffs being activities of a kind that he as owner of the copyright in the sound recordings could object . .
CitedJohnson v Gore Wood and Co HL 14-Dec-2000
Shareholder May Sue for Additional Personal Losses
A company brought a claim of negligence against its solicitors, and, after that claim was settled, the company’s owner brought a separate claim in respect of the same subject-matter.
Held: It need not be an abuse of the court for a shareholder . .
CitedScottish and Newcastle Plc v Lancashire Mortgage Corporation Ltd CA 5-Jul-2007
The parties each had a charge over a property, and now disputed which had priority. The brewery appealed an order for rectification of the registers to reverse priority on the basis of an estoppel. The charge in their favour had been registered . .
ApprovedGillett v Holt and Another CA 23-Mar-2000
Repeated Assurances Created Equitable Estoppel
Repeated assurances, given over years, that the claimant would acquire an interest in property on the death of the person giving the re-assurance, and upon which the claimant relied to his detriment, could found a claim of equitable estoppel. The . .
ApprovedBrooker and Another v Fisher CA 4-Apr-2008
The claimant had asserted a joint authorship of the song ‘A Whiter Shade of Pale’ written in the sixties. The defendant appealed saying that the claim had been brought too late, and that the finding ignored practice in the music industry. The . .
CitedLondon Borough of Bexley v Maison Maurice Ltd ChD 15-Dec-2006
The council had taken land by compulsory purchase in order to construct a dual carriageway. It then claimed that it had left undedicated a strip .5 metre wide as a ransom strip to prevent the defendant restoring access to the road.
Held: The . .
CitedYeoman’s Row Management Ltd and Another v Cobbe HL 30-Jul-2008
The parties agreed in principle for the sale of land with potential development value. Considerable sums were spent, and permission achieved, but the owner then sought to renegotiate the deal.
Held: The appeal succeeded in part. The finding . .
CitedSQ v RQ and Another FD 31-Jul-2008
The home in which the family had lived was held in the name of a brother. Each party claimed that it was held in trust for them. Chancery proceedings had been consolidated into these ancillary relief applications. The home had been in the husband’s . .
CitedSt Pancras and Humanist Housing Association Ltd v Leonard CA 17-Dec-2008
The claimant sought possession of a garage. The defendant claimed adverse possession.
Held: The defendant’s appeal against an order for possession failed. The defendant had attended a meeting where his behaviour had allowed other parties to . .
CitedThorner v Major and others CA 2-Jul-2008
The deceased had written a will, revoked it but then not made another. The claimant had worked for the deceased understanding that property would be left to him, and now claimed that the estate property was held under a trust for him.
Held: . .
CitedFisher v Brooker and Others HL 30-Jul-2009
The claimant sought a share in the royalties from the song ‘A whiter shade of pale’ but had delayed his claim for 38 years. He had contributed the organ solo which had contributed significantly to the song’s success. He now sought a share of future . .
EndorsedHabib Bank Ltd v Habib Bank AG Zurich CA 1981
A combination of defences based on delay was pleaded in a passing off action objecting to the use of a name which the defendants had been using without objection for many years. A permanent injunction was claimed.
Held: Oliver LJ said as to . .
CitedBudejovicky Budvar Narodni Podnik v Anheuser-Busch Inc CA 20-Oct-2009
The parties had long disputed the use of the trade marks ‘Bud’ and ‘Budweiser’ for their beers. The claimant now said that the defendants had made an abusive registration under the 1994 Act, by requesting a declaration that the registration by the . .
CitedGill v Woodall and Others ChD 5-Oct-2009
The claimant challenged her late mother’s will which had left the entire estate to a charity. She asserted lack of knowledge and approval and coercion, and also an estoppel. The will included a note explaining that no gift had been made because she . .
CitedBrightlingsea Haven Ltd and Another v Morris and others QBD 30-Oct-2008
The caravan park operated under planning consents requiring the caravans to be occupied only during certain months. The defendants had bought their mobile homes from the claimants to occupy full time, and said that the claimants knew of this. The . .
CitedBabbage v North Norfolk District Council CA 1990
The court considered the extent of its ability to insert conditions into caravan site agreements under the 1960 Act. The site licence contained two relevant conditions. One required that no caravan should be occupied between November 1 and March 19. . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Estoppel, Equity

Leading Case

Updated: 11 November 2021; Ref: scu.188170

Fairfax Media Publications Pty Ltd v Reed International Books Australia Pty Ltd: 7 Sep 2010

fairfax_ibaFCA2010

Austlii (Federal Court of Australia)
COPYRIGHT – respondent reproduces headlines and creates abstracts of articles in the applicant’s newspaper – whether reproduction of headlines constitutes copyright infringement – whether copyright subsists in individual newspaper headlines, in an article with its headline, in the compilation of all the articles and headlines in a newspaper edition and in the compilation of the edition as a whole – literary work – copyright protection for titles – use of headline as citation to article – policy considerations – originality – authorship – whether presumption of originality for anonymous works available – whether work of joint authorship – whether the headlines constitute a substantial part of each compilation – whether the work of writing headlines is part of the work of compilation – whether fair dealing for the purpose of or associated with reporting news
ESTOPPEL – whether applicant estopped from asserting copyright infringement by respondent – applicant has known for many years that headlines of the applicant’s newspaper are reproduced in the abstracting service – applicant had subscribed to and resupplied the abstracting service – whether respondent relied on an assumption that the applicant will not assert copyright infringement by reproduction by headlines – whether applicant created or encouraged the assumption – detriment – whether unconscionable to depart from assumption
Bennett J said: ‘In my view, the headline of each article functions as the title of the article . . It may be a clever title. That is not sufficient. Headlines are, like titles, simply too insubstantial and too short to qualify for copyright protection as literary works. The function of the headline is as a title to the article as well as a brief statement of its subject, in a compressed form comparable in length to a book title or the like. It is, generally, too trivial to be a literary work, much as a logo was held to be too trivial to be an artistic work . . It may be that evidence directed to a particular headline, or a title of so extensive and of such a significant character, could be sufficient to warrant a finding of copyright protection . . but that is not the case here . . Fairfax claims copyright in the headlines as a class of work, based on the evidence of a general practice that headlines are determined by staff and settled at meetings of staff to provide a title to a story which also fits into the format of the page . . That is insufficient to overcome the reasoning for the established practice of denying copyright protection to titles which is the apt characterisation for headlines as a class . . The need to identify a work by its name is a reason for the exclusion of titles from copyright protection in the public interest. A proper citation of a newspaper article requires not only reference to the name of the newspaper but also reproduction of the headline . . If titles were subject to copyright protection, conventional bibliographic references to an article would infringe. Such considerations may well be a reason for the fact that headlines and ‘short phrases’ are excluded from copyright in the United States . . In my view, to afford published headlines, as a class, copyright protection as literary works would tip the balance too far against the interest of the public in the freedom to refer or be referred to articles by their headlines.’

Bennett J
[2010] FCA 984
Austlii
Cited by:
CitedThe Newspaper Licensing Agency Ltd and Others v Meltwater Holding Bv and Others ChD 26-Nov-2010
The claimant newspapers complained of the spidering of the web-sites and redistribution of the materials collected by the defendants to its subscribers. The defendants including the Public Relations Consultants Association (PRCA) denied that they . .
CitedThe Newspaper Licensing Agency Ltd and Others v Meltwater Holding Bv and Others CA 27-Jul-2011
The defendant companies provided media monitoring services, automatically searching web-sites for terms of interest. The claimant newspapers operated a licensing system through the first claimant permitting the re-use of the content on its members . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Commonwealth, Intellectual Property, Estoppel

Leading Case

Updated: 11 November 2021; Ref: scu.470926

Yeoman’s Row Management Ltd and Another v Cobbe: CA 31 Jul 2006

The defendants orally agreed to sell the claimant a block of flats for andpound;12 million if he first obtained planning permission for it on terms as to a sharing of subsequent development profits. The claimant spent over andpound;100,000 and gained planning permission, whereupon the defendant resiled from the oral agreement and demanded andpound;20 million instead of andpound;12 million as the purchase price.
Held: The appeal failed. The Court upheld the grant to the claimant of a lien secured on the property for 50 per cent of the development value attributable to the obtaining of the planning permission. The 1989 Act had not displaced the doctrine of proprietary estoppel: ‘section 2 has no application to this proprietary estoppel claim. No concluded agreement was made. There can be no question of an action of enforce the Second Agreement. The section is irrelevant to an action to enforce a cause of action for proprietary estoppel which does not depend on the existence of a concluded agreement for sale or on the enforcement of it, but on the inducement and encouragement to get Mr Cobbe to apply for and obtain planning permission in the belief and expectation that he would get a binding contract for the sale of the Property for andpound;2 million plus overage.’

Mummery LJ, Dyson LJ, Sir Martin Nourse
[2006] EWCA Civ 1139, [2006] 1 WLR 2964
Bailii
Law of Property (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1989 2(1) 2(5)
England and Wales
Citing:
CitedYaxley v Gotts and Another CA 24-Jun-1999
Oral Agreement Creating Proprietory Estoppel
The defendant offered to give to the Plaintiff, a builder, the ground floor of a property in return for converting the house, and then managing it. They were friends, and the oral offer was accepted. The property was then actually bought in the name . .
Appeal fromCobbe v Yeomans Row Management Ltd and Others ChD 25-Feb-2005
Principles for Proprietary Estoppel
A developer claimed to have agreed that upon obtaining necessary planning permissions for land belonging to the respondents, he would purchase the land at a price reflecting its new value. The defendant denied that any legally enforceable agreement . .

Cited by:
CitedAnderson Antiques (UK) Ltd v Anderson Wharf (Hull) Ltd and Another ChD 23-May-2007
anderson_andersonChD2008
The claimants owned land against which they said, the defendant had wrongfully registered notices. They sought removal of the notices, damages, and an injunction to prevent further notices being registered. The first defendant asserted an oral . .
Appeal fromYeoman’s Row Management Ltd and Another v Cobbe HL 30-Jul-2008
The parties agreed in principle for the sale of land with potential development value. Considerable sums were spent, and permission achieved, but the owner then sought to renegotiate the deal.
Held: The appeal succeeded in part. The finding . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Estoppel, Land

Leading Case

Updated: 09 November 2021; Ref: scu.244479

Wright v Waters and Another: ChD 6 Nov 2014

The claimant sought provision from her late mother’s estate under the 1975 Act, and asserting a proprietary estoppel. The mother had transferred andpound;10,000 to the daughter several years before. The mother had said it was to be invested on her behalf, and he claimant said it had been a gift. On falling out, the claimant was said to have disowned the mother. The mother had left a letter explaining her refusal to disinherit her daugter.
Held: The claimant was an unreliable witness. Money had not been given to the claimant, but was to have been held in trust. Though it apeared that she had worked more extensively for her mother without payment, the clim n proprietary estoppel failed also: ‘I am not satisfied that there were sufficiently clear representations that were relied on by Patricia Wright. Equally I am not satisfied that mention of inheritance by Harold Waters was intended to be taken seriously or was one that might reasonably have been expected to have been relied on by Patricia Wright. ‘

Behrens HHJ
[2014] EWHC 3614 (Ch)
Bailii
Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act
England and Wales
Citing:
CitedIn Re Coventry (deceased) CA 3-Jan-1979
The deceased’s adult son sought provision from the intestate estate. The sole beneficiary under the rules was the plaintiff’s mother. The estate was modest; the intestate’s interest in his house (he had been living there with the plaintiff). The . .
CitedEspinosa v Bourke CA 1999
The claimant was the adult daughter of the deceased. She had been expressly excluded by the deceased from a share in his estate. The claimant had bought a business with the aid of a loan secured by a mortgage. At first instance, Johnson J, dismissed . .
CitedIlott v Mitson and Others CA 31-Mar-2011
The claimant, the estranged adult daughter of the deceased, had claimed under the 1975 Act. The judge made an order for payment of andpound;50,000 by way of capitalisation of maintenance. The claimant appealed saying she should have received more, . .
CitedRe Pearce, Deceased, Pearce v Pearce CA 25-Jun-1998
The claimant, the adult son of the deceased sought provision from the estate. He said that he had taken a substantial part in the refurbishment of a family property. Later his parents had separated. At first instance Behrens J had held there was a . .
CitedThorner v Major and others HL 25-Mar-2009
The deceased had made a will including a gift to the claimant, but had then revoked the will. The claimant asserted that an estoppel had been created in his favour over a farm, and that the defendant administrators of the promisor’s estate held it . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Wills and Probate, Estoppel

Updated: 09 November 2021; Ref: scu.538687

Lloyds Bank plc v Rosset: HL 29 Mar 1990

The house had been bought during the marriage but in the husband’s sole name. The plaintiff’s charge secured the husband’s overdraft. The bank issued possession proceedings. Mr Rosset had left, but Mrs Rosset claimed, as against the bank an interest in it as the matrimonial home. She said there had been a common understanding or intention arising out of her own efforts in arranging for extensive renovation works and herself carrying out some redecoration that she would have an overriding interest under section 70(1)(g) in the house. The bank appealed a finding that she had a beneficial interest on the date of completion.
Held: To establish a trust here would have to have been a declaration in writing. Mrs Rosset therefore relied on an estoppel, for which she would have to establish a change of her circumstances in reliance upon such a representation. There was no such evidence, and the judge’s finding that Mr. Rosset held the property as constructive trustee for himself his wife could not be supported.
Lord Bridge said: ‘The first and fundamental question which must always be resolved is whether, independently of any inference to be drawn from the conduct of the parties in the course of sharing the house as their home and managing their joint affairs, there has at any time prior to acquisition, or exceptionally at some later date, been any agreement, arrangement or understanding reached between them that the property is to be shared beneficially. The finding of an agreement or arrangement to share in this sense can only, I think, be based on evidence of express discussions between the partners, however imperfectly remembered and however imprecise their terms may have been. Once a finding to this effect is made it will only be necessary for the partner asserting a claim to a beneficial interest against the partner entitled to the legal estate to show that he or she has acted to his or her detriment or significantly altered his or her position in reliance on the agreement in order to give rise to a constructive trust or a proprietary estoppel.
‘where there is no evidence to support a finding of an agreement or arrangement to share, however reasonable it might have been for the parties to reach such an arrangement if they had applied their minds to the question, and where the court must rely entirely on the conduct of the parties both as the basis from which to infer a common intention to share the property beneficially and as the conduct relied on to give rise to a constructive trust. In this situation direct contributions to the purchase price by the partner who is not the legal owner, whether initially or by payment of mortgage instalments, will readily justify the inference necessary to the creation of a constructive trust. But, as I read the authorities, it is at least extremely doubtful whether anything less will do.’

Lord Bridge of Harwich, Lord Griffiths, Lord Ackner, Lord Oliver of Aylmerton, Lord Jauncey of Tullichettle
[1991] 1 AC 107, [1990] 2 WLR 867, [1990] 1 All ER 1111, [1990] UKHL 4, [1990] UKHL 14
Bailii, Bailii
Land Registration Act 1925 70(1)(g), Law of Property Act 1925 53(1)
England and Wales
Citing:
CitedPettitt v Pettitt HL 23-Apr-1969
A husband and wife disputed ownership of the matrimonial home in the context of the presumption of advancement.
Lord Reid said: ‘These considerations have largely lost their force under present conditions, and, unless the law has lost its . .
CitedGissing v Gissing HL 7-Jul-1970
Evidence Needed to Share Benefical Inerests
The family home had been purchased during the marriage in the name of the husband only. The wife asserted that she had a beneficial interest in it.
Held: The principles apply to any case where a beneficial interest in land is claimed by a . .
CitedEves v Eves CA 28-Apr-1975
The couple were unmarried. The female partner had been led by the male partner to believe, when they set up home together, that the property would belong to them jointly. He had had told her that the only reason why the property was to be acquired . .
CitedGrant v Edwards and Edwards CA 24-Mar-1986
A couple were not married but lived together in Vincent Farmhouse in which the plaintiff claimed a beneficial interest on separation. The female partner was told by the male partner that the only reason for not acquiring the property in joint names . .
Appeal fromLloyds Bank plc v Rosset CA 13-May-1988
Claim by a wife that she has a beneficial interest in a house registered in the sole name of her husband and that her interest has priority over the rights of a bank under a legal charge executed without her knowledge. The case raises a point of . .

Cited by:
CitedChan, Chun v Leung, Ho CA 29-Jul-2002
The claimant sought to assert her interest in a house purchased by a company in debt to the respondent for whom she had worked and with whom she had had a relationship. The company was insolvent. She claimed he had promised her a house, and that it . .
ConsideredSpringett v Defoe CA 1992
Partners lived together, without being married, as secure joint tenants. They exercised the right to buy, contributing three quarters and one quarter of the price respectively. At the time they intended to marry. They did not discuss he shares, and . .
CitedEvans v James (Administratrix of the Estate of Thomas Hopkin Deceased) CA 5-Jul-1999
Before the parties called evidence, and having read the papers, the court considered that there was no real defence shown, and invited submissions. Negotiations for the grant of a tenancy had been terminated by the sudden illness of the proposed . .
CitedHyett v Stanley and others CA 20-Jun-2003
The couple had lived together at the property without being married for several years. The house was held in the man’s sole name, and after his death she sought a half share in it. It was established that she had been told she should have a half . .
CitedYaxley v Gotts and Another CA 24-Jun-1999
Oral Agreement Creating Proprietory Estoppel
The defendant offered to give to the Plaintiff, a builder, the ground floor of a property in return for converting the house, and then managing it. They were friends, and the oral offer was accepted. The property was then actually bought in the name . .
CitedOxley v Hiscock CA 6-May-2004
The parties were not married, but had brought together their resources to purchase a home in the name of one of them. Nothing had been said about the respective shares on which the property was to be held.
Held: The shares were to be assessed . .
FollowedMidland Bank v Cooke and Another CA 13-Jul-1995
Equal equitable interest inferrable without proof
The bank sought to enforce a charge given by the husband to secure a business loan. The property was purchased from the husband’s and his family’s resources and the loan, and was in his name. There had been no discussion or agreement between husband . .
CitedDrake v Whipp CA 30-Nov-1995
The parties, an unmarried cohabiting couple, disputed their respective shares in a property held in the man’s sole name. Both had made direct contributions both to the purchase of a barn and to its expensive conversion into a home. The plaintiff . .
CitedGoodchild and Another v Goodchild CA 2-May-1997
The deceased and his wife made wills in virtually identical form. The husband changed his will after their divorce, but his son and other wife claimed that the couple had intended the wills to be part of a larger arrangement of their affairs, . .
CitedCobbe v Yeomans Row Management Ltd and Others ChD 25-Feb-2005
Principles for Proprietary Estoppel
A developer claimed to have agreed that upon obtaining necessary planning permissions for land belonging to the respondents, he would purchase the land at a price reflecting its new value. The defendant denied that any legally enforceable agreement . .
CitedStack v Dowden CA 13-Jul-2005
The parties purchased a property together. The transfer contained a survivorship restriction but no declaration of the beneficial interests. The judge had held the property to be held as tenants in commn on equal shares.
Held: In a case where . .
CitedVan Laethem v Brooker and Another ChD 12-Jul-2005
The claimant asserted an interest in several properties by virtue of a common intention constructive trust or by proprietary estoppel. The parties had been engaged to be married.
Held: ‘A [constructive] trust arises in connection with the . .
CitedKyriakides v Pippas 2004
When considering the trusts on which land is held, and where there is no declaration of trust, the court puts itself in the position of a jury and considers all the circumstances of the case, so as to arrive at the purchaser’s real intention: ‘I . .
CitedCrossley v Crossley CA 21-Dec-2005
The claimant appealed an order that a house was to be held in equal shares with her son. The house was registered in their joint names, but the transfer contained no declaration of the interests. The house had been originally bought by the mother . .
CitedStack v Dowden HL 25-Apr-2007
The parties had cohabited for a long time, in a home bought by Ms Dowden. After the breakdown of the relationship, Mr Stack claimed an equal interest in the second family home, which they had bought in joint names. The House was asked whether, when . .
CitedHealey v Brown ChD 25-Apr-2002
The two deceased had made mutual wills bequeathing the family home. The survivor transferred the property during his life to defeat the agreement. It was now said that the arrangement fell foul of the 1989 Act and was unenforceable.
Held: . .
CitedHopton v Miller ChD 31-Aug-2010
The parties had entered into partnership to open and run a restaurant, but without a formal agreement. They differed as to the values contributed by their respective efforts. After failures to disclose materials requested, the defendant we precluded . .
CitedWilliams v Lawrence and Another ChD 28-Jul-2011
The claimant, as trustee for the deceased’s insolvent estate, sought a declaration that a transfer of the deceased’s share in property made by the executors was void as being at an undervalue. The property was subject to a right of occupation in . .
CitedScott v Southern Pacific Mortgages Ltd and Others SC 22-Oct-2014
The appellant challenged a sale and rent back transaction. He said that the proposed purchaser had misrepresented the transaction to them. The Court was asked s whether the home owners had interests whose priority was protected by virtue of section . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Trusts, Estoppel

Leading Case

Updated: 02 November 2021; Ref: scu.180914

Oastler v Henderson: 1877

The tenancy was for seven years. Shortly after its creation, the tenant left the keys with the agent and asked him to dispose of it or make the best bargain for surrender he could, and left for America. A tenant not being found, the agent returned the keys to the Landlord, who advertised it for reletting. Save for a short period until it was relet it was vacant. The tenant argued that the occupation by the landlord’s workmen took effect as an implied surrender at law.
Held: The court considered when there might be an implied surrender of a tenancy and particularly when the tenant might claim an estoppel. There can be no estoppel creating a surrender of a lease by a mere verbal agreement to surrender. There had to be, in addition, some act done which was inconsistent with the continuance of the lease.
Brett LJ said: ‘There can be no estoppel by mere verbal agreement; there must be in addition to such agreement some act done which is inconsistent with the continuance of the lease. If after the agreement the landlord actually takes possession or does what virtually amounts to it, if he not only attempts to let, but actually does let, then there is a palpable act done with regard to the premises raising an estoppel within the rule laid down in Nickells v Atherstone . . following Lyon v Reed.’ and ‘The plaintiffs’ workmen, were, it is true, let into two of the rooms for a time, but that was not by way of taking possession.’
Cockburn CJ said: ‘The mere attempting to let does not amount to an estoppel. The landlords did nothing but what they might reasonably be expected to do under the circumstances for the benefit of all parties.’ As to the occupation by the workmen: ‘But up to that date they had not done such an act, for they had not virtually taken possession of the premises; and in order to estop the lessors, so as to constitute a surrender by operation of law, there must be a taking of possession. I do not say a physical taking of possession, but, at all events, something amounting to a virtual taking of possession. But here there was no such taking of possession.’ and ‘As for the fact that the plaintiffs’ workmen used two of the rooms in 1870, I do not think that any jury ought to hold that to be equivalent to a taking of possession, for it is, under the circumstances, quite consistent with an intention to hold the defendant to his lease.’
. . And ‘The plaintiffs then, by letting the premises to a new tenant, put an end to the defendant’s term from that date, for they thereby did an act so inconsistent with the continuance of the defendant’s term, that they were estopped from denying that it was at an end. But up to that date they had not done such an act, for they had not virtually taken possession of the premises; and in order to estop the lessors, so as to constitute a surrender by operation of law, there must be a taking of possession. I do not say a physical taking of possession, but, at all events, something amounting to a virtual taking of possession. The plaintiffs, the landlords, took the keys because they could not help themselves, the defendant being gone and, for all they knew, not likely to return.’
Bramwell LJ regarded the fact that the rooms were used as simply a natural thing for them to do in circumstances where they thought the defendant was not going to return.

Cockburn CJ, Brett LJ, Bramwell LJ
[1877] 2 QBD 575
England and Wales
Cited by:
CitedEaling Family Housing Association Ltd v McKenzie CA 10-Oct-2003
The defendant and his wife separated when she left the flat they shared. She accepted a new tenancy of other premises. The landlord claimed possession of the flat, saying that the tenancy had ended.
Held: There was no express surrender within . .
CitedMatthews v Pournasrollahzadeh and Another CA 9-Mar-1998
The tenant fell into arrears, and discussed a surrender with the landlord. It had been intended that the landlord would waive any arrears, but he then claimed that there had been an implied surrender by law, and that the arrears remained.
CitedJohn Laing Construction Ltd v Amber Pass Ltd ChD 7-Apr-2004
The landlord resisted the exercise of a break clause saying that the entire premises had not been vacated. The difference was as to whether mere vacation was enough, or whether the tenant had to do some further positive act. The tenant had left . .
CitedRelvok Properties Ltd v Dixon CA 1972
A lease was assigned to a Mr Krokidis who then departed. The landlords instructed Estate Agents to change the locks. The defendants said that that amounted to a surrender of the lease.
Held: They were wrong: ‘In my judgment Judge Irving . .
CitedBurrows v Brent London Borough Council HL 31-Oct-1996
The authority had obtained a possession order from its secure tenant but then agreed to accept payments toward the arrears. The tenant applied for and was granted a declaration that she had on that agreement acquired a new tenancy. The authority . .
CitedArtworld Financial Corporation v Safaryan and Others CA 27-Feb-2009
The parties disputed whether the landlord had accepted the surrender of a lease. The tenant had handed in the keys. The landlord claimed rent for the subsequent period. The court had found surrender by operation of law, the landlord taking several . .
CitedPadwick Properties Ltd v Punj Lloyd Ltd ChD 9-Mar-2016
The tenant had left the property, their solicitors writing informing the landlord that it had vacated the Property and asserting that ‘the security and safety of the Property will revert to your client.’ The keys were returned, and on the insolvency . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Estoppel, Landlord and Tenant

Leading Case

Updated: 02 November 2021; Ref: scu.187715

Willmott v Barber: ChD 19 Jun 1880

In 1869 Barber granted a 99-year lease of three acres of land in east London, subject to a covenant against assignment or sub-letting without consent. In 1874, in breach of covenant, he sub-let one acre on an annual tenancy to Willmott (who owned a sawmill on adjoining land) and gave him an option to acquire the whole of the three acres. Willmott spent money in levelling the land and laying it out as a timber-yard. In 1877 Barber purported to surrender his term to his landlord, Bowyer, and take an immediate re-grant (it is not clear whether Barber was dishonest or simply disorganised). Then Willmott exercised his option and sued Barber for specific performance, joining Bowyer as a party and seeking a declaration that he had unreasonably refused consent. The real issue was whether Bowyer had disabled himself, by acquiescence, from objecting to the breach of covenant. The court described five elements which were required to be shown if a person’s legal rights were to be overborne by a proprietary estoppel. ‘It has been said that the acquiescence which will deprive a man of his legal rights must amount to fraud, and in my view that is an abbreviated statement of a very true proposition. A man is not to be deprived of his legal rights unless he has acted in such a way as would make it fraudulent for him to set up those rights. What, then, are the elements or requisites necessary to constitute fraud of that description? In the first place the plaintiff must have made a mistake as to his legal rights. Secondly, the plaintiff must have expended some money or must have done some act (not necessarily upon the defendant’s land) on the faith of his mistaken belief. Thirdly, the defendant, the possessor of the legal right, must know of the existence of his own right which is inconsistent with the right claimed by the plaintiff. If he does not know of it he is in the same position as the plaintiff, and the doctrine of acquiescence is founded upon conduct with a knowledge of your legal rights. Fourthly, the defendant, the possessor of the legal right, must know of the plaintiff’s mistaken belief of his rights. If he does not, there is nothing which calls upon him to assert his own rights. Lastly,’- if I may digress, this is the important element as far as this appeal is concerned – ‘the defendant, the possessor of the legal right, must have encouraged the plaintiff in his expenditure of money or in the other acts which he has done, either directly or by abstaining from asserting his legal right.’ The court rejected a rigid approach, concluding:- ‘… principle requires a very much broader approach which is directed at ascertaining whether, in particular individual circumstances, it would be unconscionable for a party to deny that which, knowingly or unknowingly, he has allowed or encouraged another to assume to his detriment’. and ‘The inquiry which I have to make therefore, as it seems to me, is simply whether, in all the circumstances of this case, it was unconscionable for the defendants to seek to take advantage of the mistake which, at the material time, everybody shared …’.

Fry J
(1880) 15 ChD 96, [1880] UKLawRpCh 183, (1880) 43 LT 95
England and Wales
Citing:
CitedRamsden v Dyson HL 1866
The Vice-Chancellor had held that two tenants of Sir John Ramsden, the owner of a large estate near Huddersfield, were entitled to long leases of plots on the estate. They ostensibly held the plots as tenants at will only, but they had spent their . .

Cited by:
ExplainedTaylors Fashions Ltd v Liverpool Victoria Trustees Co Ltd ChD 1981
The fundamental principle that equity is concerned to prevent unconscionable conduct permeates all the elements of the doctrine of estoppel. In the light of the more recent cases, the principle ‘requires a very much broader approach which is . .
CitedGonthier and Another v Orange Contract Scaffolding Ltd CA 25-Jun-2003
The question of a proprietary estoppel as between landlord and tenant arose. An agreement had been reached subject to contract for the grant of a lease, with an option to purchase. The tenant was allowed into possession before the documentation was . .
CitedStrover and Another v Strover and Another ChD 10-May-2005
Insurance policies had been taken out by the partners in a firm. The surviving family of one and the remaining partners contested ownership. The policy was held in part for the benefit of the family. The premiums had been paid from partnership . .
CitedYeoman’s Row Management Ltd and Another v Cobbe HL 30-Jul-2008
The parties agreed in principle for the sale of land with potential development value. Considerable sums were spent, and permission achieved, but the owner then sought to renegotiate the deal.
Held: The appeal succeeded in part. The finding . .
CitedSt Pancras and Humanist Housing Association Ltd v Leonard CA 17-Dec-2008
The claimant sought possession of a garage. The defendant claimed adverse possession.
Held: The defendant’s appeal against an order for possession failed. The defendant had attended a meeting where his behaviour had allowed other parties to . .
CitedShaw v Applegate CA 1977
There was a covenant against the use of a property as an amusement arcade. Within three years the purchaser had installed amusement machines, but it was not until three years later that the plaintiffs issued proceedings for an injunction and . .
Appeal from (ChD)Willmott v Barber CA 24-Jun-1881
The Judge, at the trial of an action in which there was a claim and counterclaim, thinking both parties in the wrong, dismissed the action without costs, and also dismissed the counter-claim with costs, but ordered that if the costs of the . .
CitedHopgood v Brown CA 3-Feb-1955
Two adjoining plots were conveyed to the same purchaser. Buildings were constructed, and the adjusted boundary required an obtuse angle. The plots were sold on separately but with the original straight boundaries. The plans on the conveyances had no . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Landlord and Tenant, Equity, Estoppel

Leading Case

Updated: 02 November 2021; Ref: scu.188218

Central London Property Trust Ltd v High Trees House Ltd: KBD 1947

Promissory Estoppel Created

The plaintiff leased a block a flats to the defendant in 1939, at an annual rental of pounds 2500. High Trees had difficulty in filling the flats because of the war, and the parties agreed in writing in 1940 to reduce the rental to a half. No time period for the reduction was set. High Trees paid the reduced rent for five years and by late 1945, the flats were full. Central London sought to re-instate the full rent from the second half of 1945, as the war ended.
Held: The 1940 agreement was intended to accommodate the peculiar circumstances brought about by war and so lasted only as long as the war. With the flats full by 1945, and now that the war had ended, the variation no longer applied. Central London was now entitled to the full rental. (Obiter) An action for arrears for the years 1940-45 would have failed. The plaintiff was subject to a promissory estoppel. It had made a promise. The defendant had relied upon that promise, and despite the absence of consideration, it would have been unjust to have allowed such a claim. This was an estoppel, a rule of evidence, preventing an ‘unjust departure by a party from an assumption of fact which he has caused another party to adopt or accept for the purpose of their legal relations’.
Denning J said: ‘where parties enter into an arrangement which is intended to create legal relations between them and in pursuance of such arrangement one party makes a promise to the other which he knows will be acted on and which is in fact acted on by the promissee, the court will treat the promise as binding on the promisor to the extent that it will not allow him to act inconsistently with it even although the promise may not be supported by consideration in the strict sense and the effect of the arrangement made is to vary the terms of a contract under seal by one of less value.’

Denning J
[1947] 1 KB 130, [1956] 1 All ER 256, [1947] LJR 77, [1947] 175 LT 332, [1947] 62 TLR 557
England and Wales
Citing:
AppliedHughes v Metropolitan Railway Co HL 1877
A notice to repair had been served by the landlord on the tenant. The tenant wrote offering to buy the premises and proposed deferring the commencement of repairs until the landlord responded. The landlord replied by letter asking the price. It was . .
CitedBirmingham and District Land Co v London and North Western Railway CA 1886
The court considered the creation of an estoppel: Cotton LJ: ‘. . what passed did not make a new agreement, but . . what took place . . raised an equity against him.’
Bowen LJ said: ‘The truth is that the proposition is wider than cases of . .

Cited by:
CitedDun and Bradstreet Software Services (England) Ltd; Dun and Bradstreet Software Services Ltd v Provident Mutual Life Assurance Association and General Accident Linked Life Assurance CA 9-Jun-1997
Break clauses had been exercised on behalf of the plaintiffs. The defendant landlords appealed a decision upholding the notices. A penalty rent had been sought.
Held: There had been no sufficient agency established to validate the notice. The . .
ExplainedCombe v Combe CA 1951
The defendant husband had promised his wife to allow her andpound;100 a year free of tax, without his wife furnishing any consideration for the promise. On his failing to pay, she sued on the promise.
Held: Her claim failed. The court declined . .
CitedSmith v Lawson CA 5-Jun-1997
. .
CitedThe Prudential Assurance Company Ltd v Ayres and Grew ChD 3-Apr-2007
The defendants argued that they were not liable as guarantors under an Authorised Guarantee Agreement for a lease when the assignee tenant had become insolvent.
Held: The guarantors were liable provided that the extent of the claim did not . .
CitedCollier v P and M J Wright (Holdings) Ltd CA 14-Dec-2007
Agreement for payment by joint debtor not contract
The claimant appealed against refusal of an order to set aside a statutory demand. He said that he had compromised a claim by the creditors. He argued for an extension to the Rule in Pinnel’s case, so that where a debtor agrees to pay part of a . .
CitedD and C Builders Ltd v Rees CA 1966
The plaintiff builders had been chasing payment of their undisputed invoice. Knowing that the builders were in financial difficulties, the defendant offered rather less, saying that if it was not accepted, she would pay nothing. She made the payment . .
CitedWestern Fish Products Ltd v Penwith District Council and Another CA 22-May-1978
Estoppel Cannot Oust Statutory Discretion
The plaintiff had been refused planning permission for a factory. The refusals were followed by the issue of Enforcement Notices and Stop Notices. The plaintiff said that they had been given re-assurances upon which they had relied.
Held: The . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Estoppel, Landlord and Tenant, Contract

Leading Case

Updated: 02 November 2021; Ref: scu.188168

Collier v P and M J Wright (Holdings) Ltd: CA 14 Dec 2007

Agreement for payment by joint debtor not contract

The claimant appealed against refusal of an order to set aside a statutory demand. He said that he had compromised a claim by the creditors. He argued for an extension to the Rule in Pinnel’s case, so that where a debtor agrees to pay part of a joint debt, and to become severally liable for that part, the parties have necessarily entered into a binding agreement for good consideration that the debtor’s liability for the rest of the joint debt is discharged. He had been one of three partners owing a substantial debt to the creditors. He said he had been told he would not be pursued if he paid at a third of the rate for all three, and that he had done so.
Held: The fact that a creditor agrees with a joint debtor to accept payment from him alone of his proportionate share does not result in a binding agreement. Accordingly, this factual paradigm does not constitute yet another situation when the rule in Pinnel’s case is avoided.
As to the argument that an estoppel had been created, the effect of promissory estoppel is usually suspensory only, but, if the effect of resiling is sufficiently inequitable, a debtor may be able to show that the right to recover the debt is not merely postponed but extinguished. The defendant had an arguable case for an estoppel, and the appeal was allowed.

Mummery LJ, Arden LJ, Longmore LJ
[2007] EWCA Civ 1329, [2007] NPC 136, [2008] 1 WLR 643, [2007] BPIR 1452
Bailii
England and Wales
Citing:
CitedPinnel’s Case, Penny v Core CCP 1602
Payment of Lesser Sum Not Satisfaction
(Court of Common Pleas) The payment of a lesser sum on the day in satisfaction of a greater, cannot be any satisfaction for the whole. The gift of a horse, hawk, robe, etc., in satisfaction, is good. Payment of part before the day and acceptance may . .
CitedFoakes v Beer HL 16-May-1884
Mrs Beer had obtained judgment against Dr Foakes for andpound;2,090 19s. He asked for time to pay and they agreed with him, acknowledging the debt, and paying part immediately and undertaking to pay the balance over a period of time. In . .
CitedIn Re Selectmove Ltd CA 21-Dec-1993
Promisse to Pay Tax due is not Consideration
The company appealed against an order for its winding up, saying that the debt was disputed, an accomodation having been reached with the Revenue.
Held: The court declined to regard a promise to the Revenue by a company to pay its existing . .
CitedWilliams v Roffey Brothers and Nicholls (Contractors) Ltd CA 23-Nov-1989
The defendant subcontracted some of its work under a building contract to the plaintiff at a price which left him in financial difficulty and there was a risk that the work would not be completed by the plaintiff. The defendant agreed to make . .
CitedAlpine Bulk Transport Co Inc v Saudi Eagle Shipping Co Inc The ‘Saudi Eagle’ CA 1986
The defendants, believing that they had no assets, deliberately allowed an interlocutory judgment for damages to be assessed to be entered against them by default, and only after damages had been assessed and final judgment entered, realising that . .
CitedBryce Ashworth v Newnote Ltd CA 27-Jul-2007
The appellant challenged a refusal to set aside a statutory demand, in respect of his director’s loan account with the respondent company, saying the court should have accepted other accounts to set off against that debt.
Held: A statutory . .
CitedKellar v BBR Graphic Engineers (Yorks) Ltd ChD 2002
The court was asked whether the district judge had applied the right test on an application to set aside a statutory demand because the conclusions of the district judge referred to a real prospect of success, the test used in CPR 24.2, rather than . .
CitedHughes v Metropolitan Railway Co HL 1877
A notice to repair had been served by the landlord on the tenant. The tenant wrote offering to buy the premises and proposed deferring the commencement of repairs until the landlord responded. The landlord replied by letter asking the price. It was . .
CitedCentral London Property Trust Ltd v High Trees House Ltd KBD 1947
Promissory Estoppel Created
The plaintiff leased a block a flats to the defendant in 1939, at an annual rental of pounds 2500. High Trees had difficulty in filling the flats because of the war, and the parties agreed in writing in 1940 to reduce the rental to a half. No time . .
CitedTool Metal Manufactuing Company Ltd v Tungsten Electric Company Ltd HL 16-Jun-1955
The principle in Hughes v Metropolitan Railway could apply to a reduction by concession in payments due to a creditor and a concession could be terminated by giving reasonable notice. . .
CitedD and C Builders Ltd v Rees CA 1966
The plaintiff builders had been chasing payment of their undisputed invoice. Knowing that the builders were in financial difficulties, the defendant offered rather less, saying that if it was not accepted, she would pay nothing. She made the payment . .
CitedCouldery v Bartrum 1881
coulder_bartrum1881
A secured creditor was not entitled to amend after a composition had been taken and completed. Sir George Jessel MR said: ‘According to English common law a creditor might accept anything in satisfaction of his debt except a less amount of money. He . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Insolvency, Contract, Estoppel

Leading Case

Updated: 02 November 2021; Ref: scu.262160

Ramsden v Dyson: HL 1866

The Vice-Chancellor had held that two tenants of Sir John Ramsden, the owner of a large estate near Huddersfield, were entitled to long leases of plots on the estate. They ostensibly held the plots as tenants at will only, but they had spent their own money in building on the strength of assurances, said to have been given to them by the landowner’s agent, that they would never be disturbed.
Held: The decision was overturned. The difference of opinion was over an issue of fact, that is the substance of what was said on the occasion when some tenants agreed to be tenants at lower rents than were being paid by other tenants of Sir John Ramsden.
Lord Kingsdown, dissenting on the facts, said: ‘The rule of law applicable to the case appears to me to be this; if a man, under a verbal agreement with a landlord for a certain interest in land, or what amounts to the same thing, under an expectation, created or encouraged by the landlord, that he shall have a certain interest, takes possession of such land, with the consent of the landlord, and upon the faith of such promise or expectation, with the knowledge of the landlord, and without objection by him, lays out money upon the land, a Court of equity will compel the landlord to give effect to such promise or expectation. This was the principle of the decision in Gregory v. Mighell 18 Ves. 328, and, as I conceive, is open to no doubt.’ Even if there were uncertainty as to the terms of the contract, a court of equity could nevertheless interfere in order to prevent fraud but that it was unclear what, in that case, the remedy should be. The choices were between the grant of a specific interest in the land and the grant of a restitutionary remedy such as monetary compensation.
Lord Cranworth LC said: ‘If any one makes an assurance to another, with or without consideration, that he will do or will abstain from doing a particular act, but he refuses to bind himself, and says that for the performance of what he has promised the person to whom the promise has been made must rely on the honour of the person who has made it, this excludes the jurisdiction of Courts of equity no less than of Courts of law.’

Lord Cranworth LC, Lord Wensleydale and Lord Westbury, Lord Kingsdown dissenting
[1866] LR 1 HL 129, [1866] 12 Jur NS 506
England and Wales
Cited by:
CitedTaylors Fashions Ltd v Liverpool Victoria Trustees Co Ltd ChD 1981
The fundamental principle that equity is concerned to prevent unconscionable conduct permeates all the elements of the doctrine of estoppel. In the light of the more recent cases, the principle ‘requires a very much broader approach which is . .
CitedGonthier and Another v Orange Contract Scaffolding Ltd CA 25-Jun-2003
The question of a proprietary estoppel as between landlord and tenant arose. An agreement had been reached subject to contract for the grant of a lease, with an option to purchase. The tenant was allowed into possession before the documentation was . .
CitedHoliday Inns Inc v Broadhead 1974
The parties negotiated for a lease, but never signed a contract. The plaintiff expended considerable sums to try to get planning, and once acquired it sought to buy the land, and claimed that Mr Broadhead had taken an unconscionable advantage, . .
CitedCobbe v Yeomans Row Management Ltd and Others ChD 25-Feb-2005
Principles for Proprietary Estoppel
A developer claimed to have agreed that upon obtaining necessary planning permissions for land belonging to the respondents, he would purchase the land at a price reflecting its new value. The defendant denied that any legally enforceable agreement . .
CriticisedCrabb v Arun District Council CA 23-Jul-1975
The plaintiff was led to believe that he would acquire a right of access to his land. In reliance on that belief he sold off part of his land, leaving the remainder landlocked.
Held: His claim to have raised an equity was upheld. The plaintiff . .
FollowedInwards v Baker CA 13-Jan-1965
An indulgent father had encouraged his son to build a bungalow on his, the father’s, land. The son had done so in the expectation, encouraged by the father, that he would be permitted to remain in occupation.
Held: The court formulated the . .
CitedWillmott v Barber ChD 19-Jun-1880
In 1869 Barber granted a 99-year lease of three acres of land in east London, subject to a covenant against assignment or sub-letting without consent. In 1874, in breach of covenant, he sub-let one acre on an annual tenancy to Willmott (who owned a . .
CitedStrover and Another v Strover and Another ChD 10-May-2005
Insurance policies had been taken out by the partners in a firm. The surviving family of one and the remaining partners contested ownership. The policy was held in part for the benefit of the family. The premiums had been paid from partnership . .
CitedVehicles and Supplies Ltd and others v Financial Institutions Services Ltd PC 28-Jun-2005
(Jamaica) Parties had entered into a joint venture, before one fell into severe financial difficulties. A scheme of arrangement was proposed in which plots which were part of the development would be apportioned, but steps were not taken to complete . .
CitedUglow v Uglow and others CA 27-Jul-2004
The deceased had in 1976 made a promise to the claimant. The promise was not honoured in the will, and the claimant asserted a proprietary estoppel.
Held: The judge was right to have found that the promise was bound up with the claimant being . .
CitedThorner v Curtis and others ChD 26-Oct-2007
The claimant said that the deceased, his father and a farmer, had made representations to him over many years that if the claimant continued to work on the farm, he would leave the farm to him in his will. He died intestate. He claimed a proprietary . .
CitedYeoman’s Row Management Ltd and Another v Cobbe HL 30-Jul-2008
The parties agreed in principle for the sale of land with potential development value. Considerable sums were spent, and permission achieved, but the owner then sought to renegotiate the deal.
Held: The appeal succeeded in part. The finding . .
CitedThorner v Major and others CA 2-Jul-2008
The deceased had written a will, revoked it but then not made another. The claimant had worked for the deceased understanding that property would be left to him, and now claimed that the estate property was held under a trust for him.
Held: . .
CitedThorner v Major and others HL 25-Mar-2009
The deceased had made a will including a gift to the claimant, but had then revoked the will. The claimant asserted that an estoppel had been created in his favour over a farm, and that the defendant administrators of the promisor’s estate held it . .
CitedWestern Fish Products Ltd v Penwith District Council and Another CA 22-May-1978
Estoppel Cannot Oust Statutory Discretion
The plaintiff had been refused planning permission for a factory. The refusals were followed by the issue of Enforcement Notices and Stop Notices. The plaintiff said that they had been given re-assurances upon which they had relied.
Held: The . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Estoppel, Landlord and Tenant, Equity

Leading Case

Updated: 01 November 2021; Ref: scu.188171

Yat Tung Investment Co Ltd v Dao Heng Bank Ltd: PC 1975

Restraint of Second Action as Abuse

Hong Kong – A company purchased a property from the defendant bank who had taken it back into possession from a former borrower. The company itself fell into arrears, the property was taken back again and resold. The company sought a declaration that the sale had been a sham and a fraud. That allegation was dropped, and judgement entered for the bank. It then began a second action, the current one. The bank sought to restrain the second action, saying it was an abuse.
Held: The issues in this action should have been raised in the first. There had been opportunity to raise the the issues as to incorrect accounting. Not having challenged those matters in the first action, and having suffered judgment, it would be wrong to allow a second action, and an estoppel by record arose. ‘it becomes an abuse of process to raise in subsequent proceedings matters which could and therefore should have been litigated in earlier proceedings.’ However, litigants are not without scrupulous examination of all the circumstances to be denied the right to bring a genuine subject of litigation before the court

Morris of Borth-y-Guest, Cross of Chelsea, Kilbrandon LL
[1975] AC 581
Commonwealth
Citing:
ApprovedHenderson v Henderson 20-Jul-1843
Abuse of Process and Re-litigation
The court set down the principles to be applied in abuse of process cases, where a matter was raised again which should have been dealt with in earlier proceedings.
Sir James Wigram VC said: ‘In trying this question I believe I state the rule . .

Cited by:
CitedJ A Pye (Oxford) Limited v South Gloucestershire District Council CA 26-Oct-2000
The company appealed an award by way of valuation for land which was to valued as if purchased compulsorily. It was argued that they were raising points which should have been litigated before the Lands Tribunal.
Held: The appeal to the court . .
CitedBerry v Post Office Investigation Department CA 11-Nov-1996
The claimant’s property was raided twice, and stamps removed. The first search led to charges which were dropped. He sought the return of all the property removed. In later proceedings it was said that a new claim was being made which was res . .
CitedJohnson v Gore Wood and Co HL 14-Dec-2000
Shareholder May Sue for Additional Personal Losses
A company brought a claim of negligence against its solicitors, and, after that claim was settled, the company’s owner brought a separate claim in respect of the same subject-matter.
Held: It need not be an abuse of the court for a shareholder . .
CitedC (A Minor) v Hackney London Borough Council CA 10-Nov-1995
The mother had claimed in damages for the injuries to her health from the landlord authority’s failure to repair. Her child then brought a subsequent action in respect of his own injuries. The authority claimed the action should be stopped as res . .
CitedBradford and Bingley Building Society v Seddon and Hancock; Walsh and Rhodes (Trading As Hancocks (a Firm) CA 11-Mar-1999
There was an unsatisfied judgment on a claim by a defendant in an earlier action against a third party. In a subsequent action against the defendant the latter issued third party proceedings against the original and different third parties.
CitedVirgin Atlantic Airways Ltd v Zodiac Seats UK Ltd SC 3-Jul-2013
Virgin Atlantic Airways Ltd sought to recover damages exceeding 49,000,000 pounds for the infringement of a European Patent which did not exist in the form said to have been infringed. The Technical Board of Appeal of the European Patent Office had . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Estoppel, Litigation Practice

Leading Case

Updated: 01 November 2021; Ref: scu.185838

Coke-Wallis, Regina (on The Application of) v Institute of Chartered Accountants In England and Wales: SC 19 Jan 2011

The appellant chartered accountant had been convicted in Jersey after removing documents from his offices relating to a disputed trust and in breach of an order from his professional institute. The court now considered the relevance and application of the principles of autrefois acquit, res judicata and abuse of process after the Institute began a first and now a second set of disciplinary proceedings, the appellant saying that the issues arose from the same matters. The Institute said that the two complaints were under different regulations. The first complaint had failed through their error.
Held: The institiute’s appeal failed. The first decision of the disciplinary panel was both final and as to the merits, the conviction having no indictable parallel within England and Wales. The principles of res judicata and autrefois convict do apply to professional disciplinary proceedings. All the constituent elements of cause of action estoppel were established on the facts. Whether a public interest exception could be created to established law was properly for Parliament and not the courts.

Lord Phillips, President, Lord Rodger, Lord Collins, Lord Clarke, Lord Dyson
[2011] UKSC 2, UKSC 2009/0175, [2011] ICR 224, [2011] 2 All ER 1, [2011] 2 AC 146, [2011] 2 WLR 103
Bailii, Bailii Summary, SC Summary, SC
England and Wales
Citing:
CitedThoday v Thoday CA 1964
The court discussed the difference between issue estoppel, and action estoppel: ‘The particular type of estoppel relied upon by the husband is estoppel per rem judicatam. This is a generic term which in modern law includes two species. The first . .
CitedAndreou v Institute of Chartered Accountants In England and Wales CA 25-Jul-1997
The appeallant having been found guilty in professional disciplinary proceedings sought to appeal, but was refused by the defendant saying that it had no discretion to extend the time for an appeal.
Held: The Institute exercised its . .
CitedConnelly v Director of Public Prosecutions HL 1964
Plea of Autrefois Acquit is Narrow in Scope
The defendant had been tried for and acquitted of murder. The prosecution then sought to have him tried for robbery out of the same alleged facts. The House considered his plea of autrefois convict.
Held: The majority identified a narrow . .
CitedThrasyvoulou v Secretary of State for the Environment HL 1990
A building owner appealed against enforcement notices which alleged that there had been a material change of use of his buildings in 1982. This notice was issued by a planning authority. As a result of the appeal an inspector determined that the . .
CitedMeyers v Casey 13-Oct-1913
(High Court of Australia) The Court considered a decision of the committee of the Victoria Racing Club. Isaac J said of objections considered by the committee: ‘They are, by reason of the committee’s decision, res judicatae, as much as if instead of . .
CitedHarry Lee Wee v The Law Society of Singapore PC 3-Dec-1984
(Singapore) The principles of autrefois acquit applied to professional disciplinary proceedings. Lord Bridge said: ‘No one would dispute that the doctrine of autrefois convict and acquit is applicable to disciplinary proceedings under a statutory . .
CitedTrade Indemnity Co Ltd v Workington Harbour and Dock Board (No 2) HL 1938
The plaintiffs’ action was derived from a bond given by the defendants guaranteeing a contractor’s performance in building a dock for the plaintiffs. The bond provided that a certificate which complied with certain criteria would prove the amount . .
CitedArnold v National Westminster Bank Plc HL 1991
Tenants invited the court to construe the terms of a rent review provision in the sub-underlease under which they held premises. The provision had been construed in a sense adverse to them in earlier proceedings before Walton J, but they had been . .
CitedDunn v Murray 8-Jul-1829
Declaration stated, that in consideration that the plaintiff, at the request of the defendant, would enter into the employ of the defendant in a certain capacity for a year, at the rate of five guineas per week throughout the year, defendant . .
CitedBolton v The Law Society CA 8-Dec-1993
The solicitor who had been admitted to the Roll for two years had disbursed clients money to relatives, as part of the conveyance of property without adequate security but in the expectation that the money would be repaid. The Tribunal found that . .
CitedFidelitas Shipping Co Ltd v V/O Exportchleb CA 1965
Where there is an award that is on its face an interim award, then the arbitrator is only functus officio with respect to the issues dealt with in that interim award and retains the authority to deal with the remaining matters. Issue estoppel . .
CitedRegina v Secretary of State for Trade and Industry, Ex Parte Eastaway HL 8-Nov-2000
Where the Court of Appeal had refused permission to apply for judicial review after a similar refusal by a judge, that decision was also, by implication, a refusal to grant permission to appeal against the judge’s decision, and there was no scope . .
CitedDunn v Murray 8-Jul-1829
Declaration stated, that in consideration that the plaintiff, at the request of the defendant, would enter into the employ of the defendant in a certain capacity for a year, at the rate of five guineas per week throughout the year, defendant . .

Cited by:
CitedChristou and Another v London Borough of Haringey EAT 21-Feb-2012
EAT UNFAIR DISMISSAL – Reasonableness of dismissal
The Appellants, the social worker responsible for the care of Baby P and her team manager, were held not to have been unfairly dismissed by Haringey for . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Natural Justice, Estoppel

Leading Case

Updated: 01 November 2021; Ref: scu.428045

Western Fish Products Ltd v Penwith District Council and Another: CA 22 May 1978

Estoppel Cannot Oust Statutory Discretion

The plaintiff had been refused planning permission for a factory. The refusals were followed by the issue of Enforcement Notices and Stop Notices. The plaintiff said that they had been given re-assurances upon which they had relied.
Held: The appeal failed. The court tried to reconcile invocations of estoppel with the general principle that for a public authority: ‘an estoppel cannot be raised to prevent the exercise of a statutory discretion or to prevent or excuse the performance of a statutory duty.’
Estoppel cannot be used so as to fetter a statutory discretion entrusted to a local authority

Megaw, Lawton, Browne LJJ
[1981] 2 All ER 204, [1978] EWCA Civ 6, (1978) 38 P and CR 7
Bailii
England and Wales
Citing:
CitedHammersley v Baron De Biel, An Infant, By W J Blake, His Next Friend HL 25-Mar-1845
The Plaintiffs father, B, had agreed with one T that he would marry T’s daughter and provide a jointure for her in consideration of T’s undertaking to leave a sum of pounds 10,000 in his will to his daughter to be settled on her and her children. B . .
CitedRamsden v Dyson HL 1866
The Vice-Chancellor had held that two tenants of Sir John Ramsden, the owner of a large estate near Huddersfield, were entitled to long leases of plots on the estate. They ostensibly held the plots as tenants at will only, but they had spent their . .
CitedPlimmer v Mayor, Councillors and Citizens of the City of Wellington PC 1884
(New Zealand) Mr Plimmer had occupied land under a revocable licence from the Corporation’s predecessor-in-title and at their request had made extensive improvements to it. He sought compensation when the land was to be vested in the defendant. The . .
CitedEvenden v Guildford Football Club CA 1975
Lord Denning rejected an argument that, for promissory estoppels to apply, parties must be contractually bound to one another saying: ‘Promissory estoppel . . applies whenever a representation is made, whether of fact or law, present or future, . .
CitedMaritime Electric Company Limited v General Dairies Limited PC 8-Feb-1937
(Canada) . .
ApprovedBrooks and Burton Ltd v The Secretary of State for the Environment 1977
Lord Widgery, Lord Chief Justice, discussed extending the concept of estoppel saying: ‘There has been some advance in recent years of this doctrine of estoppel as applied to local authorities through their officers, and the most advanced case is the . .
CitedCentral London Property Trust Ltd v High Trees House Ltd KBD 1947
Promissory Estoppel Created
The plaintiff leased a block a flats to the defendant in 1939, at an annual rental of pounds 2500. High Trees had difficulty in filling the flats because of the war, and the parties agreed in writing in 1940 to reduce the rental to a half. No time . .
CitedSouthend-on-Sea Corporation v Hodgson (Wickford) Ltd QBD 1961
The Corporation had, by its engineer, said that its permission for the use of land as a builder’s yard was not in fact and law required. It was mistaken in this view.
Held: What the engineer had said could not create an estoppel preventing the . .
CitedCampbell Discount Company Ltd v Bridge CA 1961
Agreed compensation is not a penalty
A hirer under a hire purchase agreement could terminate the hiring during the course of the term whereupon the hirer was required to pay a sum by way of agreed compensation.
Held: A sum of money payable under a contract on the occurrence of an . .
CitedInwards v Baker CA 13-Jan-1965
An indulgent father had encouraged his son to build a bungalow on his, the father’s, land. The son had done so in the expectation, encouraged by the father, that he would be permitted to remain in occupation.
Held: The court formulated the . .
CitedWells v Minister of Housing and Local Government CA 1967
It had been the practice of planning authorities, acting through their officers, to tell applicants whether or not planning permission was necessary. A letter was written by the Council Engineer telling the applicants that no permission was . .
CitedLever (Finance) Ltd v City of Westminster CA 22-Jul-1970
The appellant developers had obtained detailed planning approval for fourteen houses, but after adjustments for a building line, moving several properties distances of several feet toward other properties, further plans were submitted without . .
CitedMoorgate Mercantile Company Ltd v Twitchings CA 1975
Lord Denning MR held: ‘Estoppel is not a rule of evidence. It is not a cause of action. It is a principle of justice and of equity. It comes to this. When a man, by his words or conduct, has led another to believe in a particular state of affairs, . .

Cited by:
CitedRegina (Reprotech (Pebsham) Ltd) v East Sussex County Council Reprotech (Pebsham) Ltd v Same HL 28-Feb-2002
The respondent company had asserted that the local authority had made a determination of the issue of whether electricity could be generated on a waste treatment site without further planning permission. The council said that without a formal . .
CitedDownderry Construction Ltd v Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions and Another Admn 11-Jan-2002
The applicant had an existing planning permission. They sought and received confirmation from the local authority that the permission remained in effect. They then sought a certificate of lawful use. The letter confirming the permission had been . .
CitedRegina v North and East Devon Health Authority ex parte Coughlan and Secretary of State for Health Intervenor and Royal College of Nursing Intervenor CA 16-Jul-1999
Consultation to be Early and Real Listening
The claimant was severely disabled as a result of a road traffic accident. She and others were placed in an NHS home for long term disabled people and assured that this would be their home for life. Then the health authority decided that they were . .
CitedStancliffe Stone Company Ltd v Peak District National Park Authority QBD 22-Jun-2004
The claimants sought a declaration. Planning permission had been confirmed for four mineral extraction sites by letter in 1952. In 1996, two were listed as now being dormant. The claimant said the letter of 1952 created on single planning permision . .
CitedLondon Borough of Bexley v Maison Maurice Ltd ChD 15-Dec-2006
The council had taken land by compulsory purchase in order to construct a dual carriageway. It then claimed that it had left undedicated a strip .5 metre wide as a ransom strip to prevent the defendant restoring access to the road.
Held: The . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Administrative, Estoppel, Local Government

Leading Case

Updated: 02 November 2021; Ref: scu.262693

Thorner v Major and others: CA 2 Jul 2008

The deceased had written a will, revoked it but then not made another. The claimant had worked for the deceased understanding that property would be left to him, and now claimed that the estate property was held under a trust for him.
Held: The defendant’s appeal succeded. An intention to create a trust would be insufficient. The claimant had to establish an estoppel. ‘while there is no special rule as to the form or nature of the promise, representation or assurance which is capable of providing the basis of a proprietary estoppel case as regards a claim against a deceased’s estate, it seems to me that the general requirements that there must be a clear and unequivocal representation, and that it must be intended to be relied on, or at the very least that it must be reasonably taken as intended to be relied on, are of no less importance in this type of case than in others, and they must be applied with care, given that statements may be made about testamentary intentions which are not necessarily intended to be taken as promises.’

Ward LJ, LLoyd LJ, Rimer Lj
(2008-09) 11 ITELR 344, [2008] 2 FCR 435, [2008] EWCA Civ 732, [2008] WTLR 1289, [2009] 3 All ER 945
Bailii
England and Wales
Citing:
CitedRamsden v Dyson HL 1866
The Vice-Chancellor had held that two tenants of Sir John Ramsden, the owner of a large estate near Huddersfield, were entitled to long leases of plots on the estate. They ostensibly held the plots as tenants at will only, but they had spent their . .
CitedMaddison v Alderson HL 1883
The requirement of the doctrine of part performance is that the acts of part performance relied upon must be ‘referable’ to the contract sued on. The principle underlying the doctrine of part performance was expressed by Lord Selborne: ‘In a suit . .
Appeal fromThorner v Curtis and others ChD 26-Oct-2007
The claimant said that the deceased, his father and a farmer, had made representations to him over many years that if the claimant continued to work on the farm, he would leave the farm to him in his will. He died intestate. He claimed a proprietary . .
CitedUglow v Uglow and others CA 27-Jul-2004
The deceased had in 1976 made a promise to the claimant. The promise was not honoured in the will, and the claimant asserted a proprietary estoppel.
Held: The judge was right to have found that the promise was bound up with the claimant being . .
CitedSchaefer v Schuman PC 1972
(New South Wales – Australia) A promise to leave the property had been performed, and the issue was as to the relevance, if any, and the effect of an earier promise when the value of the devise was sought to be reduced by an order by way of . .
CitedGrundy v Ottey CA 31-Jul-2003
The deceased left his estate within a discretionary trust. The claimant sought to assert an interest in it, claiming an estoppel and, under the 1975 Act, as his partner. They had lived together for four years. She had been dependent upon him . .
CitedJennings v Rice, Wilson, Marsh, Norris, Norris, and Reed CA 22-Feb-2002
The claimant asserted a proprietary estoppel against the respondents. He had worked for the deceased over many years, for little payment, and doing more and more for her. Though he still worked full time at first, he came to spend nights at the . .
CitedCampbell v Griffin and others CA 27-Jun-2001
. .
CitedGillett v Holt and Another CA 23-Mar-2000
Repeated Assurances Created Equitable Estoppel
Repeated assurances, given over years, that the claimant would acquire an interest in property on the death of the person giving the re-assurance, and upon which the claimant relied to his detriment, could found a claim of equitable estoppel. The . .
CitedTaylors Fashions Ltd v Liverpool Victoria Trustees Co Ltd ChD 1981
The fundamental principle that equity is concerned to prevent unconscionable conduct permeates all the elements of the doctrine of estoppel. In the light of the more recent cases, the principle ‘requires a very much broader approach which is . .
CitedIn re Basham dec’d; Basham v Basham 1986
The claimant and her husband had helped her mother and her stepfather throughout the claimant’s adult life. She received no remuneration but understood that she would inherit her stepfather’s property when he died. After her mother’s death and until . .
CitedWayling v Jones CA 2-Aug-1993
The plaintiff and defendant were in a homosexual relationship. The plaintiff worked for the defendant for nominal expenses against his repeated promise to leave the business to him in his will. A will was made to that effect, but the defendant sold . .
CitedTaylor v Dickens and Another ChD 24-Nov-1997
The court has no general equitable power to enforce a promise even though broken in unconscionable circumstances. . .

Cited by:
Appeal fromThorner v Major and others HL 25-Mar-2009
The deceased had made a will including a gift to the claimant, but had then revoked the will. The claimant asserted that an estoppel had been created in his favour over a farm, and that the defendant administrators of the promisor’s estate held it . .
CitedGill v Woodall and Others ChD 5-Oct-2009
The claimant challenged her late mother’s will which had left the entire estate to a charity. She asserted lack of knowledge and approval and coercion, and also an estoppel. The will included a note explaining that no gift had been made because she . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Wills and Probate, Trusts, Estoppel

Updated: 02 November 2021; Ref: scu.270582

Warren and Another v Burns: QBD 13 Nov 2014

The boxing manager and boxer each said that the other owed him money.
Held: The contract entitled the claimant to take some share of the boxers earnings but as part of the overall management fee, but as a part of the overall sum and at a share to be apprtioned between the managers. On the other hand the claimant had not waived payment by failing to call for payment in earlier years. In summary, unpaid comission remained payable, the balance of any payment for one particular fight was due from a company now in liquidation (not Mr Warren), but no sum was payable in respect of the promoter agreement.

Knowles CBE J
[2014] EWHC 3671 (QB)
Bailii
England and Wales
Citing:
CitedAllied Marine Ltd v Vale do Rio Doce SA (The Leonidas D) CA 1985
One party sought to construct an agreement to abandon an ongoing, if stalled, arbitration out of mere silence.
Held: Robert Goff LJ said that silence will not normally amount to acceptance of an offer since acceptance cannot be inferred from . .
CitedLiberty Insurance Pte Ltd and Another v Argo Systems Fze CA 21-Dec-2011
Aikens LJ said that the waiver of a contractual right by election or by estoppel requires ‘that the person who is alleged to have ‘waived’ the relevant contractual right has made an unequivocal representation, by words or conduct, that he does not, . .
CitedBehzadi v Shaftsbury Hotels CA 1992
The court must distinguish between an open contract such as Green v. Sevin where no date for completion is fixed by the contract and the more normal case where a completion date is fixed but time is not of the essence of the date specified. In the . .
CitedDalkia Utilities Services Plc v Celtech International Ltd ComC 27-Jan-2006
The Court was asked to decide (i) which, if either, of the two parties to a 15 year agreement lawfully terminated it; (ii) whether, if one of them did so, it was by giving notice under a contractual termination clause or by way of acceptance of the . .
CitedValilas v Januzaj CA 8-Apr-2014
The parties, dentist working together, disputed the contract between them.
Held: Floyd LJ described the assessment to be made when deciding if a contract had been breached: ‘Whether a breach or threatened breach does give rise to a right to . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Contract, Estoppel

Updated: 01 November 2021; Ref: scu.538724

Dillwyn v Llewelyn: ChD 12 Jul 1862

The father thought he had given his younger son land in Wales, in signing a memorandum and presenting it to him ‘for the purpose of furnishing himself with a dwelling-house’. The memorandum was not by deed. The son built his home on the land. When the father died, the elder son disputed his brother’s title.
Held: The Master of the Rolls said younger son was entitled to a life interest. Lord Westbury LC allowed the younger son’s appeal, saying: ‘About the rules of the Court there can be no controversy. A voluntary agreement will not be completed or assisted by a Court of Equity, in cases of mere gift. If anything be wanting to complete the title of the donee, a Court of Equity will not assist him in obtaining it; for a mere donee can have no right to claim more than he has received. But the subsequent acts of the donor may give the donee that right or ground of claim which he did not acquire from the original gift . . so if A puts B in possession of a piece of land, and tells him, ‘I give it to you that you may build a house on it,’ and B on the strength of that promise, with the knowledge of A, expends a large sum of money in building a house accordingly, I cannot doubt that the donee acquires a right from the subsequent transaction to call on the donor to perform that contract and complete the imperfect donation which was made. The case is somewhat analogous to that of verbal agreement not binding originally for the want of the memorandum in writing signed by the party to be charged, but which becomes binding by virtue of the subsequent part performance.’ The Lord Chancellor awarded the younger son the fee simple since ‘no one builds a house for his own life only.’

The Lord Chancellor Lord Westbury
[1862] EWHC Ch J67, [1862] 45 ER 1284, (1862) 4 De GF and J 517, [1862] EngR 908, (1862) 4 De G F and J 517, (1862) 45 ER 1285
Bailii, Commonlii
Cited by:
CitedYeoman’s Row Management Ltd and Another v Cobbe HL 30-Jul-2008
The parties agreed in principle for the sale of land with potential development value. Considerable sums were spent, and permission achieved, but the owner then sought to renegotiate the deal.
Held: The appeal succeeded in part. The finding . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Land, Equity, Estoppel

Leading Case

Updated: 01 November 2021; Ref: scu.245427

Lissenden v CAV Bosch Ltd: HL 1940

The defendant attempted to bar the workman plaintiff from appealing a compensation award on the ground that he had already accepted payment under it.
Held: The House considered the principle that a party may not blow hot and cold on an issue in the same pleadings. However, the doctrine did not prevent a party from receiving benefits under an award and seeking to appeal the award to obtain greater benefits.
Lord Atkin said: ‘In this country, I do not think it expresses any formal legal concept. I regard it as a descriptive phrase equivalent to, ‘Blowing hot and cold’. I find great difficulty in placing such phrases in any legal category, though they may be applied correctly in defining what is meant by election, whether at common law or in equity. In cases where the doctrine does apply, the person concerned has the choice of two rights, either of which he is at liberty to adopt but not both. Where the doctrine does apply, if the person to whom the choice belongs irrecoverably and with knowledge adopts the one, he cannot afterwards assert the other. Election between the liability of principal and agent is perhaps the most usual instance in common law.’
He discussed legal maxims: ‘Indeed these general formulae are found in experience often to distract the Court’s mind from the actual exigencies of the case, and to induce the Court to quote them as offering a ready made solution. But it is not safe to act upon them unless and to the extent that they have received definition and limitation from judicial determination.’
Viscount Maugham explained the term ‘approbation and reprobation’ as a Scottish equivalent of the English equitable doctrine of election, though it had nothing to do with the common law principle of election as it applies for example to the pursuit of alternative remedies in a court of justice.
Lord Wright approved the dictum of Lord Escher MR and continued: ‘Indeed these general formulae are found in experience often to distract the Court’s mind from the actual exigencies of the case, and to induce the Court to quote them as offering a ready made solution. But it is not safe to act upon them unless and to the extent that they have received definition and limitation from judicial determination.’

Viscount Maugham, Lord Atkin, Lord Wright
[1940] AC 412, [1940] 1 All ER 405
England and Wales
Citing:
CitedYarmouth v France CA 11-Aug-1887
The plaintiff was employed by the defendant to drive carts. He objected that the horse had a vicious nature, but was obliged to drive it in any event. The horse kicked him.
Held: For the purposes of the 1880 Act, the plaintiff was an employee, . .

Cited by:
CitedOliver Ashworth (Holdings) Limited v Ballard (Kent) Limited CA 18-Mar-1999
In order for the landlord to claim double rent where a tenant held over unlawfully after the tenancy was determined, the landlord must not do anything to indicate that the lease might be continuing, for example by denying the validity of break . .
CitedMcLaughlin and Others v Newall QBD 31-Jul-2009
The claimant asked the court to strike out the defence that the claimant had compromised his claim by agreement. The defendant had written letters critical of the claimants who were governors of a school which had disciplined his daughter a teacher . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Estoppel, Scotland, Equity

Leading Case

Updated: 01 November 2021; Ref: scu.188158

Anderson Antiques (UK) Ltd v Anderson Wharf (Hull) Ltd and Another: ChD 23 May 2007

anderson_andersonChD2008

The claimants owned land against which they said, the defendant had wrongfully registered notices. They sought removal of the notices, damages, and an injunction to prevent further notices being registered. The first defendant asserted an oral agreement for the purchase of the site. The claimant sought a strike out of the defence.
Held: The balance between the doctrine of proprietary estoppel and section 2 of the 1989 Act is not yet clear. The court doubted that the defendant would be able to establish an estoppel to get around the Act. The evidence that the defendant believed that a contract had been created was not credible having istelf taken part in the tendering process which stood in place of the agreement it now asserted. The defence was struck out.

Briggs J
[2007] EWHC 2086 (Ch)
Bailii
Land Registration Act 2002 77, Law of Property (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1989 2
Citing:
CitedYaxley v Gotts and Another CA 24-Jun-1999
Oral Agreement Creating Proprietory Estoppel
The defendant offered to give to the Plaintiff, a builder, the ground floor of a property in return for converting the house, and then managing it. They were friends, and the oral offer was accepted. The property was then actually bought in the name . .
CitedYeoman’s Row Management Ltd and Another v Cobbe CA 31-Jul-2006
The defendants orally agreed to sell the claimant a block of flats for andpound;12 million if he first obtained planning permission for it on terms as to a sharing of subsequent development profits. The claimant spent over andpound;100,000 and . .
CitedMCA Records Inc and Another v Charly Records Ltd and others (No 5) CA 5-Oct-2001
The court discussed the personal liability of a director for torts committed by his company: ‘i) a director will not be treated as liable with the company as a joint tortfeasor if he does no more than carry out his constitutional role in the . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Registered Land, Contract, Estoppel

Updated: 01 November 2021; Ref: scu.262175

Hughes v Metropolitan Railway Co: HL 1877

A notice to repair had been served by the landlord on the tenant. The tenant wrote offering to buy the premises and proposed deferring the commencement of repairs until the landlord responded. The landlord replied by letter asking the price. It was held that those letters had the effect of suspending the notice. The tenant’s letter was ‘a definite intimation . . that they would not proceed to execute the repairs . . if they found that there was a possibility of an agreement to purchase being come to.’ Of the courses open to the landlord, he had taken the course that he said to the tenant ‘I will adopt what you propose and enter upon a negotiation.’
More generally: (Cairns LC) ‘It is the first principle upon which all courts of equity proceed, that if parties who have entered into a definite and distinct terms involving certain legal results, certain penalties or legal forfeiture, afterwards by their own act or with their own consent enter upon a course of negotiation which has the effect of leading one of the parties to suppose that the strict rights arising under the contract will not be enforced, or will be kept in suspense or held in abeyance, the person who otherwise might have enforced those rights will not be allowed to enforce them where it would be inequitable having regard to the dealings which have taken place between the parties’ (Lord O’Hagan) ‘If there was real misleading and bona fide mistake, it does not matter that the Plaintiff acted honestly and without indirect purpose of any kind.’

Cairns LC, Lord O’Hagan
[1877] 2 App Cas 439, [1877] 46 LJQB 583, [1877] UKHL 1
Bailii
England and Wales
Cited by:
AppliedAce Insurance Sa-Nv v Surendranath Seechurn CA 6-Feb-2002
The claimant sought payment under an insurance policy for his permanent disability. The judge had found that the defendant insurers had indicated a readiness to continue negotiations beyond the limitation period, and that they would apply for a stay . .
AppliedCentral London Property Trust Ltd v High Trees House Ltd KBD 1947
Promissory Estoppel Created
The plaintiff leased a block a flats to the defendant in 1939, at an annual rental of pounds 2500. High Trees had difficulty in filling the flats because of the war, and the parties agreed in writing in 1940 to reduce the rental to a half. No time . .
CitedDun and Bradstreet Software Services (England) Ltd; Dun and Bradstreet Software Services Ltd v Provident Mutual Life Assurance Association and General Accident Linked Life Assurance CA 9-Jun-1997
Break clauses had been exercised on behalf of the plaintiffs. The defendant landlords appealed a decision upholding the notices. A penalty rent had been sought.
Held: There had been no sufficient agency established to validate the notice. The . .
CitedTool Metal Manufactuing Company Ltd v Tungsten Electric Company Ltd HL 16-Jun-1955
The principle in Hughes v Metropolitan Railway could apply to a reduction by concession in payments due to a creditor and a concession could be terminated by giving reasonable notice. . .
CitedCollier v P and M J Wright (Holdings) Ltd CA 14-Dec-2007
Agreement for payment by joint debtor not contract
The claimant appealed against refusal of an order to set aside a statutory demand. He said that he had compromised a claim by the creditors. He argued for an extension to the Rule in Pinnel’s case, so that where a debtor agrees to pay part of a . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Estoppel, Landlord and Tenant

Leading Case

Updated: 01 November 2021; Ref: scu.183472

Gillett v Holt and Another: CA 23 Mar 2000

Repeated Assurances Created Equitable Estoppel

Repeated assurances, given over years, that the claimant would acquire an interest in property on the death of the person giving the re-assurance, and upon which the claimant relied to his detriment, could found a claim of equitable estoppel. The need for some detriment was clear. There was no need to show some additional act of the promissor which would make the promise irrevocable. It was the act of the claimant, in relying upon the promise, which would make it unconscionable for the promissor to be released from his promise. ‘But although the judgment is, for convenience, divided into several sections with headings which give a rough indication of the subject matter, it is important to note at the outset that the doctrine of proprietary estoppel cannot be treated as subdivided into three or four watertight compartments. Both sides are agreed on that, and in the course of the oral argument in this court it repeatedly became apparent that the quality of the relevant assurances may influence the issue of reliance, that reliance and detriment are often intertwined, and that whether there is a distinct need for a ‘mutual understanding’ may depend on how the other elements are formulated and understood. Moreover the fundamental principle that equity is concerned to prevent unconscionable conduct permeates all the elements of the doctrine. In the end the court must look at the matter in the round.’

Lord Justice Beldam, Lord Justice Waller and Lord Justice Robert Walker
Times 17-Mar-2000, Gazette 23-Mar-2000, [2000] EWCA Civ 66, [2001] Ch 210, [2000] 2 All ER 289, [2000] 2 WTLR 195, [2000] Fam Law 714, [2000] 1 FCR 705, [2000] 3 WLR 815, [2000] 2 FLR 266
Bailii
England and Wales
Citing:
Appeal fromGillett v Holt and Another ChD 18-Jun-1998
To establish a proprietary estoppel against the testator’s promise to leave items in his will, some overt act over and above a promise, and reliance upon that promise, must be shown in order to displace the testator’s right to change his will. . .
CitedWillis and Son v Willis CA 1986
The appellants had resisted giving a flat, claiming a promissory estoppel based on the respondents having more than once said that the appellants could live in the premises rent free for as long as they needed. The appellants said that some pounds . .
CitedIn re Basham dec’d; Basham v Basham 1986
The claimant and her husband had helped her mother and her stepfather throughout the claimant’s adult life. She received no remuneration but understood that she would inherit her stepfather’s property when he died. After her mother’s death and until . .
CitedInwards v Baker CA 13-Jan-1965
An indulgent father had encouraged his son to build a bungalow on his, the father’s, land. The son had done so in the expectation, encouraged by the father, that he would be permitted to remain in occupation.
Held: The court formulated the . .
CitedGreasley v Cooke 1980
For a proprietary estoppel to arise the plaintiff must have incurred expenditure or otherwise have prejudiced himself or acted to his detriment. However, once it has been established that promises were made, and that there has been conduct by the . .
ApprovedTaylors Fashions Ltd v Liverpool Victoria Trustees Co Ltd ChD 1981
The fundamental principle that equity is concerned to prevent unconscionable conduct permeates all the elements of the doctrine of estoppel. In the light of the more recent cases, the principle ‘requires a very much broader approach which is . .

Cited by:
CitedJennings v Rice, Wilson, Marsh, Norris, Norris, and Reed CA 22-Feb-2002
The claimant asserted a proprietary estoppel against the respondents. He had worked for the deceased over many years, for little payment, and doing more and more for her. Though he still worked full time at first, he came to spend nights at the . .
CitedParker v Parker ChD 24-Jul-2003
Lord Macclesfield claimed a right to occupy a castle. The owners claimed that he had only a mere tenancy at will. The exact rooms in the castle which had been occupied had varied over time.
Held: The applicant was entitled to reasonable . .
CitedGonthier and Another v Orange Contract Scaffolding Ltd CA 25-Jun-2003
The question of a proprietary estoppel as between landlord and tenant arose. An agreement had been reached subject to contract for the grant of a lease, with an option to purchase. The tenant was allowed into possession before the documentation was . .
CitedGrundy v Ottey CA 31-Jul-2003
The deceased left his estate within a discretionary trust. The claimant sought to assert an interest in it, claiming an estoppel and, under the 1975 Act, as his partner. They had lived together for four years. She had been dependent upon him . .
CitedThorner v Curtis and others ChD 26-Oct-2007
The claimant said that the deceased, his father and a farmer, had made representations to him over many years that if the claimant continued to work on the farm, he would leave the farm to him in his will. He died intestate. He claimed a proprietary . .
CitedWormall v Wormall CA 25-Nov-2004
The father had allowed his daughter to run her business from the family farm. The mother and father came to divorce, and the father required vacanat possession of the farm so that he could sell it to satisfy his liabilities in the ancillary relief . .
CitedErnst Kastner v Marc Jason, Davis Sherman, Brigitte Sherman CA 2-Dec-2004
The parties had agreed that their dispute should be resolved before the Jewish Beth Din according to Jewish substantive and procedural law. K was granted an interim freezing order. The defendant sold the asset, and K sought to assert a charge.
CitedCobbe v Yeomans Row Management Ltd and Others ChD 25-Feb-2005
Principles for Proprietary Estoppel
A developer claimed to have agreed that upon obtaining necessary planning permissions for land belonging to the respondents, he would purchase the land at a price reflecting its new value. The defendant denied that any legally enforceable agreement . .
CitedCentury SA (UK) Ltd v Clibbery and Another CA 17-Jul-2003
The major shareholder in the claimant company allowed the defendant and her mother to occupy a substantial house owned by the company. When possession was sought, the defendant argued that it had been promised to her that she could live there for as . .
CitedCadbury Schweppes Plc and Another v Halifax Share Dealing Ltd and Another ChD 23-May-2006
Fraudsters had successfully contrived to sell shares of others, by re-registering the shares to new addresses and requesting new certificates. The question was which of the company, the company registrars and the stockbrokers should bear the loss. . .
CitedBeale v Harvey CA 28-Nov-2003
Land had been divided into three lots on its development, but the site plan did not match the line of a fence actually erected.
Held: The court was not bound by the Watcham case, and would not follow it to allow reference to the later . .
CitedHunt v Soady CA 26-Apr-2007
The parties lived together and held the property as beneficial joint tenants. After the split up and the claimant let the house, she sought an order for its sale, and the appellant defendant sought an order that he should take the equity in the . .
CitedSainsbury’s Supermarkets Ltd v Olympia Homes Limited, Hughes etc ChD 17-Jun-2005
The claimant sought rectification of the land register. In a development deal, an option agreement had not been registered, and the land sold on. The land was required to allow the building of a roundabout necessary for the intended store. An . .
CitedTackaberry and Another v Hollis and others ChD 13-Nov-2007
A house had been purchased in 1982 by one member of a large family. Other family members now disputed whether the land was held in trust for them. A constructive trust was asserted.
Held: The claimants had failed to establish that a . .
CitedPowell and Another v Benney CA 5-Dec-2007
The claimants asserted an interest under a constructive trust in land held by the defendant.
Held: The judge had found acts of detriment suffered by the claimants. Though elements of the judgment might be criticised, the appeal failed. . .
CitedBrooker and Another v Fisher CA 4-Apr-2008
The claimant had asserted a joint authorship of the song ‘A Whiter Shade of Pale’ written in the sixties. The defendant appealed saying that the claim had been brought too late, and that the finding ignored practice in the music industry. The . .
CitedHodgens v Beckingham CA 19-Feb-2003
The defendant appealed a finding of infringement in a music copyright work, ‘Young at Heart’, based on a claim of joint authorship. The claimant had delayed his claim for many years, but now sought only rights to future royalties.
Held: The . .
CitedLondon Borough of Bexley v Maison Maurice Ltd ChD 15-Dec-2006
The council had taken land by compulsory purchase in order to construct a dual carriageway. It then claimed that it had left undedicated a strip .5 metre wide as a ransom strip to prevent the defendant restoring access to the road.
Held: The . .
CitedYeoman’s Row Management Ltd and Another v Cobbe HL 30-Jul-2008
The parties agreed in principle for the sale of land with potential development value. Considerable sums were spent, and permission achieved, but the owner then sought to renegotiate the deal.
Held: The appeal succeeded in part. The finding . .
CitedSQ v RQ and Another FD 31-Jul-2008
The home in which the family had lived was held in the name of a brother. Each party claimed that it was held in trust for them. Chancery proceedings had been consolidated into these ancillary relief applications. The home had been in the husband’s . .
CitedThorner v Major and others CA 2-Jul-2008
The deceased had written a will, revoked it but then not made another. The claimant had worked for the deceased understanding that property would be left to him, and now claimed that the estate property was held under a trust for him.
Held: . .
CitedFisher v Brooker and Others HL 30-Jul-2009
The claimant sought a share in the royalties from the song ‘A whiter shade of pale’ but had delayed his claim for 38 years. He had contributed the organ solo which had contributed significantly to the song’s success. He now sought a share of future . .
CitedThorner v Major and others HL 25-Mar-2009
The deceased had made a will including a gift to the claimant, but had then revoked the will. The claimant asserted that an estoppel had been created in his favour over a farm, and that the defendant administrators of the promisor’s estate held it . .
CitedGill v Woodall and Others ChD 5-Oct-2009
The claimant challenged her late mother’s will which had left the entire estate to a charity. She asserted lack of knowledge and approval and coercion, and also an estoppel. The will included a note explaining that no gift had been made because she . .
CitedNugent v Nugent ChD 20-Dec-2013
The court was asked whether the court has, following the the 2002 Act, an inherent power to order the cancellation of a unilateral notice registered against a title registered under the 2002 Act and, if so, in what circumstances, and how, such a . .
CitedRawlings v Chapman and Others ChD 3-Nov-2015
In 1992 the claimant paid substantial amounts of money towards the cost of building and fitting out a new house on farmland owned by the deceased, Mr. Hopkins, at Aggs Hill, Cheltenham. She alleged that she did so in reliance on promises, frequently . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Estoppel, Equity

Leading Case

Updated: 01 November 2021; Ref: scu.80832

Meyers v Casey: 13 Oct 1913

(High Court of Australia) The Court considered a decision of the committee of the Victoria Racing Club. Isaac J said of objections considered by the committee: ‘They are, by reason of the committee’s decision, res judicatae, as much as if instead of the committee it had been the Supreme Court unappealed from, that has so held. That rests on the well known rule that a competent court or other tribunal has jurisdiction to give a wrong judgment, and if there is no appeal in the strict sense, then its decision, whether right or wrong, must stand, and cannot be questioned in any subsequent proceedings elsewhere.’

Barton ACJ, Isaacs, Powers and Rich JJ
[1913] HCA 50, (1913) 17 CLR 90
Austlii
Australia
Cited by:
CitedCoke-Wallis, Regina (on The Application of) v Institute of Chartered Accountants In England and Wales SC 19-Jan-2011
The appellant chartered accountant had been convicted in Jersey after removing documents from his offices relating to a disputed trust and in breach of an order from his professional institute. The court now considered the relevance and application . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Estoppel

Leading Case

Updated: 01 November 2021; Ref: scu.428358

Matalan Retail Ltd v Revenue and Customs: ChD 5 Aug 2009

The taxpayer imported swimwear for sale. The respondent had incorrectly indicated that such swimwear had one classification. The claimant sought to prevent the respondent reclassifying the goods, saying that they had made given binding tariff information. It depended on the proportion of rubber in the suits. The respondent viewed the calculation differently.
Held: the commissioners were not prevented by estoppel or abuse from retaining the monetary difference between the correct higher rates paid and the sums which would have been due under the original lower classification.
The Binding Tariff Information system could only apply to goods of the precise description applied. It could not apply to different but similar lines: ‘A Regulation is legislative in character and of general application. A BTI is specific to an individual and can only be relied upon by the holder in respect of goods corresponding in every respect with those described in it. Regulation 651/2007 does not contain the limiting provisions as to its application specified by the Code in respect of BTIs.’ A tribunal’s decision on a rate of tax for one year is not binding for subsequent years, but where a court has settled an issue of fact as between parties, they are estopped from later arguing inconsistently. A tribunal determining a rate of applicable tax is not so bound.

Christopher Clarke J
[2009] EWHC 2046 (Ch), Times 21-Oct-2009, [2010] Bus LR D25, [2009] STC 2638
Bailii
Council Regulation 2913/92
England and Wales
Citing:
CitedVtech Electronics (UK) Plc v The Commissioners of Customs and Excise ChD 29-Jan-2003
. .
CitedKrings GmbH v Oberfinanzdirektion Nurnberg ECJ 4-Mar-2004
Europa Common Customs Tariff – Combined Nomenclature – Tariff heading – Preparation with a basis of extract of tea. . .
CitedCaffoor v Columbo Income Tax Commissioner PC 1961
Taxation and rating decisions are sui generis. Lord Radcliffe said: ‘The critical thing is that the dispute which alone can be determined by any decision given in the course of these proceedings is limited to one subject only, the amount of the . .
CitedBroken Hill Pty Co Ltd v Broken Hill Municipal Council PC 10-Nov-1925
A decision of the High Court of Australia on the construction of a section of a statute dealing with rating value did not estop the parties from relitigating the issue on a subsequent year’s assessment. . .
CitedSociety of Medical Officers of Health v Hope HL 1960
A local valuation court had decided in 1951 that the Society’s land was exempt from rates under section 1 of the 1843 Act. The exemption was conditional on certain facts relating to the Society and its purpose in occupying the building. In 1956 the . .
CitedCommissioners of Customs and Excise v DFS Furniture Company Plc CA 6-Dec-2002
. .
CitedSpecialist Group International Ltd v Deakin and Another CA 23-May-2001
Law upon res judicata – action estoppel and issue estoppel and the underlying policy interest whereby there is finality in litigation and litigants are not vexed twice on the same matter.
(May LJ) ‘the authorities taken as a whole tend to . .
CitedHoysted v Federal Taxation Commissioner PC 1926
An implied decision of the High Court on the true construction of a will estopped the parties from contending for a different construction relating to a later year’s assessment. . .
CitedJohnson v Gore Wood and Co HL 14-Dec-2000
Shareholder May Sue for Additional Personal Losses
A company brought a claim of negligence against its solicitors, and, after that claim was settled, the company’s owner brought a separate claim in respect of the same subject-matter.
Held: It need not be an abuse of the court for a shareholder . .
CitedIn re Vandervell’s Trusts (No 1); Vandervell Trustees Limited v White and Others HL 15-Jul-1970
Practice – Parties – Joinder – Proceedings between subjects raising issues material to income tax – Joinder of Commissioners of Inland Revenue – Income Tax Act 1952 (15 and 16 Geo. 6 and 1 Eliz. 2, c.10), ss. 52 and 64 ; Income Tax Management Act . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Customs and Excise, Taxes Management, Estoppel, European

Updated: 01 November 2021; Ref: scu.371884

Yeoman’s Row Management Ltd and Another v Cobbe: HL 30 Jul 2008

The parties agreed in principle for the sale of land with potential development value. Considerable sums were spent, and permission achieved, but the owner then sought to renegotiate the deal.
Held: The appeal succeeded in part. The finding that Mrs Lisle-Mainwaring’s behaviour in repudiating, and seeking an improvement on, the core financial terms of the second agreement was unconscionable and sufficient to justify the creation of a ‘proprietary estoppel equity’. . But to leap from there to a conclusion that a proprietary estoppel case was made out was not justified.
Even without attempting to vary the terms of the agreement, the company could not have been obliged to go ahead: ‘Proprietary estoppel requires, in my opinion, clarity as to what it is that the object of the estoppel is to be estopped from denying, or asserting, and clarity as to the interest in the property in question that that denial, or assertion, would otherwise defeat. If these requirements are not recognised, proprietary estoppel will lose contact with its roots and risk becoming unprincipled and therefore unpredictable, if it has not already become so. ‘ The claimant was entitled to a quantum meruit payment for his services, and te value of that should represent the extent of the unjust enrichment obtained by the plaintiff.

Lord Hoffmann, Lord Scott of Foscote, Lord Walker of Gestingthorpe, Lord Brown of Eaton-under-Heywood, Lord Mance
[2008] UKHL 55, [2008] 35 EG 142, [2008] 31 EG 88, [2008] WTLR 1461, [2008] 1 WLR 1752
Bailii, Times, HL
Law of Property (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 19892
England and Wales
Citing:
Appeal fromYeoman’s Row Management Ltd and Another v Cobbe CA 31-Jul-2006
The defendants orally agreed to sell the claimant a block of flats for andpound;12 million if he first obtained planning permission for it on terms as to a sharing of subsequent development profits. The claimant spent over andpound;100,000 and . .
At First InstanceYeoman’s Row Management Ltd v London Rent Assessment Committee Chairman QBD 25-Feb-2005
The parties agreed in principle that there would be an application for planning permission, and that if granted the land would be bought and the profits shared. Considerable work was undertaken and permission achieved, but the seller then sought to . .
CitedLaird v Birkenhead Railway Co 22-Nov-1859
The plaintiff applied to the defendant railway company for permission to construct and use a private branch line connecting with the railway company’s main line. Agreement was reached for the plaintiff to do so ‘on reasonable terms, which were to be . .
CitedAttorney General of Hong Kong v Humphreys Estate (Queen’s Gardens) Ltd PC 1987
An agreement in principle was marked ‘subject to contract’. The Government would acquire some flats owned the plaintiff Group of companies in return for the Government granting, inter alia, a lease to the Group of some Crown lands. The Government . .
CitedMuschinski v Dodds 1985
(High Court of Australia) The idea of conscience is too vague a notion to found the principles of equity, it would open the door to ‘idiosyncratic notions of fairness and justice’ and ‘That property was acquired, in pursuance of the consensual . .
CitedTaylors Fashions Ltd v Liverpool Victoria Trustees Co Ltd ChD 1981
The fundamental principle that equity is concerned to prevent unconscionable conduct permeates all the elements of the doctrine of estoppel. In the light of the more recent cases, the principle ‘requires a very much broader approach which is . .
CitedRamsden v Dyson HL 1866
The Vice-Chancellor had held that two tenants of Sir John Ramsden, the owner of a large estate near Huddersfield, were entitled to long leases of plots on the estate. They ostensibly held the plots as tenants at will only, but they had spent their . .
CitedPlimmer v Mayor, Councillors and Citizens of the City of Wellington PC 1884
(New Zealand) Mr Plimmer had occupied land under a revocable licence from the Corporation’s predecessor-in-title and at their request had made extensive improvements to it. He sought compensation when the land was to be vested in the defendant. The . .
CitedInwards v Baker CA 13-Jan-1965
An indulgent father had encouraged his son to build a bungalow on his, the father’s, land. The son had done so in the expectation, encouraged by the father, that he would be permitted to remain in occupation.
Held: The court formulated the . .
CitedHoliday Inns Inc v Broadhead 1974
The parties negotiated for a lease, but never signed a contract. The plaintiff expended considerable sums to try to get planning, and once acquired it sought to buy the land, and claimed that Mr Broadhead had taken an unconscionable advantage, . .
CitedCrabb v Arun District Council CA 23-Jul-1975
The plaintiff was led to believe that he would acquire a right of access to his land. In reliance on that belief he sold off part of his land, leaving the remainder landlocked.
Held: His claim to have raised an equity was upheld. The plaintiff . .
CitedBritish Steel Corporation v Cleveland Bridge and Engineering Co Ltd 1983
An ‘if contract’ is where one party makes an offer capable of acceptance on the basis that ‘if you do this for us, we will do that for you’. Often used in the construction industry.
Goff J said: ‘the question whether . . any contract has come . .
CitedPallant v Morgan ChD 1952
The agents of two neighbouring landowners orally agreed in the auction room that the plaintiff’s agent would refrain from bidding at auction and that the defendant, if his agent’s bid was successful, would divide the land according to an agreed . .
CitedTime Products Ltd v Combined English Stores 2-Dec-1974
The plaintiff and the defendant were each interested in buying a property and had agreed that one of them would make an offer, the other refraining from doing so, and that if the offer were to be accepted the purchaser would deal with the property . .
CitedWalton Stores (Interstate) Limited v Maher 1988
(High Court of Australia) It would be unconscionable for a party to stand by in silence when it must have known that the other party was proceeding on an assumption that they had a binding agreement. . .
CitedPridean Limited v Forest Taverns Limited; Hipwell and Marshall CA 28-Nov-1996
The claimant owned a public house. It set out with the defendant to to acquire the premises or to take a lease of them. The defendant went into occupation, and carried out works. Negotiations continued, but broke down over the form of protection to . .
CitedLondon and Regional Investments Ltd v TBI Plc and Others CA 22-Mar-2002
TBI was a property investor and developer with several subsidiaries. It agreed to sell some to London and Regional. The agreement provided for the vendor and the purchaser to use reasonable endeavours to agree the terms of a joint venture agreement . .
CitedBanner Homes Group Plc v Luff Developments and Another CA 10-Feb-2000
Competing building companies agreed not to bid against each other for the purchase of land. One proceeded and the other asserted that the land was then held on trust for the two parties as a joint venture.
Held: Although there was no formal . .
CitedKilcarne Holdings Ltd v Targetfollow (Birmingham) Ltd and Another CA 16-Nov-2005
The defendant had brought in the claimant in order to assist in satisfying its own obligations under a lease. The joint venture was not recorded in a formal agreement. The appellant asserted that a constructive trust had been created. The judge had . .
CitedDann v Spurrier 1802
The tenant had carried out improvements to the property. It was uncertain whether the length of the term (7, 14 or 21 years) was at the option of the lessee alone.
Held: The case was decided on construction of the lease. Lord Eldon made it . .
CitedRochdale Canal Company v King 1853
Sir John Romilly MR said: ‘The principle on which the Defendants rely is one often recognised by this Court, namely, that if one man stand by and encourage another, though but passively, to lay out money, under an erroneous opinion of title, or . .
CitedDillwyn v Llewelyn ChD 12-Jul-1862
The father thought he had given his younger son land in Wales, in signing a memorandum and presenting it to him ‘for the purpose of furnishing himself with a dwelling-house’. The memorandum was not by deed. The son built his home on the land. When . .
CitedRegina (Reprotech (Pebsham) Ltd) v East Sussex County Council Reprotech (Pebsham) Ltd v Same HL 28-Feb-2002
The respondent company had asserted that the local authority had made a determination of the issue of whether electricity could be generated on a waste treatment site without further planning permission. The council said that without a formal . .
CitedWillmott v Barber ChD 19-Jun-1880
In 1869 Barber granted a 99-year lease of three acres of land in east London, subject to a covenant against assignment or sub-letting without consent. In 1874, in breach of covenant, he sub-let one acre on an annual tenancy to Willmott (who owned a . .
CitedPascoe v Turner CA 1-Dec-1978
The defendant had been assured by the plaintiff that ‘the house is yours and everything in it.’ In reliance on that assurance she carried out improvements to the house. Although the improvements were modest, their cost represented a large part of . .
CitedGrundy v Ottey CA 31-Jul-2003
The deceased left his estate within a discretionary trust. The claimant sought to assert an interest in it, claiming an estoppel and, under the 1975 Act, as his partner. They had lived together for four years. She had been dependent upon him . .
CitedLissimore v Downing ChD 31-Mar-2003
The claimant asserted an estoppel in land registered in the name of the defendant.
Held: Unspecific statements made by the defendant that ‘she would never want for anything’, or that ‘he would take care of her’, or that ‘he had looked after . .
CitedWindeler v Whitehall 1990
The plaintiff and defendant lived together but were not married. The plaintiff spent some of a legacy she received on living expenses and supervised minor building works to the family home. She claimed an interest in it.
Held: Millett J said: . .
CitedJennings v Rice, Wilson, Marsh, Norris, Norris, and Reed CA 22-Feb-2002
The claimant asserted a proprietary estoppel against the respondents. He had worked for the deceased over many years, for little payment, and doing more and more for her. Though he still worked full time at first, he came to spend nights at the . .
CitedGillett v Holt and Another ChD 18-Jun-1998
To establish a proprietary estoppel against the testator’s promise to leave items in his will, some overt act over and above a promise, and reliance upon that promise, must be shown in order to displace the testator’s right to change his will. . .
CitedGillett v Holt and Another CA 23-Mar-2000
Repeated Assurances Created Equitable Estoppel
Repeated assurances, given over years, that the claimant would acquire an interest in property on the death of the person giving the re-assurance, and upon which the claimant relied to his detriment, could found a claim of equitable estoppel. The . .
CitedJT Developments v Quinn and Another CA 1990
The plaintiff told the defendant it was willing to grant a lease on the same terms as those contained in a new tenancy that the plaintiff had recently granted to the tenant of a nearby shop, also owned by the plaintiff. The defendant carried out . .
CitedBank of Credit and Commerce International (Overseas) Ltd and Another v Akindele CA 22-Jun-2000
The test of whether a person who received funds held them on constructive trust, was not whether he himself was dishonest, but rather whether he had knowledge of circumstances which made it unconscionable to hold on to the money received. In respect . .

Cited by:
CitedBrightlingsea Haven Ltd and Another v Morris and others QBD 30-Oct-2008
The caravan park operated under planning consents requiring the caravans to be occupied only during certain months. The defendants had bought their mobile homes from the claimants to occupy full time, and said that the claimants knew of this. The . .
CitedSt Pancras and Humanist Housing Association Ltd v Leonard CA 17-Dec-2008
The claimant sought possession of a garage. The defendant claimed adverse possession.
Held: The defendant’s appeal against an order for possession failed. The defendant had attended a meeting where his behaviour had allowed other parties to . .
CitedBrighton and Hove City Council v Audus ChD 26-Feb-2009
The claimant was the proprietor of a fourth legal charge on a title. It sought a declaration that a second charge in favour of the defendant was void as a clog on the proprietor’s equity of redemption. An advance secured by a first charge, also in . .
CitedClarke and Another v Corless and Another ChD 8-Jul-2009
The parties disputed whether one could retain for his own benefit land on an estate reserved for an estate road. A trust was claimed under Pallant saying that the parties had made an informal agreement before the property was purchased.
Held: . .
CitedThorner v Major and others HL 25-Mar-2009
The deceased had made a will including a gift to the claimant, but had then revoked the will. The claimant asserted that an estoppel had been created in his favour over a farm, and that the defendant administrators of the promisor’s estate held it . .
CitedClarke and Another v Corless and Another CA 31-Mar-2010
The claimants appealed against refusal of a declaration that a neighbouring access road and land was held on a constructive trust. They said that an agreement bewteeen the parties should have been effective to impose a trust on the defendants. The . .
CitedGill v Woodall and Others ChD 5-Oct-2009
The claimant challenged her late mother’s will which had left the entire estate to a charity. She asserted lack of knowledge and approval and coercion, and also an estoppel. The will included a note explaining that no gift had been made because she . .
CitedBenedetti v Sawiris and Others SC 17-Jul-2013
The claimant appealed against reduction of the sum awarded on his claim for a quantum meruit after helping to facilitate a very substantial business deal for the defendants.
Held: The correct approach to the amount to be paid by way of a . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Contract, Land, Estoppel

Leading Case

Updated: 31 October 2021; Ref: scu.271281

Thorner v Major and others: HL 25 Mar 2009

The deceased had made a will including a gift to the claimant, but had then revoked the will. The claimant asserted that an estoppel had been created in his favour over a farm, and that the defendant administrators of the promisor’s estate held it under bare trust for him.
Held: The claimant’s appeal succeeded. A proprietary estoppel might be established by acts falling short of an explicit promise, provided that they were otherwise sufficiently clear. A small change in the property need not necessarily destroy such a trust provided the property remained essentially identifiable. In summary: ‘a. An assurance may be sufficient to found an estoppel even if it is not made expressly; it can be made in oblique and allusive terms; it may be subject to unspoken and ill defined qualifications;
b. Of importance is whether the encouragement given was ‘clear enough’ for the person to whom the assurance was made to form a reasonable view that he was being given an assurance that he would inherit the relevant property ;
c. This is an issue of fact heavily dependent upon the context in which the assurance or assurances was or were made (including the characteristics of the protagonists, the relationship between them and whether assurances were repeated and formed part of a pattern) on which evidence to the parties’ subjective understanding of what they were agreeing is admissible;
d. It is unnecessary for the person giving the assurance to know the Claimant was thinking of alternative courses of action at the time the assurances were given; it is also unnecessary for there to have been a dramatic announcement in front of assembled witnesses or a ‘signature event’.’
Lord Neuberger said: ‘It should be emphasised that I am not seeking to cast doubt on the proposition, heavily relied upon by the Court of Appeal, that there must be some sort of an assurance which is ‘clear and unequivocal before it can be relied upon to find an estoppel. However, that proposition must be read as subject to three qualifications. First, it does not detract from the normal principle so well articulated in this case by Lord Walker that the effect of words or actions must be assessed in their context. Just as a sentence can have one meaning in one context and a very different meaning in another context so can a sentence, which will be ambiguous and unclear in one context, be a clear and unambiguous assurance in another context . . Secondly, it would be quite wrong to be unrealistically rigorous when applying the ‘clear and unambiguous’ test. The Court should not search for ambiguity or uncertainty, but should assess the question of clarity and certainty practically and sensibly, as well as contextually . . Thirdly — there may be cases where the statement relied on to find an estoppel could amount to an assurance which could reasonably be understood as having more than one possible meaning. In such a case, if the facts otherwise satisfy all the requirements of an estoppel, it seems to me that, at least normally, the ambiguity should not deprive a person who reasonably relied on the assurance of all relief; it may well be right, however, that he should be accorded relief on the basis of the interpretation least beneficial to him’.
Lord Walker discussed the clarity necessary to found an estoppel: ‘I would prefer to say (while conscious that it is a thoroughly question-begging formulation) that to establish a proprietary estoppel the relevant assurance must be clear enough. What amounts to sufficient clarity, in a case of this sort, is hugely dependent on context.’

Lord Hoffmann, Lord Scott of Foscote, Lord Rodger of Earlsferry, Lord Walker of Gestingthorpe, Lord Neuberger
[2009] UKHL 18, [2009] 13 EG 142, [2009] WTLR 71, [2009] Fam Law 583, [2009] 2 FLR 405, [2009] 1 WLR 776
Bailii, Times, HL
England and Wales
Citing:
At First InstanceThorner v Curtis and others ChD 26-Oct-2007
The claimant said that the deceased, his father and a farmer, had made representations to him over many years that if the claimant continued to work on the farm, he would leave the farm to him in his will. He died intestate. He claimed a proprietary . .
Appeal fromThorner v Major and others CA 2-Jul-2008
The deceased had written a will, revoked it but then not made another. The claimant had worked for the deceased understanding that property would be left to him, and now claimed that the estate property was held under a trust for him.
Held: . .
CitedRamsden v Dyson HL 1866
The Vice-Chancellor had held that two tenants of Sir John Ramsden, the owner of a large estate near Huddersfield, were entitled to long leases of plots on the estate. They ostensibly held the plots as tenants at will only, but they had spent their . .
CitedClarke v Edinburgh and District Tramways Co HL 1919
The House considered the ability of an appellate court to reconsider the facts.
Held: The privileges enjoyed by a trial judge extend not only to questions of credibility.
Lord Shaw said that the judge enjoys ‘those advantages, sometimes . .
CitedYeoman’s Row Management Ltd and Another v Cobbe HL 30-Jul-2008
The parties agreed in principle for the sale of land with potential development value. Considerable sums were spent, and permission achieved, but the owner then sought to renegotiate the deal.
Held: The appeal succeeded in part. The finding . .
CitedUglow v Uglow and others CA 27-Jul-2004
The deceased had in 1976 made a promise to the claimant. The promise was not honoured in the will, and the claimant asserted a proprietary estoppel.
Held: The judge was right to have found that the promise was bound up with the claimant being . .
CitedGissing v Gissing HL 7-Jul-1970
Evidence Needed to Share Benefical Inerests
The family home had been purchased during the marriage in the name of the husband only. The wife asserted that she had a beneficial interest in it.
Held: The principles apply to any case where a beneficial interest in land is claimed by a . .
CitedDann v Spurrier 1802
The tenant had carried out improvements to the property. It was uncertain whether the length of the term (7, 14 or 21 years) was at the option of the lessee alone.
Held: The case was decided on construction of the lease. Lord Eldon made it . .
CitedGillett v Holt and Another CA 23-Mar-2000
Repeated Assurances Created Equitable Estoppel
Repeated assurances, given over years, that the claimant would acquire an interest in property on the death of the person giving the re-assurance, and upon which the claimant relied to his detriment, could found a claim of equitable estoppel. The . .
CitedIn re Basham dec’d; Basham v Basham 1986
The claimant and her husband had helped her mother and her stepfather throughout the claimant’s adult life. She received no remuneration but understood that she would inherit her stepfather’s property when he died. After her mother’s death and until . .
CitedJT Developments v Quinn and Another CA 1990
The plaintiff told the defendant it was willing to grant a lease on the same terms as those contained in a new tenancy that the plaintiff had recently granted to the tenant of a nearby shop, also owned by the plaintiff. The defendant carried out . .
CitedWalton v Walton CA 14-Apr-1994
The mother had repeatedly promised to her son that he would inherit her farm in return for which he left school early and had worked for low wages. Her stock phrase to him had been: ‘You can’t have more money and a farm one day’.
Held: . .
CitedLayton v Martin 1986
The deceased had written to the Plaintiff offering her ‘what emotional security I can give, plus financial security during my life, and financial security on my death.’
Held: The statement could was insufficient to establish either a . .
CitedCarmichael and Another v National Power Plc HL 24-Jun-1999
Tour guides were engaged to act ‘on a casual as required basis’. The guides later claimed to be employees and therefore entitled by statute to a written statement of their terms of employment. Their case was that an exchange of correspondence . .

Cited by:
CitedGill v Woodall and Others ChD 5-Oct-2009
The claimant challenged her late mother’s will which had left the entire estate to a charity. She asserted lack of knowledge and approval and coercion, and also an estoppel. The will included a note explaining that no gift had been made because she . .
CitedNugent v Nugent ChD 20-Dec-2013
The court was asked whether the court has, following the the 2002 Act, an inherent power to order the cancellation of a unilateral notice registered against a title registered under the 2002 Act and, if so, in what circumstances, and how, such a . .
CitedBradley and Another v Heslin and Another ChD 9-Oct-2014
The parties were neighbours. One had a right of way over the other’s land. A gate existed over it. B wished to close the gate for security, but H wished it open in order to be able to drive through it without having to get out of his car, and so he . .
CitedWright v Waters and Another ChD 6-Nov-2014
The claimant sought provision from her late mother’s estate under the 1975 Act, and asserting a proprietary estoppel. The mother had transferred andpound;10,000 to the daughter several years before. The mother had said it was to be invested on her . .
CitedRawlings v Chapman and Others ChD 3-Nov-2015
In 1992 the claimant paid substantial amounts of money towards the cost of building and fitting out a new house on farmland owned by the deceased, Mr. Hopkins, at Aggs Hill, Cheltenham. She alleged that she did so in reliance on promises, frequently . .
CitedLegg and Another v Burton and Others ChD 11-Aug-2017
Testing for Mutual Wills
The parties disputed whether wills were mutual. The claimants challenged the probate granted to a later will of their deceased mother, saying that her earlier will had been mutual and irrevocable after the death of their father.
Held: The . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Trusts, Estoppel, Wills and Probate

Leading Case

Updated: 31 October 2021; Ref: scu.324694

Jennings v Rice, Wilson, Marsh, Norris, Norris, and Reed: CA 22 Feb 2002

The claimant asserted a proprietary estoppel against the respondents. He had worked for the deceased over many years, for little payment, and doing more and more for her. Though he still worked full time at first, he came to spend nights at the property because of her fears of burglary. She did not pay him but said she would ‘see him alright.’ She died intestate. It was accepted that an estoppel arose, but there was a dispute as to the amount of the award. The claimant asserted that if a proprietary estoppel was accepted, the award should be of the property at issue. The defendants asserted that it should be calculated according to the detriment suffered.
Held: It was for the court to decide what was the equitable basis for satisfying the estoppel. That jurisdiction is discretionary and flexible. There must be proportionality between the expectation and the detriment.
‘It cannot be doubted that in this as in every other area of the law, the court must take a principled approach, and cannot exercise a completely unfettered discretion according to the individual judge’s notion of what is fair in any particular case.’ The judge had correctly set the figure according to the detriment suffered.

Lord Justice Aldous Lord Justice Mantell And Lord Justice Robert Walker
[2002] EWCA Civ 159, [2003] 1 P and CR 100, [2003] 1 FCR 501, [2002] WTLR 367
Bailii
England and Wales
Citing:
CitedCrabb v Arun District Council CA 23-Jul-1975
The plaintiff was led to believe that he would acquire a right of access to his land. In reliance on that belief he sold off part of his land, leaving the remainder landlocked.
Held: His claim to have raised an equity was upheld. The plaintiff . .
CitedGillett v Holt and Another CA 23-Mar-2000
Repeated Assurances Created Equitable Estoppel
Repeated assurances, given over years, that the claimant would acquire an interest in property on the death of the person giving the re-assurance, and upon which the claimant relied to his detriment, could found a claim of equitable estoppel. The . .
CitedTaylors Fashions Ltd v Liverpool Victoria Trustees Co Ltd ChD 1981
The fundamental principle that equity is concerned to prevent unconscionable conduct permeates all the elements of the doctrine of estoppel. In the light of the more recent cases, the principle ‘requires a very much broader approach which is . .
CitedPascoe v Turner CA 1-Dec-1978
The defendant had been assured by the plaintiff that ‘the house is yours and everything in it.’ In reliance on that assurance she carried out improvements to the house. Although the improvements were modest, their cost represented a large part of . .
CitedSledmore v Dalby CA 8-Feb-1996
The plaintiff sought possession of a house. She had owned it with her late husband. The defendant lived in and had done much work on the house, but the deceased left it all to the plaintiff and the defendant’s wife who had since also died. She . .
CitedCampbell v Griffin and others CA 27-Jun-2001
. .

Cited by:
CitedParker v Parker ChD 24-Jul-2003
Lord Macclesfield claimed a right to occupy a castle. The owners claimed that he had only a mere tenancy at will. The exact rooms in the castle which had been occupied had varied over time.
Held: The applicant was entitled to reasonable . .
CitedGrundy v Ottey CA 31-Jul-2003
The deceased left his estate within a discretionary trust. The claimant sought to assert an interest in it, claiming an estoppel and, under the 1975 Act, as his partner. They had lived together for four years. She had been dependent upon him . .
CitedHyett v Stanley and others CA 20-Jun-2003
The couple had lived together at the property without being married for several years. The house was held in the man’s sole name, and after his death she sought a half share in it. It was established that she had been told she should have a half . .
CitedUglow v Uglow and others CA 27-Jul-2004
The deceased had in 1976 made a promise to the claimant. The promise was not honoured in the will, and the claimant asserted a proprietary estoppel.
Held: The judge was right to have found that the promise was bound up with the claimant being . .
CitedWormall v Wormall CA 25-Nov-2004
The father had allowed his daughter to run her business from the family farm. The mother and father came to divorce, and the father required vacanat possession of the farm so that he could sell it to satisfy his liabilities in the ancillary relief . .
ApprovedCobbe v Yeomans Row Management Ltd and Others ChD 25-Feb-2005
Principles for Proprietary Estoppel
A developer claimed to have agreed that upon obtaining necessary planning permissions for land belonging to the respondents, he would purchase the land at a price reflecting its new value. The defendant denied that any legally enforceable agreement . .
CitedStrover and Another v Strover and Another ChD 10-May-2005
Insurance policies had been taken out by the partners in a firm. The surviving family of one and the remaining partners contested ownership. The policy was held in part for the benefit of the family. The premiums had been paid from partnership . .
CitedVan Laethem v Brooker and Another ChD 12-Jul-2005
The claimant asserted an interest in several properties by virtue of a common intention constructive trust or by proprietary estoppel. The parties had been engaged to be married.
Held: ‘A [constructive] trust arises in connection with the . .
CitedFisher v Brooker and Another ChD 20-Dec-2006
The claimant said that he had contributed to the copyright in the song ‘A Whiter Shade of Pale’ but had been denied royalties. He had played the organ and particularly the organ solo which had contrbuted significantly to the fame of the record.
CitedBeale v Harvey CA 28-Nov-2003
Land had been divided into three lots on its development, but the site plan did not match the line of a fence actually erected.
Held: The court was not bound by the Watcham case, and would not follow it to allow reference to the later . .
CitedHunt v Soady CA 26-Apr-2007
The parties lived together and held the property as beneficial joint tenants. After the split up and the claimant let the house, she sought an order for its sale, and the appellant defendant sought an order that he should take the equity in the . .
CitedPowell and Another v Benney CA 5-Dec-2007
The claimants asserted an interest under a constructive trust in land held by the defendant.
Held: The judge had found acts of detriment suffered by the claimants. Though elements of the judgment might be criticised, the appeal failed. . .
CitedBrooker and Another v Fisher CA 4-Apr-2008
The claimant had asserted a joint authorship of the song ‘A Whiter Shade of Pale’ written in the sixties. The defendant appealed saying that the claim had been brought too late, and that the finding ignored practice in the music industry. The . .
CitedLondon Borough of Bexley v Maison Maurice Ltd ChD 15-Dec-2006
The council had taken land by compulsory purchase in order to construct a dual carriageway. It then claimed that it had left undedicated a strip .5 metre wide as a ransom strip to prevent the defendant restoring access to the road.
Held: The . .
CitedYeoman’s Row Management Ltd and Another v Cobbe HL 30-Jul-2008
The parties agreed in principle for the sale of land with potential development value. Considerable sums were spent, and permission achieved, but the owner then sought to renegotiate the deal.
Held: The appeal succeeded in part. The finding . .
CitedThorner v Major and others CA 2-Jul-2008
The deceased had written a will, revoked it but then not made another. The claimant had worked for the deceased understanding that property would be left to him, and now claimed that the estate property was held under a trust for him.
Held: . .
CitedGill v Woodall and Others ChD 5-Oct-2009
The claimant challenged her late mother’s will which had left the entire estate to a charity. She asserted lack of knowledge and approval and coercion, and also an estoppel. The will included a note explaining that no gift had been made because she . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Estoppel, Wills and Probate

Leading Case

Updated: 31 October 2021; Ref: scu.167951

Thrasyvoulou v Secretary of State for the Environment: HL 1990

A building owner appealed against enforcement notices which alleged that there had been a material change of use of his buildings in 1982. This notice was issued by a planning authority. As a result of the appeal an inspector determined that the buildings were in hotel use. The use of the buildings did not change between 1982 and 1985. Nevertheless, in the latter year the planning authority issued further enforcement notices alleging that there had been a change of use from hotel to hostel. The Court of Appeal accepted a plea of action estoppel.
Held: The House of Lords confirmed the decision.
Lord Bridge said: ‘In relation to adjudications subject to a comprehensive self-contained statutory code, the presumption, in my opinion, must be that where the statute has created a specific jurisdiction for the determination of any issue which establishes the existence of a legal right, the principle of res judicata applies to give finality to that determination unless an intention to exclude that principle can properly be inferred as a matter of construction of the relevant statutory provisions.’ And
‘The doctrine of res judicata rests on the twin principles which cannot be better expressed than in terms of the two Latin maxims ‘interest reipublicae ut sit finis litium’ and ‘nemo debet bis vexari pro una et eadem causa’. These principles are of such fundamental importance that they cannot be confined in their application to litigation in the private law field. They certainly have their place in the criminal law. In principle they must apply equally to adjudications in the field of public law. In relation to adjudications subject to a comprehensive self-contained statutory code, the presumption, in my opinion, must be that where the statute has created a specific jurisdiction for the determination of any issue which establishes the existence of a legal right, the principle of res judicata applies to give finality to that determination unless an intention to exclude that principle can properly be inferred as a matter of construction of the statutory provisions.’
and ‘the local planning authority were . . . estopped from asserting that there had been a material change of use between certain dates, which expressly contradicted the finding made by the first planning inspector, which was not merely incidental or ancillary to his decision but was an essential foundation for his conclusion that no breach of planning control was involved in the use being made of the structure which was the subject of the first notice.’

Lord Bridge
[1990] 2 AC 273
England and Wales
Cited by:
CitedSecretary of State for Education and Skills v Mairs Admn 25-May-2005
The appellant had been dismissed from the social services department of Haringey Borough Council, and her name placed on a list of persons unsuitable to work with children. She had been criticised in the statutory inquiry into the death of Victoria . .
CitedStancliffe Stone Company Ltd v Peak District National Park Authority QBD 22-Jun-2004
The claimants sought a declaration. Planning permission had been confirmed for four mineral extraction sites by letter in 1952. In 1996, two were listed as now being dormant. The claimant said the letter of 1952 created on single planning permision . .
CitedSpecial Effects Ltd v L’Oreal Sa and Another CA 12-Jan-2007
The defendants had opposed the grant of the trade mark which they were now accused of infringing. The claimants said that having failed at the opposition stage, they were now estopped from challenging the validity of the mark.
Held: It was not . .
CitedCoke-Wallis, Regina (on The Application of) v Institute of Chartered Accountants In England and Wales SC 19-Jan-2011
The appellant chartered accountant had been convicted in Jersey after removing documents from his offices relating to a disputed trust and in breach of an order from his professional institute. The court now considered the relevance and application . .
CitedVirgin Atlantic Airways Ltd v Zodiac Seats UK Ltd SC 3-Jul-2013
Virgin Atlantic Airways Ltd sought to recover damages exceeding 49,000,000 pounds for the infringement of a European Patent which did not exist in the form said to have been infringed. The Technical Board of Appeal of the European Patent Office had . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Planning, Estoppel, Administrative

Updated: 31 October 2021; Ref: scu.228500

Jones and Another v Lydon and Others: ChD 23 Aug 2021

No Estoppels Established to Override Majority

The parties were former members of a band, the Sex Pistols. They disputed the continued duty to accept the decision of the majority of its members as set out in a Band Membership Agreement. Mr Lydon asserted that over the years the obligation had been overridden, establishing certain estoppels in his favour.
Held: After consideration of the many events, it was not established as asserted by Mr Lydon that the agreement has been overridden in such a way as to give rise to an estoppel, and the action failed. The defendant’s application to amend his pleadings also failed.

Sir Anthony Mann
[2021] EWHC 2321 (Ch)
Bailii
England and Wales
Citing:
CitedHM Revenue and Customs v Benchdollar Ltd and Others ChD 11-Jun-2009
Limitation and estoppel in claims for arrears of national insurance contributions
Briggs J said: ‘In my judgment, the principles applicable to the assertion of an estoppel by convention arising out of non-contractual dealings . . are as . .
CitedTinkler v Revenue and Customs SC 30-Jul-2021
Whether the Respondent is estopped by convention from denying that HMRC had opened a valid enquiry when HMRC had sent the notice to the wrong address and the Respondent’s accountants had interacted with HMRC on the basis an enquiry had been . .
CitedHiscox v Outhwaite (No 1) HL 29-Jul-1991
An arbitration award is perfected in the place where the arbitrator signs it, irrespective of where the arbitration to place. If the award is signed in a country party to the 1958 convention, being and forcible as a conventional Ward under the . .
CitedRepublic of India and Another v India Steamship Co Ltd (Indian Endurance and Indian Grace) (No 2) HL 23-Oct-1997
When a action in rem against a ship was in fact parallel to an action in personam begun in India and awaiting a decision; an action was not to be allowed here.
Lord Steyn: ‘It is settled that an estoppel by convention may arise where parties to . .
CitedHamel-Smith v Pycroft and Jetsave Ltd 5-Feb-1987
Peter Gibson J sad: ‘Thus the court is not so rigid and inflexible as to insist on the parties being held to an assumed and incorrect state of fact or law when there is no injustice in allowing a party to resile therefrom (see, for example, Multon . .
CitedSpliethoff’s Bevrachtingskantoor Bv v Bank of China Ltd ComC 17-Apr-2015
Claims under refund guarantees
Carr J DBE said: ‘The legal requirements of an estoppel by representation of fact are well known: (i) a representation which is in law deemed a representation of fact, (ii) that the precise representation was in . .
CitedHarvey v Dunbar Assets Plc CA 13-Feb-2017
This appeal raises an issue of principle in the law of bankruptcy on which there is no previous authority directly in point. If:
(a) a debtor’s application to set aside a statutory demand (‘SD1’) is dismissed on the merits, by application of . .
CitedSu Ling v Goldman Sachs International ComC 26-Mar-2015
Application for leave to amend particulars of claim.
Carr J set out the principal factors which the court should take into account on an application to amend: ‘a) whether to allow an amendment is a matter for the discretion of the court. In . .
CitedLiberty Insurance Pte Ltd and Another v Argo Systems Fze CA 15-Dec-2011
‘Saying nothing and ‘standing by’, ie. doing nothing, are, to my mind, equivocal actions. This court has stated that, in the absence of special circumstances, silence and inaction are, when objectively considered, equivocal and cannot, of . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Contract, Estoppel

Updated: 31 October 2021; Ref: scu.667370

Yaxley v Gotts and Another: CA 24 Jun 1999

Oral Agreement Creating Proprietory Estoppel

The defendant offered to give to the Plaintiff, a builder, the ground floor of a property in return for converting the house, and then managing it. They were friends, and the oral offer was accepted. The property was then actually bought in the name of the first defendant, the second defendant’s son. The Plaintiff nevertheless fulfilled his promise. The parties fell out, and the first Defendant then refused to grant to the Plaintiff any interest in the property. The judge found that the oral agreement with the second Defendant had been adopted by his son. The Plaintiff was entitled to an interest by a proprietary estoppel, and he ordered the first Defendant to grant him a 99 year lease of the ground floor.
Held: The defendant’s appeal failed. The oral agreement was enforceable having created a trust, even though no paper had been signed to evidence the contract as required by law. A constructive trust might be created where previously part performance or proprietary estoppel might have created one. The doctrine of part performance has not survived the 1989 Act, but the doctrine of estoppel may still operate to modify (and sometimes perhaps even counteract) the effect of section 2 of the 1989 Act. The 1989 Act represents ‘a radical change in the law’. ‘In the area of a joint enterprise for the acquisition of land (which may be, but is not necessarily, the matrimonial home) the two concepts [estoppel and constructive trust] coincide’; and ‘the species of constructive trust based on ‘common intention’ is closely akin to, if not indistinguishable from, proprietary estoppel’.

Robert Walker LJ, Beldam LJ, Clarke LJ
Gazette 14-Jul-1999, Times 08-Jul-1999, [1999] 1 WLR 1217, [2000] Ch 162, [1999] EGCS 92, [1999] EWCA Civ 3006, [2000] 1 All ER 711
Bailii
Law of Property (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1989 2
England and Wales
Citing:
CitedCrabb v Arun District Council CA 23-Jul-1975
The plaintiff was led to believe that he would acquire a right of access to his land. In reliance on that belief he sold off part of his land, leaving the remainder landlocked.
Held: His claim to have raised an equity was upheld. The plaintiff . .
CitedFirstpost Homes Ltd v Johnson and Others CA 14-Aug-1995
The parties disputed whether a contract had been made. The proposed contract was contained in a letter and a plan but only the plan was signed by both parties.
Held: The requirements of Section 2 had not been satisfied because it was the . .
CitedSteadman v Steadman HL 1976
A mere payment of a sum of money might amount to an act of part performance, as might the act of a purchaser instructing solicitors to prepare and submit a draft conveyance or transfer, so as to leave asituation capable of enforcement in equity. . .
CitedMcCausland and Another v Duncan Lawrie Ltd and Another CA 18-Jun-1996
The parties entered into a written contract for the sale of land which, in error, provided for completion on a Sunday. The parties varied the date to the Friday but did not execute a new contract which would comply with section 2(1) of the 1989 Act. . .
CitedLester v Foxcroft 1701
Entry into possession under agreement for lease and expenditure of money – Part performance . .
CitedBritan v Rossiter 1879
A contract which fails to meet the standards required under the Act is not not void, but is merely unenforceable. . .
CitedMaddison v Alderson HL 1883
The requirement of the doctrine of part performance is that the acts of part performance relied upon must be ‘referable’ to the contract sued on. The principle underlying the doctrine of part performance was expressed by Lord Selborne: ‘In a suit . .
CitedKok Hoong v Leong Cheong Kweng Mines Ltd PC 1964
A clear public policy underlying a statute (for instance, the need to protect vulnerable persons dealing with moneylenders or landlords) prevents an estoppel arising: ‘To ask whether the law that confronts the estoppel can be seen to represent a . .
CitedWestdeutsche Landesbank Girozentrale v Islington London Borough Council; Kleinwort Benson Ltd v Sandwell Borough Council ChD 23-Feb-1993
A bank, having made payment under an void interest rate swap agreement to a local authority, was entitled to recover the payments made under the equitable doctrine of restitution. It would be wrong to allow the local authorities to enjoy an unjust . .
CitedUnited Bank of Kuwait Plc v Sahib and Others CA 2-Feb-1996
The bank appealed against a decision that the simple deposit of deeds with a bank did not take effect as an equitable charge.
Held: Depositing deeds with a bank is not sufficient to create a charge over them. The old law as to the creation of . .
CitedGodden v Merthyr Tydfil Housing Association CA 15-Jan-1997
The Plaintiff was a building contractor; the Defendant a housing association engaged in developing suitable sites for residential accommodation for letting to tenants. Before the contract the parties had successfully completed what was been called . .
CitedBankers Trust Company v Namdar and Namdar CA 14-Feb-1997
The bank sought repayment of its loan and possession of the defendants’ property. The second defendant said that the charge had only her forged signature.
Held: Non-compliance with section 2 of the 1989 Act does not make a bargain illegal, and . .
CitedKing v Jackson (T/a Jackson Flower Company) CA 16-Jul-1997
The defendant appealed an award of pounds 11,000 damages for unlawful eviction of his tenant. The tenant had found herself unable to pay the rent and had given notice to quit. She was then told to leave immediately. The judge awarded statutory . .
CitedPlimmer v Mayor, Councillors and Citizens of the City of Wellington PC 1884
(New Zealand) Mr Plimmer had occupied land under a revocable licence from the Corporation’s predecessor-in-title and at their request had made extensive improvements to it. He sought compensation when the land was to be vested in the defendant. The . .
CitedGregory v Mighell 1811
. .
CitedTake Harvest Ltd v Liu and Another PC 9-Mar-1993
(Hong Kong) An oral agreement to surrender a lease of less than three years might not defeat a rent arrears claim under an estoppel.
An unenforceable agreement can be used as a defence in an action brought by another party only if raising that . .
CitedGissing v Gissing HL 7-Jul-1970
Evidence Needed to Share Benefical Inerests
The family home had been purchased during the marriage in the name of the husband only. The wife asserted that she had a beneficial interest in it.
Held: The principles apply to any case where a beneficial interest in land is claimed by a . .
CitedGrant v Edwards and Edwards CA 24-Mar-1986
A couple were not married but lived together in Vincent Farmhouse in which the plaintiff claimed a beneficial interest on separation. The female partner was told by the male partner that the only reason for not acquiring the property in joint names . .
CitedLloyds Bank plc v Rosset HL 29-Mar-1990
The house had been bought during the marriage but in the husband’s sole name. The plaintiff’s charge secured the husband’s overdraft. The bank issued possession proceedings. Mr Rosset had left, but Mrs Rosset claimed, as against the bank an interest . .
CitedLloyds Bank Plc v Carrick and Another CA 17-Apr-1996
Mrs Carrick was a widow who orally agreed with her brother in law, a builder, to sell her house and pay him the proceeds, for which he would provide her with a new house. She did so and moved into the new house, which remained in the . .
CitedConnecticut Fire Insurance Co v Kavanagh PC 1892
An appeal court must scrutinise most carefully an argument or point not taken at the trial and presented for the first time on appeal to ensure that injustice is not caused. ‘When a question of law is raised for the first time in a court of last . .
CitedHodgson v Marks ChD 1970
The plaintiff, an elderly widow, transferred her house into the name of her lodger, but remained in occupation of the house, on exactly the same basis as before, until the lodger sold the house and the purchaser had mortgaged it to a building . .
CitedBlack-Clawson International Ltd v Papierwerke Waldhof Aschaffenburg AG HL 5-Mar-1975
Statute’s Mischief May be Inspected
The House considered limitations upon them in reading statements made in the Houses of Parliament when construing a statute.
Held: It is rare that a statute can be properly interpreted without knowing the legislative object. The courts may . .
CitedPascoe v Turner CA 1-Dec-1978
The defendant had been assured by the plaintiff that ‘the house is yours and everything in it.’ In reliance on that assurance she carried out improvements to the house. Although the improvements were modest, their cost represented a large part of . .
Leave to appealYaxley v Gotts and Gotts CA 20-Mar-1998
The defendants were granted leave to appeal out of time. . .

Cited by:
CitedX v Y, Z sub nom In re E (Enduring power of attorney) ChD 18-Feb-2000
The application was an appeal against an order registering an enduring power of attorney. The appeal from Master Lush was by way of rehearing. The donor had executed two powers. The second was invalid, and the donees of the first power sought to . .
CitedParker v Parker ChD 24-Jul-2003
Lord Macclesfield claimed a right to occupy a castle. The owners claimed that he had only a mere tenancy at will. The exact rooms in the castle which had been occupied had varied over time.
Held: The applicant was entitled to reasonable . .
CitedEvans v James (Administratrix of the Estate of Thomas Hopkin Deceased) CA 5-Jul-1999
Before the parties called evidence, and having read the papers, the court considered that there was no real defence shown, and invited submissions. Negotiations for the grant of a tenancy had been terminated by the sudden illness of the proposed . .
CitedHyett v Stanley and others CA 20-Jun-2003
The couple had lived together at the property without being married for several years. The house was held in the man’s sole name, and after his death she sought a half share in it. It was established that she had been told she should have a half . .
CitedNweze and Another v Nwoko CA 29-Mar-2004
The parties had settled their dispute in an oral compromise agreement under which it was agreed that land would be sold at the best price reasonably obtainable. One now argued this was unenforceable as an agreement for the disposal of land requiring . .
CitedOxley v Hiscock CA 6-May-2004
The parties were not married, but had brought together their resources to purchase a home in the name of one of them. Nothing had been said about the respective shares on which the property was to be held.
Held: The shares were to be assessed . .
CitedBanner Homes Group Plc v Luff Developments and Another CA 10-Feb-2000
Competing building companies agreed not to bid against each other for the purchase of land. One proceeded and the other asserted that the land was then held on trust for the two parties as a joint venture.
Held: Although there was no formal . .
CitedRavenocean Ltd v Garner ChD 19-Jan-2001
The claimant asserted a constructive trust arising from an oral agreement by the defendant to sell his land to the plaintiff. It was conditional on the claimant obtaining planning permission. Pursuant to the agreement, and relying on it, the . .
CitedVan Laethem v Brooker and Another ChD 12-Jul-2005
The claimant asserted an interest in several properties by virtue of a common intention constructive trust or by proprietary estoppel. The parties had been engaged to be married.
Held: ‘A [constructive] trust arises in connection with the . .
CitedScottish and Newcastle Plc v Lancashire Mortgage Corporation Ltd CA 5-Jul-2007
The parties each had a charge over a property, and now disputed which had priority. The brewery appealed an order for rectification of the registers to reverse priority on the basis of an estoppel. The charge in their favour had been registered . .
CitedPowell and Another v Benney CA 5-Dec-2007
The claimants asserted an interest under a constructive trust in land held by the defendant.
Held: The judge had found acts of detriment suffered by the claimants. Though elements of the judgment might be criticised, the appeal failed. . .
CitedEyestorm Ltd v Hoptonacre Homes Ltd CA 19-Dec-2007
The appellant had agreed to take leases on a development of the defendant, hoping to sell the apartments on at a profit. After difficulties, the appellant refused to complete, and the defendant forfeited the deposits.
Held: Eyestorm’s appeal . .
CitedYeoman’s Row Management Ltd and Another v Cobbe CA 31-Jul-2006
The defendants orally agreed to sell the claimant a block of flats for andpound;12 million if he first obtained planning permission for it on terms as to a sharing of subsequent development profits. The claimant spent over andpound;100,000 and . .
CitedAnderson Antiques (UK) Ltd v Anderson Wharf (Hull) Ltd and Another ChD 23-May-2007
anderson_andersonChD2008
The claimants owned land against which they said, the defendant had wrongfully registered notices. They sought removal of the notices, damages, and an injunction to prevent further notices being registered. The first defendant asserted an oral . .
CitedBrightlingsea Haven Ltd and Another v Morris and others QBD 30-Oct-2008
The caravan park operated under planning consents requiring the caravans to be occupied only during certain months. The defendants had bought their mobile homes from the claimants to occupy full time, and said that the claimants knew of this. The . .
CitedSharma and Another v Simposh Ltd CA 23-Nov-2011
The parties created an oral (and therefore void) contract for a development, the claimants paid a deposit, expressed to be non-refundable, and the defendant builders completed the building work. The buyers backed out. The developer now appealed . .
CitedScott v Southern Pacific Mortgages Ltd and Others SC 22-Oct-2014
The appellant challenged a sale and rent back transaction. He said that the proposed purchaser had misrepresented the transaction to them. The Court was asked s whether the home owners had interests whose priority was protected by virtue of section . .
CitedLegg and Another v Burton and Others ChD 11-Aug-2017
Testing for Mutual Wills
The parties disputed whether wills were mutual. The claimants challenged the probate granted to a later will of their deceased mother, saying that her earlier will had been mutual and irrevocable after the death of their father.
Held: The . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Land, Trusts, Estoppel

Leading Case

Updated: 31 October 2021; Ref: scu.90659

J S Bloor (Measham) Ltd v Eric Myles Calcott: ChD 23 Nov 2001

The tenant had claimed a tenancy under the Act. The landlord sought to assert a proprietary estoppel against them. There was nothing in the 1986 Act to stop the claimants relying on a proprietary estoppel and asserting their claims to occupation. The defendant’s tenancy was unenforceable against them.
Mr Justice Hart
Times 12-Dec-2001, Gazette 24-Jan-2002, [2001] EWHC Ch 467, CH1997 J No: 5742
Bailii
Agricultural Holdings Act 1986
Citing:
CitedJohnson v Moreton HL 1980
The tenant had, in the tenancy agreement itself, purported to contract ‘not in any event to serve a counter-notice under Section 24(1)’ of the 1948 Act.
Held: A head tenant under an agricultural tenancy has the right to challenge any notice to . .
CitedKeen v Holland CA 1984
Oliver LJ rejected a submission that, where parties were shown to have a common view about the legal effect of a contract into which they had entered and it was established that one of them would not, to the other’s knowledge, have entered into it . .
CitedSolle v Butcher CA 1949
Fundamental Mistake Needed to Allow Rescission
The court set out the circumstances in which the equitable remedy of rescission of a contract is available for mutual mistake. The mistake has to be as to some fundamental element of the contract. What is ‘fundamental’ is a wider category of event . .
CitedLawrence and Another v Lexcore Holdings Ltd 1978
Effect of a mistake in a document. . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.
Updated: 16 October 2021; Ref: scu.166919

Ram and Another v Chauhan and Another: Misc 19 Jul 2017

Leeds County Court – Challenge to validity of will – witnesses not present – lack of capacity – undue influence
Saffmann HHJ
[2017] EW Misc 12 (CC)
Bailii
Wills Act 1837 9
England and Wales
Citing:
CitedBanks v Goodfellow QBD 1870
Test for Capacity to Execute Will
The testator suffered from delusions, but not so badly or in such a way as was found to affect his capacity or to influence his testamentary disposition. The judge had given the following direction: ‘The question is whether . . the testator was . .
CitedKey and Another v Key and Others ChD 5-Mar-2010
The will was challenged for want of testamentary capacity. The testator was 89 years old, and the will was made within a week of the death of his wife of 65 years and without the solicitor having taken any proper steps to satisfy himself as to the . .
CitedParker and Another v Felgate and Tilly ChD 7-Jul-1883
Capacity to execute Will once instructions given
A will was challenged on the basis of alleged lack of capacity. The testatrix had capacity when instructing her solicitor, but suffered from Bright’s disease which affected her kidney, and she fell into a coma before it was prepared. She was roused . .
CitedRe Loxston, Abbot v Richardson ChD 2006
Mr N Strauss QC said: ‘The question is always whether the testator had the necessary capacity at the time the Will was executed, and that may depend upon the efforts made by others to enable her to have in mind all the relevant considerations . .
CitedEdwards v Edwards and others ChD 3-May-2007
Family members challenged the will saying that one son had exercised undue influence over the testatrix.
Held: The beneficiary son had poisoned his mother’s mind against the other family members. The will would be set aside for his undue . .
CitedPerrins v Holland and Others; In re Perrins, deceased CA 21-Jul-2010
The testator had given instructions for his will and received a draft will. The judge had found that he had capacity to make the will when he gave instructions but not when it was executed. The will having been made in accordance with his . .
CitedHawes v Burgess and Another CA 19-Feb-2013
The appellant challenged pronouncement against the validity of wills on the ground of lack of testamentary capacity and want of knowledge and approval.
Mummery LJ said: ‘Although talk of presumptions and their rebuttal is not regarded as . .
CitedSimon v Byford and Others CA 13-Mar-2014
The court was asked whether the testatrix (a) had testamentary capacity and (b) knew and approved the contents of her will when she executed it at or immediately after her 88th birthday party. The judge had answered both those questions in the . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.
Updated: 16 October 2021; Ref: scu.590780

Dexter Ltd v Vlieland-Boddy: CA 2003

The court discussed the significance of Johnson v Gore Wood.
Clarke LJ said: ‘The principles to be derived from the authorities, of which by far the most important is Johnson v Gore Wood and Co [2002] 2 AC 1, can be summarised as follows:
i) Where A has brought an action against B, a later action against B or C may be struck out where the second action is an abuse of process.
ii) A later action against B is much more likely to be held to be an abuse of process than a later action against C.
iii) The burden of establishing abuse of process is on B or C or as the case may be.
iv) It is wrong to hold that because a matter could have been raised in earlier proceedings it should have been, so as to render the raising of it in later proceedings necessarily abusive.
v) The question in every case is whether, applying a broad merits based approach, A’s conduct is in all the circumstances an abuse of process.
vi) The court will rarely find that the later action is an abuse of process unless the later action involves unjust harassment or oppression of B or C.’
Clarke LJ, Scott Baker LJ
[2003] EWCA Civ 14
Bailii
England and Wales
Citing:
CitedJohnson v Gore Wood and Co HL 14-Dec-2000
Shareholder May Sue for Additional Personal Losses
A company brought a claim of negligence against its solicitors, and, after that claim was settled, the company’s owner brought a separate claim in respect of the same subject-matter.
Held: It need not be an abuse of the court for a shareholder . .

Cited by:
CitedMeretz Investments Nv and Another v ACP Ltd and others ChD 30-Jan-2006
The applicant challenged the exercise of a power of sale under a mortgage, saying that the mortgagee’s purposes included purposes not those under the mortgage. The parties had been involved in an attempted development of a penthouse.
Held: The . .
CitedPacific International Sports Clubs Ltd v Soccer Marketing International Ltd and Others ChD 24-Jul-2009
The parties disputed ownership of shares in the football club Dynamo Kiev. Claims were to be made under Ukrainian company law and in equity. The claimant (a company registered in Mauritius) sought to proceed here. The defendants (largely companies . .
CitedWahab v Khan and Others; In re Abdus Sattar Sheikh deceased ChD 12-Apr-2011
The claimant had asked the court to revoke the probate granted in his brother’s estate. He appealed now against a strike out of his request. He alleged that the will was a forgery. The executor’s and defendants were not relations of the deceased, . .
CitedGladman Commercial Properties v Fisher Hargreaves Proctor and Others CA 14-Nov-2013
The claimant appealed against the striking out of his claims for fraudulent or negligent misrepresentation as to the suitability for deveopment of two former fire service properties. The court had said that a settlement with co-tortfeasors operated . .
CitedAldi Stores Ltd v WSP Group Plc and others CA 28-Nov-2007
Aldi appealed against an order striking out as an abuse of process its claims against the defendant on a construction dispute. The defendant said the claims should have been brought as part of earlier proceedings.
Held: The appeal succeeded. . .
CitedSpicer v The Commissioner of Police of The Metropolis QBD 6-Jul-2020
The claimant alleged defamation. He had been acquitted of a criminal offence and said that material published by the defendant continued to imply or assert his guilt of the offence. The defendant argued truth. The claimant now sought a strike out of . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.
Updated: 10 October 2021; Ref: scu.241332

Hunter v Chief Constable of the West Midlands Police: HL 19 Nov 1981

No collateral attack on Jury findigs.

An attempt was made to open up in a civil action, allegations of assaults by the police prior to the making of confessions which had been disposed of in a voir dire in the course of a criminal trial. The plaintiffs had imprisoned having spent many years after conviction for IRA pub bombings in Birmingham.
Held: This was a collateral attack amounting to an abuse of process, not because of the limits of police immunity, but to provide an effective immunity. The purpose of the action was not in truth to obtain damages from the Chief Constable but to undermine the conviction. Unless debarred from doing so, defendants convicted after a full and fair trial who failed to appeal successfully, may challenge their convictions by suing advocates who appeared for them. Public policy requires a defendant, who seeks to challenge his conviction, to do so directly by seeking to appeal his conviction.
Lord Diplock said: ‘My Lords, this is a case about abuse of the process of the High Court. It concerns the inherent power which any court of justice must possess to prevent misuse of its procedure in a way which, although not inconsistent with the literal application of its procedural rules, would nevertheless be manifestly unfair to a party to litigation before it, or would otherwise bring the administration of justice into disrepute among right-thinking people. The circumstances in which abuse of process can arise are very varied; those which give rise to the instant appeal must surely be unique. It would, in my view, be most unwise if this House were to use this occasion to say anything that might be taken as limiting to fixed categories the kinds of circumstances in which the court has a duty (I disavow the word discretion) to exercise this salutary power.’
. . And ‘The abuse of process which the instant case exemplifies is the initiation of proceedings in a court of justice for the purpose of mounting a collateral attack upon a final decision against the intending plaintiff which has been made by another court of competent jurisdiction in previous proceedings in which the intending plaintiff had a full opportunity of contesting the decision in the court by which it was made.’
Lord Diplock, Lord Russell of Killowen, Lord Keith of Kinkel, Lord Roskill, Lord Brandon
[1982] AC 529, [1981] 3 WLR 906, [1981] UKHL 13, [1981] 3 All ER 727
Bailii
Civil Evidence Act 1968 11
England and Wales
Citing:
CitedReichel v Magrath PC 1889
The new vicar of Sparsholt, Dr Magrath, was able to rely on the abuse of process even though he had not been party to earlier proceedings between Reichel and the Bishop of Oxford and the Queen’s College and so was not bound by any issue estoppel . .
CitedStevenson v Garnett 1898
AL Smith LJ: ‘The court ought to be slow to strike out a statement of claim or defence, and to dismiss an action as frivolous and vexatious yet it ought to do so when as here, it has been shown that the identical question sought to be raised has . .
Appeal fromMcIlkenny v Chief Constable of the West Midlands CA 1980
The appellant had been convicted of an IRA bombing, causing loss of many lives. The appellant and his other co-accused alleged that their confessions had been induced by police violence. The trial judge ruled that their confessions were voluntary . .

Cited by:
CitedGribbon v Lutton and Another CA 19-Dec-2001
The defendant solicitors acted in obtaining and holding a deposit on the sale of land. They issued interpleader proceedings which decided that the deposit was payable to the purchaser. The vendor then sued the solicitors in negligence. The . .
CitedThe Secretary of State for Trade and Industry v Bairstow CA 11-Mar-2003
The Secretary of State attempted, in the course of director’s disqualification proceedings, to rely upon findings made against Mr Bairstow in an earlier wrongful dismissal action to which he had been a party but the Secretary of State not. The . .
CitedSmith v Linskills CA 1996
The claimant, a convicted burglar took proceedings against his former solicitors. He alleged that the negligence of the solicitor caused his wrongful conviction.
Held: The case was dismissed. The claimant was seeking to re-litigate issues . .
CitedArthur JS Hall and Co (A Firm) v Simons; Barratt v Woolf Seddon (A Firm); Harris v Schofield Roberts and Hill (A Firm) HL 20-Jul-2000
Clients sued their solicitors for negligence. The solicitors responded by claiming that, when acting as advocates, they had the same immunities granted to barristers.
Held: The immunity from suit for negligence enjoyed by advocates acting in . .
CitedDarker v Chief Constable of The West Midlands Police HL 1-Aug-2000
The plaintiffs had been indicted on counts alleging conspiracy to import drugs and conspiracy to forge traveller’s cheques. During the criminal trial it emerged that there had been such inadequate disclosure by the police that the proceedings were . .
CitedSweetman v Nathan and others CA 25-Jul-2003
The claimant had been engaged with his solicitor in a fraudulent land transaction. He now sought to sue the solicitor for negligence. The solicitor replied that the claimant was unable to rely upon his own unlawful act to make a claim.
Held: . .
CitedRegina v Chichester Justices ex parte Stephen Alexander Crowther Admn 14-Oct-1998
The defendant sought judicial review of an order made in 1998 issuing a warrant for his committal for failure to pay a confiscation order made in 1991. He had served 6 years imprisonment, and in default of payment a further 18 months. He was . .
CitedGood Challenger Navegante S A v Metalexportimport SA CA 24-Nov-2003
The claimant sought to enforce an arbitration award made in 1983. Time might otherwise have expired, but the claimants relied on a fax which they said was an acknowledgement of the debt, and also upon a finding in a Romanian court which created an . .
CitedKent Pharmaceuticals Ltd, (Regina on the Application of ) v Serious Fraud Office and Another Admn 17-Dec-2003
The claimant sought judicial review of the decision of the respondent to disclose documents obtained by it from them during an investigation.
Held: The decisions to disclose material to the DoH were ‘in accordance with law’ within the meaning . .
CitedPolanski v Conde Nast Publications Ltd HL 10-Feb-2005
The claimant wished to pursue his claim for defamation against the defendant, but was reluctant to return to the UK to give evidence, fearing arrest and extradition to the US. He appealed refusal of permission to be interviewed on video tape. Held . .
CitedRegina v Shanks CACD 19-Mar-2003
The appellant appealed his conviction for murder. He had shot his lover as she walked away from an argument. The fact of his conviction following mention of a guilty plea to possession of the firearm was complained of.
Held: The judge had . .
CitedRegina v Leeds Magistrates Court ex parte Serif Systems Limited and Hamilton Admn 9-Oct-1997
The applicant sought that summonses be set aside as an abuse of process, being begun to embarrass him as he set out to become an MP. Thirty one private summonses had been issued.
Held: Of the summonses to be continued it could not be said that . .
CitedLevey, Regina v CACD 27-Jul-2006
The defendant appealed against his conviction of manslaughter of his baby son. He said that a family court had previously investigated the same allegations and had explicitly found itself unable to say which of himself and the mother were . .
CitedRegina v Belmarsh Magistrates’ Court ex parte Fiona Watts Admn 8-Feb-1999
The defendant sought to have dismissed as an abuse of proces charges against her that as an officer of Customs and Excise prosecuting the now private prosecutor, she had committed various offences.
Held: The magistrate was vested with . .
CitedLaing v Taylor Walton (A Firm) QBD 20-Feb-2007
The claimant sought to pursue an action for professional negligence against his solicitors. They said that the action was an abuse being an attempted relitigation of matters already settled when a judge had decided that the defendants had not owed a . .
CitedJohnson v Gore Wood and Co HL 14-Dec-2000
Shareholder May Sue for Additional Personal Losses
A company brought a claim of negligence against its solicitors, and, after that claim was settled, the company’s owner brought a separate claim in respect of the same subject-matter.
Held: It need not be an abuse of the court for a shareholder . .
CitedTaylor Walton (A Firm) v Laing CA 15-Nov-2007
The appellants appealed against a refusal to strike out as an abuse of process the respondent’s claim against them for professional negligence in the drafting of development agreements.
Buxton LJ considered the nature of the enquiry on such an . .
CitedAshley and Another v Chief Constable of Sussex Police HL 23-Apr-2008
The claimants sought to bring an action for damages after a family member suspected of dealing drugs, was shot by the police. At the time he was naked. The police officer had been acquitted by a criminal court of murder. The chief constable now . .
CitedIn re Norris, Application by Norris HL 28-Jun-2001
The applicant’s husband had been made the subject of a drugs confiscation order. Part of this was an order against the house. She had failed in asserting that the house was hers. Her appeal to a civil court had been disallowed as an abuse. It was . .
CitedSpecialist Group International Ltd v Deakin and Another CA 23-May-2001
Law upon res judicata – action estoppel and issue estoppel and the underlying policy interest whereby there is finality in litigation and litigants are not vexed twice on the same matter.
(May LJ) ‘the authorities taken as a whole tend to . .
CitedCheltenham Borough Council v Laird QBD 15-Jun-2009
The council sought damages saying that their former chief executive had not disclosed her history of depressive illness when applying for her job.
Held: The replies were not dishonest as the form could have been misconstrued. The claim failed. . .
CitedCalzaghe v Warren QBD 20-Jan-2010
The claimant boxer had secured judgement for fight fees from a company operated by the respondent manager and promoter. After the judgment the defendant had put the company into administration. The claimant now sought payment from the defendant . .
CitedVaughan v London Borough of Lewisham and Others QBD 11-Apr-2013
The claimant sought an order to restrain anticipated defamatory comments and evidence to be given to an employment tribunal.
Held: It could not be said as the claimant asserted that dfeences were bound to fail, and no determination should be . .
CitedHi-Lite Electrical Ltd v Wolseley UK Ltd QBD 17-Jul-2009
The claimant sought a contribution from the defendant towards its liability for a fire at its premises, as found in earlier proceedings against the now claimant. The defendant had filed a defence merely not admitting, and not denying, responsibility . .
CitedOMV Petrom Sa v Glencore International Ag ComC 7-Feb-2014
The claimant sought to have struck out as abuse of process parts of the defence, saying that the factual issues raised had already been resolved in arbitration proceedings, but as against a different oarty. The defendant replied that the arbitration . .
CitedMichael Wilson and Partners Ltd v Sinclair and Others ComC 21-Sep-2012
The claimant company alleged that the defendants had variously received assests (shares and cash) acquired by a former partner in the claimant company and held on his behalf, in breach of his obligations to the caimant partnership. The defendants . .
CitedSpicer v The Commissioner of Police of The Metropolis QBD 6-Jul-2020
The claimant alleged defamation. He had been acquitted of a criminal offence and said that material published by the defendant continued to imply or assert his guilt of the offence. The defendant argued truth. The claimant now sought a strike out of . .
CitedAmin v Director General of The Security Service and Others CA 26-Jun-2015
The claimant’s claims against the police had been struck out as a collateral attack on a criminal court decision.
Held: ‘If the former decision was made in criminal proceedings leading to a conviction, it is proper to focus attention on the . .
CitedAmin v Director General of The Security Service (MI5) and Others QBD 26-Jun-2013
The claimant sought damages for personal injury and false imprisonment.
Held: The claim was struck out as an abuse of process. There was an overlap with findings made against him in the Crown Court in a voir dire taking place in the course of . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.
Updated: 10 October 2021; Ref: scu.181062

Talbot v Berkshire County Council: CA 23 Mar 1993

In a motor accident, both driver and passenger were injured. The passenger sued the driver. The driver’s insurers, without notice to the driver, made a third party claim against the Berkshire County Council, claiming contribution as between joint tortfeasors but including no claim for the driver’s own injuries. The driver later discovered his insurer’s action and himself sought damages from the council.
Held: A cause of action estoppel, which estops a plaintiff pursuing a second action which could have been combined with a first action, applied to an action for personal injuries to prevent a motorist suing a highway authority. The insurers’ solicitors appeared to have been negligent but the claim against the county council should be struck out unless there were special circumstances, and in this case there were not.
Stuart-Smith LJ said: ‘There can be no doubt that the [driver’s] personal injury claim could have been brought at the time of [the passenger’s] action. It could have been included in the original third party notice issued against the council (R.S.C., Ord. 16, r. 1(b)(c)); it could have been started by a separate writ and consolidated with or ordered to be tried with [the passenger’s] action: Ord. 4, r. 9. The third party proceedings could have been amended at any time before trial and perhaps even during the trial to include such a claim, notwithstanding that it was statute-barred, since it arose out of the same or substantially the same facts as the cause of action in respect of which relief was already claimed, namely, contribution or indemnity in respect of [the passenger’s] claim: Ord. 20, r. 5. In my opinion, if it was to be pursued, it should have been so brought.’ and

‘The rule is thus in two parts. The first relates to those points which were actually decided by the court: this is res judicata in the strict sense. Secondly, those which might have been brought forward at the time, but were not. The second is not a true case of res judicata but rather is founded on the principle of public policy in preventing multiplicity of actions, it being in the public interest that there should be an end to litigation: the court will stay or strike out the subsequent action as an abuse of process.’
Stuart-Smith LJ, Mann LJ, Nourse LJ
Times 23-Mar-1993, [1994] QB 290
England and Wales
Cited by:
CitedC (A Minor) v Hackney London Borough Council CA 10-Nov-1995
The mother had claimed in damages for the injuries to her health from the landlord authority’s failure to repair. Her child then brought a subsequent action in respect of his own injuries. The authority claimed the action should be stopped as res . .
CitedJohnson v Gore Wood and Co HL 14-Dec-2000
Shareholder May Sue for Additional Personal Losses
A company brought a claim of negligence against its solicitors, and, after that claim was settled, the company’s owner brought a separate claim in respect of the same subject-matter.
Held: It need not be an abuse of the court for a shareholder . .
CitedBrown v Rice and Another ChD 14-Mar-2007
The parties, the bankrupt and her trustee, had engaged in a mediation which failed at first, but applicant said an agreement was concluded on the day following. The defendants denied this, and the court as asked to determine whether a settlement had . .
CitedDivine-Bortey v London Borough of Brent CA 14-May-1998
The claimant had brought and lost an action relating to his dismissal by the defendant, who now appealed against an order that he was not estopped from bring a second claim on a different basis namely race discrimination, disapplying the rule in . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.
Updated: 29 September 2021; Ref: scu.89696

Veuve Monnier et ses Fils, Limited, In re; Ex parte Bloomenthal: CA 9 Jun 1896

B lent to a limited company 1000 pounds on its promissory note on the terms that the company should give him collateral security on 10,000 fully paid up 1 pound preference shares, and that if the company should wish to pay off any part of the amount B. was to return shares at the same rate at which he had taken them. The company handed to B. certificates for 10,000 shares, which certificates stated that B was the registered holder of them, and that they were fully paid up. They were in fact shares on which nothing had been paid. The company sold some of these shares, and B executed transfers of the shares sold. His name remained on the register for the remainder when an order was made for winding up the company, and he was placed on the list of contributories in respect of them. B applied to have his name struck out from the list of contributories on the ground that the company were estopped by the certificates from denying that the shares were fully paid up.
Held: (affirming the decision of Vaughan Williams J), that as B knew that the shares were the property of the company, that they had not been transferred to him, and that they had not been fully paid up by himself, he knew facts enough to lead any one who considered them to the conclusion that the shares were not fully paid up; that he, therefore, could not rely on the certificates as an estoppel, and that he must remain on the list of contributories.
Lindley LJ, Rigby LJ
[1896] UKLawRpCh 103, (1896) 2 Ch 525
Commonlii
England and Wales
Cited by:
Appeal fromBloomenthal v Ford HL 1897
The appellant lent money to a limited company upon the terms that he should have as collateral security fully paid shares in the company and the company handed to the appellant certificates for 10000 shares of 1 pound each. The certificates stated . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.
Updated: 29 September 2021; Ref: scu.653303

Take Harvest Ltd v Liu and Another: PC 9 Mar 1993

(Hong Kong) An oral agreement to surrender a lease of less than three years might not defeat a rent arrears claim under an estoppel.
An unenforceable agreement can be used as a defence in an action brought by another party only if raising that defence does not amount to de facto enforcement of the oral contract. Their Lordships stated that they did not accept: ‘in its unqualified form the proposition that … an oral agreement is available as a defence in the same way and to the same extent as any enforceable contract. If due regard is to be paid to the statute, the question in any given case must be whether the party who relies on the oral agreement is in substance seeking to enforce it. If he is so seeking, it matters not whether he happens to be plaintiff or defendant in the proceedings or whether, as a matter of formal pleading, he is seeking to enforce the oral agreement by way of claim, defence, counterclaim or otherwise … In any such case due effect must be given to the statute.’
Sir Christopher Slade
Ind Summary 12-Apr-1993, Gazette 21-Apr-1993, [1993] AC 552, [1993] UKPC 9, [1994] ANZ Conv R 72, [1993] 2 All ER 459, [1993] 2 WLR 786
Bailii
Australia
Citing:
CitedJenkin R Lewis and Son Ltd v Kerman CA 1970
On the facts, an agreement between landlord and tenant for an increase in the rent did not result in a surrender of the current lease and grant of a new one.
Russell LJ summarised a set of circumstances in which, on well-established . .

Cited by:
CitedYaxley v Gotts and Another CA 24-Jun-1999
Oral Agreement Creating Proprietory Estoppel
The defendant offered to give to the Plaintiff, a builder, the ground floor of a property in return for converting the house, and then managing it. They were friends, and the oral offer was accepted. The property was then actually bought in the name . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.
Updated: 29 September 2021; Ref: scu.89694

Bloomenthal v Ford: HL 1897

The appellant lent money to a limited company upon the terms that he should have as collateral security fully paid shares in the company and the company handed to the appellant certificates for 10000 shares of 1 pound each. The certificates stated that he was the registered holder of the shares, and that on each of them before and I don’t have been paid. no money had in fact been paid apologise, which were issued from the company direct to the appellant, but he did not know this and believe the documentation that they were fully paid shares. An order having been made to wind up the company the appellant was placed on the list of contributors.
Held: Since the company had obtained the loan by a representation that the shares were fully paid which the appellant believed and acted upon, the company and the liquidator were estopped from alleging that the shares were not fully paid and the appellant was entitled to have his name removed from the list of contributors.
If a company issues, as security to someone who provides the company with a loan, certificates stating that shares are fully paid up, the liquidator is estopped from denying that the shares are fully paid up when settling a list of contributories
There is no need, and indeed it is wrong, to introduce into the common law notion of estoppel, the equitable doctrine of the bona fide purchaser for value without notice.
Lord Halsbury C said: ‘The ground upon which it is suggested appears to be possibly a question of law and partly a question of fact. As to the question of law I confess for myself I entertain a doubt whether it is ever true in a case where one person has been induced to act by the misrepresentation and another that you can go beyond the fact whether it is so or not. In arriving at a conclusion upon this question of fact all the circumstances must be considered. A statement may be made so preposterous in its nature that nobody could believe but anyone was misled’.
Lord Herschell said: ‘I cannot myself think that, where an unequivocal statement is made by one party to another of a particular fact, the party who made that statement can get rid of the estoppel which arises from another man acting upon it by saying that if the person to whom he made the statement had reflected and thought all about it he would have come to see that it could not be true. Of course, if the person to whom the statement was made did not believe it, and they did not act on the belief induced by it, there is no estoppel. But supposing he did believe it and did act on the belief induced by it then it seems to me you do not get rid of the estoppel by saying ‘If you had thought more about it you would have seen it was not true.’
The very person who makes the statement of that sort has put the other party off making further inquiry. He had produced on his mind and impression as a result of which further inquiry is thought to be unnecessary or useless. Therefore, I confess I do not think that it is legitimate to speculate what is the conclusion at which a man would have arrived if he had put together – pieced together – all the considerations that might have occurred to a reflective mind cogitating on the whole subject, and then to say that because he would have come to the conclusion that the statement made to him could not have been true, he is not entitled to act upon it as if it had been true, when in point of fact he did not enter into those considerations, but did believe it and did act upon it.’
Lord Herschell, Lord Halsbury C
[1897] AC 16, (1897) 66 LJ Ch 253, (1897) LT 205, (1897) 45 WR 449, (1897) 13 TLR 240, (1897) 4 Mans 156
England and Wales
Citing:
Appeal fromVeuve Monnier et ses Fils, Limited, In re; Ex parte Bloomenthal CA 9-Jun-1896
B lent to a limited company 1000 pounds on its promissory note on the terms that the company should give him collateral security on 10,000 fully paid up 1 pound preference shares, and that if the company should wish to pay off any part of the amount . .

Cited by:
CitedCadbury Schweppes Plc and Another v Halifax Share Dealing Ltd and Another ChD 23-May-2006
Fraudsters had successfully contrived to sell shares of others, by re-registering the shares to new addresses and requesting new certificates. The question was which of the company, the company registrars and the stockbrokers should bear the loss. . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.
Updated: 27 September 2021; Ref: scu.242176

Budejovicky Budvar Narodni Podnik v Anheuser-Busch Inc: CA 20 Oct 2009

The parties had long disputed the use of the trade marks ‘Bud’ and ‘Budweiser’ for their beers. The claimant now said that the defendants had made an abusive registration under the 1994 Act, by requesting a declaration that the registration by the claimants was invalid, being later in time, though on the same day.
Held: No abuse had been shown: ‘People are entitled to use the rules of substantive and procedural law to their best advantage.’ and ‘Merely to use the process cannot be an abuse of it.’ No estoppel was made out.
Nevertheless, there was a question for the European Court to resolve as to the meaning of ‘acquiescence’ in a case of honest concurrent use, and a question was referred accordingly.
Ward LJ, Jacob LJ, Warren LJ
[2009] EWCA Civ 1022, [2010] RPC 7, (2010) 33(1) IPD 33003
Bailii
Trade Marks Directive 89/104, Trade Marks Act 1994
England and Wales
Citing:
See AlsoAnheuser-Busch Inc v Budejovicky Budvar Narodni Podnik; Budejovicky Budvar Narodni Podnik v Anheuser Busch Inc ChD 20-May-1998
It is possible to grant two identical trade marks in respect of beer where either there was no confusion, or an honest concurrent use could justify such double registrations. . .
See AlsoAnheuser-Busch Inc v Budejovicky Bodvar Narodni Podnik; Budejovicky Bodvar Narodni Podnik v Anheuser-Busch CA 7-Feb-2000
The registration of two trade marks (‘Budweiser’) with the identical names was against the Act since it would appear to encourage the very confusion the Act sought to avoid. Nevertheless, where there was genuine honest concurrent use, that use might . .
See AlsoPodnik v Anheuser-Busch Inc CA 29-Oct-2002
. .
See AlsoAnheuser-Busch Inc v Budejovicky Budvar CA 1984
The plaintiff sold the well-known ‘Budweiser’ beer in the US, but it was not generally available in the UK, being sold in American military bases and in a few duty-free shops. However, the beer was widely known throughout the UK because of the . .
CitedGeneral Electric Co v General Electric Co Ltd; GE TM; Re GE Trade Mark HL 1972
Lord Diplock said: ‘The common law of trade marks before 1875
The use by manufacturers of distinctive marks upon goods which they had made is of very ancient origin, but legal recognition of trade marks as a species of incorporeal property was . .
See AlsoAnheuser-Busch v Budejovicky Budvar, narodni podnik ECJ 16-Nov-2004
Agreement establishing the World Trade Organisation – Articles 2(1), 16(1) and 70 of the TRIPs Agreement – Trade marks – Scope of the proprietor’s exclusive right to the trade mark – Alleged use of the sign as a trade name. . .
See AlsoBudejovicky Budvar Narodni Podnik v Anheuser-Busch Inc ChD 19-Feb-2008
. .
CitedTaylors Fashions Ltd v Liverpool Victoria Trustees Co Ltd ChD 1981
The fundamental principle that equity is concerned to prevent unconscionable conduct permeates all the elements of the doctrine of estoppel. In the light of the more recent cases, the principle ‘requires a very much broader approach which is . .
CitedHabib Bank Ltd v Habib Bank AG Zurich CA 1981
A combination of defences based on delay was pleaded in a passing off action objecting to the use of a name which the defendants had been using without objection for many years. A permanent injunction was claimed.
Held: Oliver LJ said as to . .
CitedJohnson v Gore Wood and Co HL 14-Dec-2000
Shareholder May Sue for Additional Personal Losses
A company brought a claim of negligence against its solicitors, and, after that claim was settled, the company’s owner brought a separate claim in respect of the same subject-matter.
Held: It need not be an abuse of the court for a shareholder . .
CitedWilmott v Barber ChD 19-Jun-1880
The lessee of three acres of land agreed in January, 1874, to let one acre to the Plaintiff for the whole of the residue of his term, and he agreed also to sell to the Plaintiff his interest in the whole three acres at any time within five years . .
CitedGerolsteiner Brunnen v Putsch ECJ 7-Jan-2004
There was a conflict between the registered mark Gerri (for inter alia mineral water) and an alleged infringement ‘Kerry Spring’ for Irish mineral water from the Kerry Spring sold by a company called Kerry Spring Water. The referring court held . .
CitedSunrider Corporation (T/A Sunrider International) v Vitasoy International Holdings Ltd ChD 22-Jan-2007
An application had been made to have the trade mark declared invalid. The owner replied saying that the five year period during which a mark might be challenged had expired.
Held: The five year period commenced not from the date when the . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.
Updated: 20 September 2021; Ref: scu.376206

Wilmott v Barber: ChD 19 Jun 1880

The lessee of three acres of land agreed in January, 1874, to let one acre to the Plaintiff for the whole of the residue of his term, and he agreed also to sell to the Plaintiff his interest in the whole three acres at any time within five years from the date of the agreement. The lease contained a covenant by the lessee not to assign the property, or to part with the possession of it or any part of it, without the written consent of the lessor. The Plaintiff was not, in fact, aware of this covenant. He was let into possession of the one acre, and he laid out money upon it, and also upon adjoining property of his own with the view of occupying the two together. The lessor was aware of this expenditure. In October, 1877, the lessee, without the Plaintiff’s knowledge, surrendered the lease to the lessor, in exchange for a new lease for a longer term of the three acres together with other property* The new lease contained a similar covenant by the lessee not to assign, and so on, without license. In November, 1877, the Plaintiff gave the lessee notice of his desire to exercise his option to purchase his interest under the original lease in the three acres. The lessee declined to perform his agreement, on the ground that the lessor refused to give his license to an assignment. The Plaintiff brought the action against the lessee and the lessor, claiming specific performance of the agreement by the lessee, and to compel the lessor to give his license, on the ground, inter alia, that he had acquiesced in the Plaintiff’s expenditure knowing that he was acting in the mistaken belief that the lessee was able to assign the property to him. It appeared that the lessor was not, when the Plaintiff’s expenditure was incurred, aware of the existence of the lessee’s covenant not to assign without license :-
Held: The Court will not compel a Defendant specifically to perform an agreement when the result would be to compel him to commit a breach of a prior agreement with another person. The lessee could not be compelled to perform his agreement, inasmuch as his doing so would involve a breach of his prior covenant not to assign without license, for that, as the Plaintiff was seeking to treat the original lease as still subsisting for one purpose, he must treat the covenant not to assign contained in it as still subsisting :
Held: also, that inasmuch as the lessor was ignorant of his own rights, and there was nothing to shew that he knew that the Plaintiff had been acting in ignorance of his legal rights, the lessor could not be compelled to give his license to assign to the Plaintiff.
The circumstances under which the owner of a legal right will be precluded by his acquiescence from asserting it considered.
Mistake of fact is not the less a ground for relief because the person who has made the mistake had the means of knowledge.
Fry J set out the test of unconscionability: ‘A man is not to be deprived of his legal rights unless he has acted in such a way as would make it fraudulent for him to set up those rights. What, then, are the elements or requisites necessary to constitute fraud of that description. In the first place the plaintiff must have made a mistake as to his legal rights. Secondly, the plaintiff must have expended some money or must have done some act (not necessarily upon the defendant’s land) on the faith of his mistaken belief. Thirdly, the defendant, the possessor of the legal right, must know of the existence of his own right which is inconsistent with the right claimed by the plaintiff. If he does not know of it he is in the same position as the plaintiff, and the doctrine of acquiescence is founded upon conduct with a knowledge of your legal rights. Fourthly, the defendant, the possessor of the legal right, must know of the plaintiff’s mistaken belief of his rights. If he does not, there is nothing which calls upon him to assert his own rights. Lastly, the defendant, the possessor of the legal right, must have encouraged the plaintiff in his expenditure of money or in the other acts which he has done, either directly or by abstaining from asserting his legal right. Where all these elements exist, there is fraud of such a nature as will entitle the court to restrain the possessor of the legal right from exercising it, but, in my judgment, nothing short of this will do.’
Fry J
(1880) 15 Ch D 96, [1880] UKLawRpCh 183
Commonlii
England and Wales
Cited by:
CitedBudejovicky Budvar Narodni Podnik v Anheuser-Busch Inc CA 20-Oct-2009
The parties had long disputed the use of the trade marks ‘Bud’ and ‘Budweiser’ for their beers. The claimant now said that the defendants had made an abusive registration under the 1994 Act, by requesting a declaration that the registration by the . .
CitedSingh v Rainbow Court Townhouses Ltd PC 19-Jul-2018
(Trinidad and Tobago) . .
ExlainedShaw v Applegate CA 1977
There was a covenant against the use of a property as an amusement arcade. Within three years the purchaser had installed amusement machines, but it was not until three years later that the plaintiffs issued proceedings for an injunction and . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.
Updated: 20 September 2021; Ref: scu.377526

Thoday v Thoday: CA 1964

The court discussed the difference between issue estoppel, and action estoppel: ‘The particular type of estoppel relied upon by the husband is estoppel per rem judicatam. This is a generic term which in modern law includes two species. The first species, which I will call ’cause of action estoppel,’ is that which prevents a party to an action from asserting or denying, as against the other party, the existence of a particular cause of action, the non-existence or existence of which has been determined by a court of competent jurisdiction in previous litigation between the same parties. If the cause of action was determined to exist, ie, judgment was given upon it, it is said to be merged in the judgment, or, for those who prefer Latin, transit in rem judicatam. If it was determined not to exist, the unsuccessful plaintiff can no longer assert that it does; he is estopped per rem judicatam. This is simply an application of the rule of public policy expressed in the Latin maxim ‘Nemo debet bis vexari pro una et eadem causa.’ In this application of the maxim ‘causa’ bears its literal Latin meaning. The second species, which I will call ‘issue estoppel’, is an extension of the same rule of public policy. There are many causes of action which can only be established by proving that two or more different conditions are fulfilled. Such causes of action involve as many separate issues between the parties as there are conditions to be fulfilled by the plaintiff in order to establish his cause of action; and there may be cases where the fulfilment of an identical condition is a requirement common to two or more different causes of action. If in litigation upon one such cause of action any of such separate issues as to whether a particular condition has been fulfilled is determined by a court of competent jurisdiction, either upon evidence or upon admission by a party to the litigation, neither party can, in subsequent litigation between one another upon any cause of action which depends upon the fulfilment of the identical condition, assert that the condition was fulfilled if the court in the first litigation determined that it was not, or deny that it was fulfilled if the court in the first litigation determined that it was.’
Diplock LJ
[1964] P 181, [1964] 1 All ER 341
England and Wales
Cited by:
CitedGood Challenger Navegante S A v Metalexportimport SA CA 24-Nov-2003
The claimant sought to enforce an arbitration award made in 1983. Time might otherwise have expired, but the claimants relied on a fax which they said was an acknowledgement of the debt, and also upon a finding in a Romanian court which created an . .
CitedBlackburn Chemicals Ltd v Bim Kemi Ab CA 10-Nov-2004
The parties entered into exclusive cross marketing agreements. The defendant resisted enforcement of the contract saying it was void under European law, being contrary to Article 81. The parties were alleged to have agreed to make cross purchases. . .
CitedHormel Foods Corporation v Antilles Landscape Investments NV ChD 24-Jan-2005
The claimant had alread challenged the validity of the defendant’s registered trade mark, but sought to do so now on grounds which could have been advanced in the earlier case. The claimant owned the trade mark ‘SPAM’ for canned meats, and the . .
CitedMeretz Investments Nv and Another v ACP Ltd and others ChD 30-Jan-2006
The applicant challenged the exercise of a power of sale under a mortgage, saying that the mortgagee’s purposes included purposes not those under the mortgage. The parties had been involved in an attempted development of a penthouse.
Held: The . .
CitedSpecial Effects Ltd v L’Oreal Sa and Another CA 12-Jan-2007
The defendants had opposed the grant of the trade mark which they were now accused of infringing. The claimants said that having failed at the opposition stage, they were now estopped from challenging the validity of the mark.
Held: It was not . .
CitedFraser v HLMAD Limited CA 15-Jun-2006
The claimant had been dismissed as chief executive. He had made a claim in the Employment Tribunal for unfair dismissal, but reserved the right to make further claims. The defendant argued that he was not estopped from pursuing those claims.
CitedCampbell v Leeds United Association Football Misc 3-Apr-2009
The claimant sought damages for psychiatric injury suffered when working for the defendant who replied that the matter had already been litigated in her claims in the Employment Tribunal, and that a cause of action estoppel applied.
Held: The . .
CitedSchellenberg v British Broadcasting Corporation QBD 2000
The claimant had settled defamation actions against the Guardian and the Sunday Times on disadvantageous terms, when it seemed likely that he was about to lose. He then pressed on with this almost identical action against the BBC.
Held: A . .
CitedBank of Scotland v Hussain and Another ChD 5-Nov-2010
The second defendant had, under the undue influence of the first defendant sold him her house at an undervalue. She also asserted non est factum. He then charged it to the claimant. The court was asked which innocent party should prevail. She said . .
CitedCoke-Wallis, Regina (on The Application of) v Institute of Chartered Accountants In England and Wales SC 19-Jan-2011
The appellant chartered accountant had been convicted in Jersey after removing documents from his offices relating to a disputed trust and in breach of an order from his professional institute. The court now considered the relevance and application . .
CitedSarwar v The Royal Bank of Scotland Plc (Rev 1) ChD 27-Jul-2011
The claimant appealed against a finding of indebtedness to the bank. He had said at trial that the bank had been charging interest at 25%. The bank denied this, but after trial it became clear that he had been correct. The bank argued for abuse of . .
CitedVirgin Atlantic Airways Ltd v Zodiac Seats UK Ltd SC 3-Jul-2013
Virgin Atlantic Airways Ltd sought to recover damages exceeding 49,000,000 pounds for the infringement of a European Patent which did not exist in the form said to have been infringed. The Technical Board of Appeal of the European Patent Office had . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.
Updated: 12 September 2021; Ref: scu.188233

Secretary of State for Employment v Globe Elastic Thread Co Ltd: HL 1979

The employee worked for Company A from 1948 to 1970. In 1970 he accepted employment with a related Company B, on the understanding that his employment with A would be treated as continuous. Upon his dismissal by B in 1975 on grounds of redundancy, he claimed a redundancy payment on the basis of continuous service since 1948.
Held: He could only count service with B from 1970 for the purposes of his redundancy entitlement. The reason was that under the statute A and B were not associated employers. Accordingly there was no continuity of service following the change of employer. A personal estoppel cannot extend the statutory jurisdiction of the Indistrial Tribunal or create a jurisdiction which the statute did not in fact confer
Lord Wilberforce said that estoppel did not arise in a situation where there was a contract to retain the benefit of the previous employment because ‘Even if an estoppel may give rise to a contractual obligation, it does not follow, and it would be a strange doctrine, that a contract gives rise to an estoppel.’
Lord Wilberforce
[1980] AC 506, [1979] IRLR 327
England and Wales
Cited by:
CitedAhsan v Carter CA 28-Jul-2005
The claimant sought to assert race discrimination by the Labour Party in not selecting him as a political candidate. The defendant, chairman of the party appealed.
Held: A political party when selecting candidates was not acting as a . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.
Updated: 09 September 2021; Ref: scu.229692

Property and Reversionary Investment Corporation v Templar: CA 1977

A party sought leave to appeal out of time in reliance on an intervening decision of the House of Lords.
Held: A change in the understanding of the law would not suffice in the absence of special circumstances.
[1977] 1 WLR 1223
England and Wales
Cited by:
AppliedArnold v National Westminster Bank Plc HL 1991
Tenants invited the court to construe the terms of a rent review provision in the sub-underlease under which they held premises. The provision had been construed in a sense adverse to them in earlier proceedings before Walton J, but they had been . .
CitedAhsan v Carter CA 28-Jul-2005
The claimant sought to assert race discrimination by the Labour Party in not selecting him as a political candidate. The defendant, chairman of the party appealed.
Held: A political party when selecting candidates was not acting as a . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.
Updated: 09 September 2021; Ref: scu.187658

Re William Porter and Co Ltd: 1937

Simonds J
[1937] 2 All ER 361
England and Wales
Citing:
Approved (Obiter)Moriarty v Regent’s Garage and Engineering Co Ltd KBD 1921
A company director sought payment of his directors fees of andpound;150 per annum where during the course of the year he had ceased to be a director. There was no allegation of impropriety on his part. The company’s articles provided that the . .

Cited by:
CitedFassihim, Liddiardrams, International Ltd, Isograph Ltd v Item Software (UK) Ltd CA 30-Sep-2004
The first defendant (F) had been employed by a company involved in a distribution agreement. He had sought to set up a competing arrangement whilst a director of the claimant, and diverted a contract to his new company.
Held: A company . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.
Updated: 07 September 2021; Ref: scu.215873

St Pancras and Humanist Housing Association Ltd v Leonard: CA 17 Dec 2008

The claimant sought possession of a garage. The defendant claimed adverse possession.
Held: The defendant’s appeal against an order for possession failed. The defendant had attended a meeting where his behaviour had allowed other parties to rely to their detriment on the paper title. The judge had found him estopped from asserting ownership inconsistent with that behaviour and the conclusion was well founded and unappealable.
[2008] EWCA Civ 1442
Bailii
England and Wales
Citing:
CitedWillmott v Barber ChD 19-Jun-1880
In 1869 Barber granted a 99-year lease of three acres of land in east London, subject to a covenant against assignment or sub-letting without consent. In 1874, in breach of covenant, he sub-let one acre on an annual tenancy to Willmott (who owned a . .
CitedArmstrong v Sheppard and Short Ltd CA 1959
The plaintiff had a path at the rear of his property. The defendant constructed a sewer under the path, and asked the plaintiff for permission. He gave it informally, not knowing at the time that he owned the land. The sewer was constructed. Though . .
CitedTaylors Fashions Ltd v Liverpool Victoria Trustees Co Ltd ChD 1981
The fundamental principle that equity is concerned to prevent unconscionable conduct permeates all the elements of the doctrine of estoppel. In the light of the more recent cases, the principle ‘requires a very much broader approach which is . .
CitedYeoman’s Row Management Ltd and Another v Cobbe HL 30-Jul-2008
The parties agreed in principle for the sale of land with potential development value. Considerable sums were spent, and permission achieved, but the owner then sought to renegotiate the deal.
Held: The appeal succeeded in part. The finding . .
CitedCobbe v Yeomans Row Management Ltd and Others ChD 25-Feb-2005
Principles for Proprietary Estoppel
A developer claimed to have agreed that upon obtaining necessary planning permissions for land belonging to the respondents, he would purchase the land at a price reflecting its new value. The defendant denied that any legally enforceable agreement . .
CitedHabib Bank Ltd v Habib Bank AG Zurich CA 1981
A combination of defences based on delay was pleaded in a passing off action objecting to the use of a name which the defendants had been using without objection for many years. A permanent injunction was claimed.
Held: Oliver LJ said as to . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.
Updated: 07 September 2021; Ref: scu.278822

Taylor v Needham: CCP 10 Feb 1810

If the Plaintiff in covenant assigns as a breach, that the Defendant did not repair, a plea that the Defendant did not break his covenant is bad on special demurrer. Although the declaration concludes by averring that so the defendant hath broken his covenant. But it would be good after verdict. An assignee of a lease by indenture is estopped by the deed which estops his assignor. Therefore he cannot plead non dimisit. But if an estate be created by deed poll, ne lessa, ne grants, ne charges, ne enfeoffa, 116 dona, and co. are good pleas for a stranger to the deed.
Mansfield CJ said: ‘Then the question comes, whether the assignee of the lease may be allowed to controvert the title of the lessor, when the lessee, under whom he derives, could not controvert the title of the lessor; so that the assignee should have a better right than he from whom he derives it. Exclusive of all the dicta, it would be a very odd thing in the law of any country, if A could take, by any form of conveyance, a greater or better right than he had who conveys it to him; it would be contrary to all principle. But it does not rest merely on the general principle; for if you look into all the books upon estoppel, you find it laid down, that parties and privies are estopped, and he who takes an estate under a deed, is privy in estate, and therefore never can be in a better situation than he from whom he takes it.’
Mansfield CJ
[1810] EWHC CP J104, 127 ER 1084, (1810) 2 Taunt 278, [1810] EngR 119, (1810) 127 ER 1084
Bailii, Commonlii
England and Wales
Cited by:
CitedAlan Wibberley Building Ltd v Insley CA 12-Nov-1997
Where adjoining fields are separated by a hedge and a ditch, who owns the ditch?
Held: The old presumption as to the location of a boundary based on the layout of hedges and ditches is irrelevant where the conveyance was by reference to an OS . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.
Updated: 07 September 2021; Ref: scu.270752

Gonthier and Another v Orange Contract Scaffolding Ltd: CA 25 Jun 2003

The question of a proprietary estoppel as between landlord and tenant arose. An agreement had been reached subject to contract for the grant of a lease, with an option to purchase. The tenant was allowed into possession before the documentation was prepared, and to commece works of repair. Eventually the proposed lease did not include an option. In resisting a later action for possession, the prospective tenant produced inflated invoices. The landowner resisted the claim for an estoppel saying that the tenant, seeking an equitable remedy, had not come to court with clean hands.
Held: It was the proposed tenant’s solicitors who themselves made the correspondence subject to contract.
Lord Justice Waller Lord Justice Kay And Mr Justice Lindsay
[2003] EWCA Civ 873
Bailii
England and Wales
Citing:
CitedRamsden v Dyson HL 1866
The Vice-Chancellor had held that two tenants of Sir John Ramsden, the owner of a large estate near Huddersfield, were entitled to long leases of plots on the estate. They ostensibly held the plots as tenants at will only, but they had spent their . .
CitedWillmott v Barber ChD 19-Jun-1880
In 1869 Barber granted a 99-year lease of three acres of land in east London, subject to a covenant against assignment or sub-letting without consent. In 1874, in breach of covenant, he sub-let one acre on an annual tenancy to Willmott (who owned a . .
CitedTaylors Fashions Ltd v Liverpool Victoria Trustees Co Ltd ChD 1981
The fundamental principle that equity is concerned to prevent unconscionable conduct permeates all the elements of the doctrine of estoppel. In the light of the more recent cases, the principle ‘requires a very much broader approach which is . .
CitedAttorney General of Hong Kong v Humphreys Estate (Queen’s Gardens) Ltd PC 1987
An agreement in principle was marked ‘subject to contract’. The Government would acquire some flats owned the plaintiff Group of companies in return for the Government granting, inter alia, a lease to the Group of some Crown lands. The Government . .
CitedGillett v Holt and Another CA 23-Mar-2000
Repeated Assurances Created Equitable Estoppel
Repeated assurances, given over years, that the claimant would acquire an interest in property on the death of the person giving the re-assurance, and upon which the claimant relied to his detriment, could found a claim of equitable estoppel. The . .
CitedSingh v Singh 1985
A husband resisted his former wife’s claim under the section against his brother, her brother-in-law. He asserted, with a view to deceiving both his wife and the Court, that his brother, who held the fee of a house, did not hold any share . .
CitedWillis and Son v Willis CA 1986
The appellants had resisted giving a flat, claiming a promissory estoppel based on the respondents having more than once said that the appellants could live in the premises rent free for as long as they needed. The appellants said that some pounds . .
CitedSherbrooke v Dipple 1980
Parties to a conveyancing context can get rid of the qualification ‘subject to contract’ only if either they both expressly agree that it should be expunged or if such an agreement can be necessarily implied. . .
CitedCohen v Nessdale Ltd CA 1982
Once negotiations are begun ‘subject to contract’, that label governs all subsequent communications between the parties unless the label is expunged by express agreement or by necessary implication. . .
CitedDerby and Co Ltd v ITC Pension Trust Ltd 1977
The court considered a party resisting a claim to an estoppel: ‘where parties negotiate on a basis ‘subject to contract’ everybody knows there is a risk that, at the end of the day, either side may back out of negotiations, up to the point where . .
CitedEdwin Shirley Productions Ltd v Workspace Management Ltd 2001
So familiar is the use of the phrase ‘subject to contract’ in the conveyancing context that its effect is, without proof, to be taken to be known to the parties. . .
CitedRegalian Properties Plc and Another v London Docklands Development Corporation ChD 25-Jan-1995
Negotiations intended to result in a contract were expressly on the basis that each party was free to withdraw from the negotiations at any time, the costs of a party in preparing for the intended contract were incurred at its own risk and it was . .
CitedSalvation Army Trustee Co Ltd v West Yorkshire Metropolitan County Council 1980
Threatened with a road widening, the plaintiffs left their old property, and began to develop their new one, again, on land owned by the respondent. In practice it was negotiated as an exchange of properties. The negotiations were held ‘without . .
CitedIsland Holdings Ltd v Birchington Engineering Co Ltd 7-Jul-1981
Two prospectively separate purchasers in a later ‘subject to contract’ arrangement between them had replaced their earlier concluded agreement as to how a property, if acquired, would be dealt with.
Held: Effect was to be given to the . .
CitedBanner Homes Group Plc v Luff Developments and Another CA 10-Feb-2000
banner_luffCA2000
Competing building companies agreed not to bid against each other for the purchase of land. One proceeded and the other asserted that the land was then held on trust for the two parties as a joint venture.
Held: Although there was no formal . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.
Updated: 07 September 2021; Ref: scu.184068

Republic of India and Others v India Steamship Co Ltd; The Indian Endurance and The Indian Grace: CA 1992

Munitions were consigned to Cochin on board the defendants’ vessel. A fire occurred, and part was jettisoned, the remainder being damaged. The cargo owners first claimed damages in India for short delivery under the bills of lading for the jettisoned cargo. The Indian judge held that the defendants were liable for the value of the undelivered cargo, about pounds 6,000. The plaintiffs then sued in rem in London for pounds 2.6 million for the total loss of the cargo. The Indian claim pleaded short delivery of the cargo delivered at Cochin, viz. 51 shells (and a small item described as ‘charge green bag’). The claim was advanced under one of the two bills of lading under which the consignment was shipped. In the plaint, it was alleged that the ship-owners had been guilty of negligence while the cargo was in transit in the vessel, which was taken to refer to a breach of their duty as bailees (carriers for reward). It was either common ground (or found by the Indian judge) that the contract incorporated the Hague Rules. The claim in the English action was in the ordinary form for a damage to cargo claim, alleging against the ship-owners (1) breach of contract and/or duty as carrier by sea for reward to deliver the goods in like good order and condition as when shipped; (2) negligence, in breach of duty as carriers and/or as bailees for reward; and (3) breach of their obligations under article III(1) and (2) of the Hague-Visby Rules, which apply to the contracts contained in or evidenced by the two bills of lading under which the goods were shipped. One issue in the Court of Appeal was the relevance of Indian law to the question of cause of action estoppel. Leggatt LJ: ‘For my part, I see nothing in the suggestion that evidence of Indian law is required in order to establish that the cause of action sued on in India was the same as that relied on here. I accept Mr. Gruder’s submission that it is a matter for English law to determine whether the causes of action were the same; there is no evidence or argument that they were not and, until the contrary is proved, Indian law must be presumed to be the same as English law. With the effect of the Indian judgment in India we are not concerned.’
Leggatt LJ
[1992] 1 Lloyd’s Rep 124
England and Wales
Cited by:
Appeal fromRepublic of India and Others v India Steamship Co Ltd (‘The Indian Endurance and The Indian Grace’) (No 1) HL 29-Mar-1993
Munitions were being carried to Cochin on board the defendants’ vessel. Some was jettisoned in a fire and the remainder was damaged. The cargo owners sought damages in India for short delivery under the bills of lading, as to the jettisoned cargo . .
CitedBarrett v Universal-Island Records Ltd and others ChD 15-May-2006
The claimant was entitled to share in the copyright royalties of Bob Marley and the Wailers, and claimed payment from the defendants. The defendants said that the matters had already been settled and that the claim was an abuse of process, and also . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.
Updated: 03 September 2021; Ref: scu.251635

The Indian Endurance: HL 1986

The House considered how an estoppel by convention arose: ‘It is settled that an estoppel by convention may arise where parties to a transaction act on an assumed state of facts or law, the assumption being either shared by them both or made by one and acquiesced in by the other. The effect of an estoppel by convention is to preclude a party from denying the assumed facts or law if it would be unjust to allow him to go back on the assumption: K. Lokumal and Sons (London) Ltd. v. Lotte Shipping Co. Pte. Ltd. [1985] 2 Lloyd’s Rep. 28; Norwegian American Cruises A/S v. Paul Mundy Ltd. [1988] 2 Lloyd’s Rep. 343; Treitel, The Law of Contract, 9th ed. (1995), pp. 112-113. It is not enough that each of the two parties acts on an assumption not communicated to the other. But it was rightly accepted by counsel for both parties that a concluded agreement is not a requirement for an estoppel by convention.’
Orse: The Indian Grace (No 2)
Lord Steyn
[1987] AC 878
England and Wales
Cited by:
CitedSmithkline Beecham Plc and others v Apotex Europe Ltd and others PatC 26-Jul-2005
Application was made to join in further parties to support a cross undertaking on being made subject to interim injunctions.
Held: On orders other than asset freezing orders it was not open to the court to impose cross-undertakings against . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.
Updated: 01 September 2021; Ref: scu.231215

Grundy v Ottey: CA 31 Jul 2003

The deceased left his estate within a discretionary trust. The claimant sought to assert an interest in it, claiming an estoppel and, under the 1975 Act, as his partner. They had lived together for four years. She had been dependent upon him financially, and had suffered violence.
Held: Once a proprietary estoppel has been established, the remedy should be no more than is necessary to protect against unconscionable conduct. The judge was entitled to find the establishment of the estoppel, and that no claim was available under the 1975 Act.
[2003] EWCA Civ 1176, [2003] WTLR 1253
Bailii
Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975
England and Wales
Citing:
CitedGillett v Holt and Another CA 23-Mar-2000
Repeated Assurances Created Equitable Estoppel
Repeated assurances, given over years, that the claimant would acquire an interest in property on the death of the person giving the re-assurance, and upon which the claimant relied to his detriment, could found a claim of equitable estoppel. The . .
CitedJennings v Rice, Wilson, Marsh, Norris, Norris, and Reed CA 22-Feb-2002
The claimant asserted a proprietary estoppel against the respondents. He had worked for the deceased over many years, for little payment, and doing more and more for her. Though he still worked full time at first, he came to spend nights at the . .
CitedWayling v Jones CA 2-Aug-1993
The plaintiff and defendant were in a homosexual relationship. The plaintiff worked for the defendant for nominal expenses against his repeated promise to leave the business to him in his will. A will was made to that effect, but the defendant sold . .
CitedEves v Eves CA 28-Apr-1975
The couple were unmarried. The female partner had been led by the male partner to believe, when they set up home together, that the property would belong to them jointly. He had had told her that the only reason why the property was to be acquired . .
CitedIn re Basham dec’d; Basham v Basham 1986
The claimant and her husband had helped her mother and her stepfather throughout the claimant’s adult life. She received no remuneration but understood that she would inherit her stepfather’s property when he died. After her mother’s death and until . .

Cited by:
CitedYeoman’s Row Management Ltd and Another v Cobbe HL 30-Jul-2008
The parties agreed in principle for the sale of land with potential development value. Considerable sums were spent, and permission achieved, but the owner then sought to renegotiate the deal.
Held: The appeal succeeded in part. The finding . .
CitedThorner v Major and others CA 2-Jul-2008
The deceased had written a will, revoked it but then not made another. The claimant had worked for the deceased understanding that property would be left to him, and now claimed that the estate property was held under a trust for him.
Held: . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.
Updated: 29 August 2021; Ref: scu.186398

Tinkler v Revenue and Customs: SC 30 Jul 2021

Whether the Respondent is estopped by convention from denying that HMRC had opened a valid enquiry when HMRC had sent the notice to the wrong address and the Respondent’s accountants had interacted with HMRC on the basis an enquiry had been opened.
Each type of estoppel has its own requirements, albeit they can be seen to be related.
Lord Burrows described certain principles of estoppel by convention: ‘It may be helpful if I explain in my own words the important ideas that lie behind the first three principles of Benchdollar. Those ideas are as follows. The person raising the estoppel (who I shall refer to as ‘C’) must know that the person against whom the estoppel is raised (who I shall refer to as ‘D’) shares the common assumption and must be strengthened, or influenced, in its reliance on that common assumption by that knowledge; and D must (objectively) intend, or expect, that that will be the effect on C of its conduct crossing the line so that one can say that D has assumed some element of responsibility for C’s reliance on the common assumption.’
Lord Hodge, Deputy President, Lord Briggs, Lady Arden, Lord Burrows, Lady Rose
[2021] UKSC 39, [2021] WLR(D) 429
Bailii, Bailii Summary, Bailii Issues and Facts, WLRD
England and Wales
Citing:
Appeal fromTinkler v Revenue and Customs CA 31-Jul-2019
Validity of notice of enquiry . .
Dictum ApprovedHM Revenue and Customs v Benchdollar Ltd and Others ChD 11-Jun-2009
Limitation and estoppel in claims for arrears of national insurance contributions
Briggs J said: ‘In my judgment, the principles applicable to the assertion of an estoppel by convention arising out of non-contractual dealings . . are as . .

Cited by:
CitedJones and Another v Lydon and Others ChD 23-Aug-2021
No Estoppels Established to Override Majority
The parties were former members of a band, the Sex Pistols. They disputed the continued duty to accept the decision of the majority of its members as set out in a Band Membership Agreement. Mr Lydon asserted that over the years the obligation had . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.
Updated: 28 August 2021; Ref: scu.666313

Harvey v Dunbar Assets Plc: CA 13 Feb 2017

This appeal raises an issue of principle in the law of bankruptcy on which there is no previous authority directly in point. If:
(a) a debtor’s application to set aside a statutory demand (‘SD1’) is dismissed on the merits, by application of the familiar test that the debtor has no reasonable prospect of establishing a defence or cross claim which would either extinguish the debt or reduce it below the minimum bankruptcy level of andpound;750; but
(b) SD1 is subsequently set aside on appeal, on an unrelated ground;
(c) the unrelated ground is then disposed of in the creditor’s favour, in other proceedings to which the debtor is not a party; and
(d) the creditor then serves a second statutory demand (‘SD2’) on the debtor, relying on precisely the same debt as he did when he served SD1:
Is it open to the debtor to apply to set aside SD2 on the same grounds which he unsuccessfully raised in opposition to SD1, and which he never sought to uphold on the appeal from SD1?
Held: The debtor’s appeal failed. He could show no proper prospect of defending the claim under the guarantee he had signed.
The court set out the principles of promissory estoppel: ‘Where, by his words or conduct one party to a transaction, (A) freely makes to the other (B) a clear and unequivocal promise or assurance that he or she will not enforce his or her strict legal rights, and that promise or assurance is intended to affect the legal relations between them (whether contractual or otherwise) or was reasonably understood by B to have that effect, and, before it is withdrawn, B acts upon it, altering his or her position so that it would be inequitable to permit the first party to withdraw the promise, the party making the promise or assurance will not be permitted to act inconsistently with it. B must also show that the promise was intended to be binding in the sense that (judged on an objective basis) it was intended to affect the legal relationships between the parties and A either knew or could have reasonably foreseen that B would act on it. Yet B’s conduct need not derive its origins solely from A’s encouragement or representation. The principal issue is whether A’s representation had a sufficiently material influence on B’s conduct to make it inequitable for A to depart from it.’
Gross, Henderson LJJ, Sir Stephen Tomlinson
[2017] EWCA Civ 60
Bailii
England and Wales
Citing:
CitedBarnes v Whitehead ChD 2004
Where a party seeks to run an argument which might have been made earlier, it will inquire why those arguments were not run at the time when they could and should have been run. However, a failure to apply to set aside the statutory demand does not . .
Appeal fromHarvey v Dunbar Assets Plc ChD 26-Nov-2015
Renewed application by Mr Harvey for permission to appeal the dismissal of his application to set aside a statutory demand served on him by the respondent, Dunbar Assets plc . .

Cited by:
CitedJones and Another v Lydon and Others ChD 23-Aug-2021
No Estoppels Established to Override Majority
The parties were former members of a band, the Sex Pistols. They disputed the continued duty to accept the decision of the majority of its members as set out in a Band Membership Agreement. Mr Lydon asserted that over the years the obligation had . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.
Updated: 28 August 2021; Ref: scu.574296

Republic of India and Another v India Steamship Co Ltd (Indian Endurance and Indian Grace) (No 2): HL 23 Oct 1997

When a action in rem against a ship was in fact parallel to an action in personam begun in India and awaiting a decision; an action was not to be allowed here.
Lord Steyn: ‘It is settled that an estoppel by convention may arise where parties to a transaction act on an assumed state of facts or law, the assumption being shared by them both or made by one and acquiesced in by the other . . It is not enough that each of the parties acts on an assumption not communicated to the other. But it was rightly accepted by counsel for both parties that a concluded agreement is not a requirement for an estoppel by convention.’
Lord Steyn
Gazette 12-Nov-1997, Times 23-Oct-1997, [1997] UKHL 40, [1997] 4 All ER 380, [1997] 3 WLR 818, [1998] AC 878
House of Lords, Bailii
Civil Jurisdiction and Judgments Act 1982
England and Wales
Citing:
Appeal fromRepublic of India v India Steamship Co Ltd (Indian Endurance and Grace (No 2) CA 1-May-1996
An action against ship in rem prevents a personal action against the owner; there would be a risk of double jeopardy. . .

Cited by:
CitedAce Insurance Sa-Nv v Surendranath Seechurn CA 6-Feb-2002
The claimant sought payment under an insurance policy for his permanent disability. The judge had found that the defendant insurers had indicated a readiness to continue negotiations beyond the limitation period, and that they would apply for a stay . .
CitedSmithkline Beecham Plc and others v Apotex Europe Ltd and others PatC 26-Jul-2005
Application was made to join in further parties to support a cross undertaking on being made subject to interim injunctions.
Held: On orders other than asset freezing orders it was not open to the court to impose cross-undertakings against . .
CitedSmithkline Beecham Plc Glaxosmithkline UK Ltd and Another v Apotex Europe Ltd and others (No 2) CA 23-May-2006
The parties to the action had given cross undertakings to support the grant of an interim injunction. A third party subsequently applied to be joined, and now sought to take advantage of the cross undertakings to claim the losses incurred through . .
CitedScottish and Newcastle Plc v Lancashire Mortgage Corporation Ltd CA 5-Jul-2007
The parties each had a charge over a property, and now disputed which had priority. The brewery appealed an order for rectification of the registers to reverse priority on the basis of an estoppel. The charge in their favour had been registered . .
CitedJones and Another v Lydon and Others ChD 23-Aug-2021
No Estoppels Established to Override Majority
The parties were former members of a band, the Sex Pistols. They disputed the continued duty to accept the decision of the majority of its members as set out in a Band Membership Agreement. Mr Lydon asserted that over the years the obligation had . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.
Updated: 28 August 2021; Ref: scu.88739

Liberty Insurance Pte Ltd and Another v Argo Systems Fze: CA 15 Dec 2011

‘Saying nothing and ‘standing by’, ie. doing nothing, are, to my mind, equivocal actions. This court has stated that, in the absence of special circumstances, silence and inaction are, when objectively considered, equivocal and cannot, of themselves, constitute an unequivocal representation as to whether a person will or will not rely on a particular legal right in the future’
Lord Justice Aikens
[2011] EWCA Civ 1572
Bailii
England and Wales
Citing:
Appeal fromArgo Systems FZE v Liberty Insurance (PTE) and Another ComC 21-Feb-2011
. .

Cited by:
CitedJones and Another v Lydon and Others ChD 23-Aug-2021
No Estoppels Established to Override Majority
The parties were former members of a band, the Sex Pistols. They disputed the continued duty to accept the decision of the majority of its members as set out in a Band Membership Agreement. Mr Lydon asserted that over the years the obligation had . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.
Updated: 28 August 2021; Ref: scu.450051

HM Revenue and Customs v Benchdollar Ltd and Others: ChD 11 Jun 2009

Limitation and estoppel in claims for arrears of national insurance contributions
Briggs J said: ‘In my judgment, the principles applicable to the assertion of an estoppel by convention arising out of non-contractual dealings . . are as follows. (i) It is not enough that the common assumption upon which the estoppel is based is merely understood by the parties in the same way. It must be expressly shared between them. (ii) The expression of the common assumption by the party alleged to be estopped must be such that he may properly be said to have assumed some element of responsibility for it, in the sense of conveying to the other party an understanding that he expected the other party to rely upon it. (iii) The person alleging the estoppel must in fact have relied upon the common assumption, to a sufficient extent, rather than merely upon his own independent view of the matter. (iv) That reliance must have occurred in connection with some subsequent mutual dealing between the parties. (v) Some detriment must thereby have been suffered by the person alleging the estoppel, or benefit thereby have been conferred upon the person alleged to be estopped, sufficient to make it unjust or unconscionable for the latter to assert the true legal (or factual) position.’
Briggs J
[2009] EWHC 1310 (Ch), [2009] STI 2058, [2010] 1 All ER 174, 79 TC 668, [2009] STC 2342
Bailii
England and Wales
Cited by:
Dictum ApprovedTinkler v Revenue and Customs SC 30-Jul-2021
Whether the Respondent is estopped by convention from denying that HMRC had opened a valid enquiry when HMRC had sent the notice to the wrong address and the Respondent’s accountants had interacted with HMRC on the basis an enquiry had been . .
CitedJones and Another v Lydon and Others ChD 23-Aug-2021
No Estoppels Established to Override Majority
The parties were former members of a band, the Sex Pistols. They disputed the continued duty to accept the decision of the majority of its members as set out in a Band Membership Agreement. Mr Lydon asserted that over the years the obligation had . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.
Updated: 28 August 2021; Ref: scu.346867

Hiscox v Outhwaite (No 1): HL 29 Jul 1991

An arbitration award is perfected in the place where the arbitrator signs it, irrespective of where the arbitration to place. If the award is signed in a country party to the 1958 convention, being and forcible as a conventional Ward under the operation act 1975, the English Court can nevertheless exercise it’s supervisory jurisdiction to hear an appeal from the award if it was made under English law. Lord Oliver said that: ‘A document is made when and where it is perfected. An award is perfected when it is signed.
The alternative submission is that an award is ‘made’ when the arbitrator becomes functus officio and it is urged in the instant case that Mr. MacCrindle did not become functus officio until the parties were invited by the clerk of his chambers in London to take up the award. Up to that point of time, it is submitted, the arbitrator could have altered or withdrawn his award. Authority is of little assistance, but in so far as it exists it seems to me to be against the respondent’s proposition.
An estoppel may not have permanent effect as it will cease once the common assumption is revealed to be erroneous. In this case the shared assumption had been communicated by an exchange of letters between the parties.
Lord Donaldson, Lord Oliver
[1992] 1 AC 562, Times, 29 July 1991, [1991] 3 All ER 124, [1991] 2 Lloyds Rep 1
England and Wales
Citing:
Appeal fromHiscox v Outhwaite CA 1991
. .
CitedBrooke v Mitchell 1840
Under a court order which provided for an arbitration, the award of the umpire was to be made and published, ‘in writing, ready to be delivered to the parties . . ‘ The award was executed by the umpire in the presence of two witnesses to whom its . .
At first instanceHiscox v Outhwaite (No 3) ChD 1991
A Lloyd’s syndicate’s whole account stop loss reinsurance was on terms which were agreed to be the equivalent of a follow the settlements clause. The question was whether the reinsurer was liable where the insurers, acting in a proper and . .
ApprovedHamel-Smith v Pycroft and Jetsave Ltd 5-Feb-1987
Peter Gibson J sad: ‘Thus the court is not so rigid and inflexible as to insist on the parties being held to an assumed and incorrect state of fact or law when there is no injustice in allowing a party to resile therefrom (see, for example, Multon . .

Cited by:
CitedJones and Another v Lydon and Others ChD 23-Aug-2021
No Estoppels Established to Override Majority
The parties were former members of a band, the Sex Pistols. They disputed the continued duty to accept the decision of the majority of its members as set out in a Band Membership Agreement. Mr Lydon asserted that over the years the obligation had . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.
Updated: 28 August 2021; Ref: scu.667374

Spliethoff’s Bevrachtingskantoor Bv v Bank of China Ltd: ComC 17 Apr 2015

Claims under refund guarantees
Carr J DBE said: ‘The legal requirements of an estoppel by representation of fact are well known: (i) a representation which is in law deemed a representation of fact, (ii) that the precise representation was in fact made, (iii) that the later position taken contradicts in substance the original representation, (iv) that the original representation was of a nature to induce and was made with the intention and result of inducing the party raising the estoppel to alter his position on the faith of it and to his detriment, and (v) that the original representation was made by the party sought to be estopped and was made to the party setting up the estoppels (see for example Spencer Bower: The Law Relating to Estoppel by Representation (4th Ed 2004 at paragraph 1.2.3). The representation must be clear or unequivocal, or precise and unambiguous (see Chitty: Contracts (31st Ed) (‘Chitty’) at paragraph 3-090).’
Carr J DBE
[2015] EWHC 999 (Comm), [2016] 1 All ER (Comm) 1034
Bailii
England and Wales
Cited by:
CitedJones and Another v Lydon and Others ChD 23-Aug-2021
No Estoppels Established to Override Majority
The parties were former members of a band, the Sex Pistols. They disputed the continued duty to accept the decision of the majority of its members as set out in a Band Membership Agreement. Mr Lydon asserted that over the years the obligation had . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.
Updated: 28 August 2021; Ref: scu.545602

Hamel-Smith v Pycroft and Jetsave Ltd: 5 Feb 1987

Peter Gibson J sad: ‘Thus the court is not so rigid and inflexible as to insist on the parties being held to an assumed and incorrect state of fact or law when there is no injustice in allowing a party to resile therefrom (see, for example, Multon v. Cordell (1988) 277 Estates Gazette 198). Further, if the estoppel applies it will do so only ‘for the period of time and to the extent required by the equity which the estoppel has raised’ (per Ralph Gibson LJ in Troop v. Gibson at p.1144). Thus, once a common assumption is revealed to be erroneous the estoppel would not apply to future dealings between the parties (per Purchas LJ in the same case at p.1144).’
Peter Gibson J
Unreported Feb 5th 1987
England and Wales
Cited by:
ApprovedHiscox v Outhwaite (No 1) HL 29-Jul-1991
An arbitration award is perfected in the place where the arbitrator signs it, irrespective of where the arbitration to place. If the award is signed in a country party to the 1958 convention, being and forcible as a conventional Ward under the . .
CitedJones and Another v Lydon and Others ChD 23-Aug-2021
No Estoppels Established to Override Majority
The parties were former members of a band, the Sex Pistols. They disputed the continued duty to accept the decision of the majority of its members as set out in a Band Membership Agreement. Mr Lydon asserted that over the years the obligation had . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.
Updated: 28 August 2021; Ref: scu.667377

Mardorf Peach and Co Ltd v Attica Sea Carriers Corporation of Liberia (The Laconia): 1977

A right of withdrawal had been granted to a shipowner under a time charterparty if the charterer failed to make a punctual monthly payment of hire.
Held: If the monthly hire had not been punctually paid, the right of withdrawal remained even after the hire had been paid. The right to withdraw only ceased to exist, if it had been in some way waived, though the shipowner must exercise his right to withdraw the ship ‘within a reasonable time after default. Here, although the bank was an agent of the alleged waiving party, it did not have sufficient authority to waive a right of the principal.
The delay necessary in order to amount to a waiver will depend upon the terms of the contract in question and all the circumstances of the case.
If the person said to have waived the breach lacked the actual or ostensible authority to waive the right or rights concerned there will be no waiver.
Lord Wilberforce said that: ‘Although the word ‘waiver’, like ‘estoppel’, covers a variety of situations different in their legal nature, and tends to be indiscriminately used by the courts as a means of relieving parties from bargains or the consequences of bargains which are thought to be harsh or deserving of relief, in the present context what is relied on is clear enough. The charterers had failed to make a punctual payment but it was open to the owners to accept a late payment as if it were punctual, with the consequence that they could not thereafter rely on the default as entitling them to withdraw. All that is needed to establish waiver, in this sense, of the committed breach of contract, is evidence, clear and unequivocal, that such acceptance has taken place.’
Lord Wilberforce
[1977] AC 850, [1977] 1 Lloyds Rep 315
England and Wales
Cited by:
DistinguishedMcGahon v Crest Nicholson Regeneration Ltd CA 21-Jul-2010
The claimants contracted to purchase an apartment ‘off-plan’. The contract was conditional on the grant of a head lease. Notice to complete was served by the developers did not disclose that the head lease had not been granted until after the date . .
CitedJohn Lewis Properties PLC v Viscount Chelsea ChD 1993
Three Leases of the Peter Jones site to T’s predecessor in 1934 contained covenants by T to redevelop the site in two phases, the second of which related to the MackMurdo and Simon’s Street buildings and was to be completed by December 25 1987. In . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.
Updated: 28 July 2021; Ref: scu.421000

Actionstrength Limited v International Glass Engineering In Gl En SpA and others: HL 3 Apr 2003

Actionstrength agreed with Inglen to provide construction staff to build a factory for St-Gobain. Inglen failed to pay. Actionstrength claimed against for the amount due. Inglen went into liquidation. The claim was now against St-Gobain. The claim was based on an alleged oral guarantee. When the defendant pleaded the Statute of Frauds, the claimant alleged an estoppel, saying the defendant had urged it to continue to supply workers.
Held: Some recognisable structural framework must be established before recourse could be had to the underlying idea of unconscionable conduct. It needed to be shown that Actionstrength assumed that St-Gobain would honour the guarantee; that that assumption was induced or encouraged by St-Gobain; and that Actionstrength relied on that assumption. They had not established all these elements. These factors could not all be found in the pleadings. The only assurance given to Actionstrength was the promise itself. In order to be estopped from invoking the statute there must be something more, such as some additional encouragement, inducement or assurance. In addition to the promise there must be some influence exerted by St-Gobain on Actionstrength to lead it to assume that the promise would be honoured. However there was no suggestion made that St-Gobain said or did anything to lead Actionstrength to assume that St-Gobain would not stand on its rights.
The purpose of the Statute was, said Lord Hoffmann: ‘precisely to avoid the need to decide which side was telling the truth about whether or not an oral promise had been made and exactly what had been promised.’ and ‘It is quite true . . that the system of civil procedure in 1677 was not very well adapted to discovering the truth. For one thing, the parties to the action were not competent witnesses. But the question of whether the Act should be preserved in its application to guarantees was considered in 1953 by the Law Reform Committee (First Report, Statute of Frauds and Section 4 of the Sale of Goods Act 1893 (Cmd 8809)) and the recommendation of a very strong committee was to keep it.’
Lord Bingham said that section 4 was enacted ‘to address a mischief facilitated, it seems, by the procedural deficiencies of the day . . the calling of perjured evidence to prove spurious agreements said to have been made orally. The solution applied to the five classes of contract specified in section 4 was to require, as a condition of enforceability, some written memorandum or note of the agreement signed by the party to be charged under the agreement or his authorised agent’
Lord Bingham of Cornhill, Lord Woolf, Lord Hoffmann, Lord Clyde, Lord Walker of Gestingthorpe
[2003] UKHL 17, Times 04-Apr-2003, [2003] 2 AC 541, [2003] 2 WLR 1060, [2003] 1 CLC 1003, [2003] 2 All ER (Comm) 331, [2003] 2 All ER 615, [2003] BLR 207, 88 Con LR 208
House of Lords, Bailii
Statute of Frauds 1677 4
England and Wales
Citing:
Appeal fromActionstrength Limited v International Glass Engineering, In Gl En SPA, Saint-Gobain Glass UK Limited CA 10-Oct-2001
The claimant sought payment for works undertaken. They had been given a promise that in return for not withdrawing their workforce from the site, the second defendants would redirect payments due to the first defendant to the claimant. When it came . .
CitedSteadman v Steadman HL 1976
A mere payment of a sum of money might amount to an act of part performance, as might the act of a purchaser instructing solicitors to prepare and submit a draft conveyance or transfer, so as to leave asituation capable of enforcement in equity. . .
CitedMaddison v Alderson HL 1883
The requirement of the doctrine of part performance is that the acts of part performance relied upon must be ‘referable’ to the contract sued on. The principle underlying the doctrine of part performance was expressed by Lord Selborne: ‘In a suit . .
CitedShah v Shah CA 10-Apr-2001
The court was asked as to the enforceability of a document under the terms of which the defendants were to make a payment of pounds 1.5 million to the claimant. The document was described as a deed and provided for each defendant to sign in the . .
CitedKok Hoong v Leong Cheong Kweng Mines Ltd PC 1964
A clear public policy underlying a statute (for instance, the need to protect vulnerable persons dealing with moneylenders or landlords) prevents an estoppel arising: ‘To ask whether the law that confronts the estoppel can be seen to represent a . .
CitedBank of Scotland v Wright ChD 1991
A director of two companies (one a subsidiary of the other) had given the bank a written guarantee of the liability of the holding company (only); but under an ‘interavailable’ facility backed by cross-guarantees (by the companies) the holding . .
CitedTaylors Fashions Ltd v Liverpool Victoria Trustees Co Ltd ChD 1981
The fundamental principle that equity is concerned to prevent unconscionable conduct permeates all the elements of the doctrine of estoppel. In the light of the more recent cases, the principle ‘requires a very much broader approach which is . .

Cited by:
CitedGolden Ocean Group Ltd v Salgaocar Mining Industries Pvt Ltd and Another ComC 21-Jan-2011
The defendants sought to set aside orders allowing the claimants to serve proceedings alleging repudiation of a charterparty in turn allowing a claim against the defendants under a guarantee. The defendant said the guarantee was unenforceable under . .
CitedGolden Ocean Group Ltd v Salgaocar Mining Industries Pvt Ltd and Another CA 9-Mar-2012
The court was asked ‘whether a contract of guarantee is enforceable where contained not in a single document signed by the guarantor but in a series of documents duly authenticated by the signature of the guarantor. It is common in commercial . .
CitedRock Advertising Ltd v MWB Business Exchange Centres Ltd SC 16-May-2018
The parties disputed whether a contract (licence to occupy an office) had been varied by an oral agreement, where the terms prohibited such.
Held: The ‘no oral variation’ clause applied. Such clauses were in common commercial use and served a . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.
Updated: 24 July 2021; Ref: scu.180415

Freeman And Another, Assignees of William Broadbent v Cooke: 1 Jul 1848

Where a party creates a belief in another’s mind, and causes the other to act upon that belief, he will not in subsequent court proceedings be heard to deny that belief: ‘a party who negigently of culpably stands by and allows another to contract on the faith of a fact which he can contradict, cannot afterwards dispoute that fact in an action against the party who he has himself assisted in deceiving.’
(1848) 2 Exch 554, 6 Dow and L 187, [1843-60] All ER Rep 185, [1848] EngR 687, (1848) 154 ER 652
Commonlii
England and Wales
Cited by:
AppliedSmith v Hughes QBD 1871
Blackburn J said: ‘I apprehend that if one of the parties intends to make a contract on one set of terms, and the other intends to make a contract on another set of terms, or, as it is sometimes expressed, if the parties are not ad idem, there is no . .

These lists may be incomplete.
Updated: 15 July 2021; Ref: scu.188458

Kelsen v Imperial Tobacco Co (of Great Britain and Northern Ireland) Ltd: 1957

By an assignment in April 1946, the plaintiff acquired the lease of a shop and it tobacconist’s business. The premises were on a street with a ground floor room and a flat roof top. On the two front sides the shop was bounded by streets and on one side of the back was an adjoining building of three stories. During the lease, the defendants, wholesale tobacconists, displayed three advertising signs on the wall with the adjoining building about the shop. The signs made of sheet metal mounted on a frame which fixed against the wall but with the mounting, it extended by 4 inches into the air space above the flat roof of the shop. In April 1948 the landlords gave to the owners of the adjoining building consent to a large new sign in place of the existing signs. In December 1948, the landlords granted a new lease of the shop to the plaintiff. By clause 1 of the lease, which contained the parcels, the premises devised to the plaintiff were expressed to be subject to ‘all that right so as wants to any of the adjacent property, and by clause 2 the plaintiff covenanted not to permit any sign or advertisement to be posted on or over any part of the exterior at the shop and premises. In January 1950, no new sign having yet been affixed on the adjoining building, its owners again obtained the permission of the landlord of the plaintiffs shop for the defendants to substitute a new large advertising sign for the existing the smaller ones. A new sign was elected by the defendants in 1950 with the plaintiff’s knowledge. Its total length was about 20 feet, and the maximum distance by which part of the sign projected from the wall and over the building was 8 inches. From time to time the defendants servants had access to the sign, from the plaintiff’s shop and with his knowledge, to carry out maintenance work and repairs. In December 1953 as a result of a business dispute between the plaintiff and the defendants, the plaintiffs asked the defendants to remove the sign. After the dispute was settled, the plaintiff on being asked by the descendants whether he still wanted the side removed, replied that it could remain. Further arose between the parties, and the plaintiff gave notice to the defendant to remove the sign, and the defendants having failed to do so now brought an action against them for trespass.
Held: McNair J granted a mandatory injunction ordering the defendants to remove a sign which projected only 8 inches over the plaintiff’s property.
1 The air space above the shop was part of the premises demised to the plaintiff on a true construction of the lease of December 1948 there was nothing to displace the prima facie conclusion that the demise of the premises included the air space above the shop;
2 when in January 1950, the landlords consented to the substitution of the new sign, they could not derogate from the demise of the airspace in December 1948 to the plaintiff;
3 the plaintiffs conduct in allowing the sign to remain on the wall of the adjoining building from 1950 onwards did not estop him from subsequently requiring it to be removed, because a be hard, as most, mary represented to the defendants but he would not object to the sign in future and representation of an intention did not give rise to an estoppel; and on the facts, the descendants had not been induced by the plantiff’s conduct to act to their prejudice to such an extent as to oblige them to continue to display the sign:
4 The invasion of the plaintiff’s air-space by the sign amounted to a trespass on the part of the defendants and not merely to a nuisance. On the facts of the case, although the injury to the plaintiffs legal rights was small, he was entitled to a mandatory injunction requiring the defendants to remove that sign.
McNair J
[1957] 2 QB 344, [1957] 2 All ER 343
England and Wales

Updated: 12 July 2021; Ref: scu.268225

Greer v Kettle: HL 1938

A corporate borrower agreed to repay andpound;250,000 with interest and to charge certain specified shares in another company as security. A guarantee was procured from another company, Parent Trust. The deed of guarantee recited that the lender had made the advance to the borrower ‘on the security of a charge dated March 1929 on the shares, particulars of which are set out in the schedule hereto’.
Held: Recitals may also give rise to an estoppel in respect of specific facts stated and adopted as the basis of a transaction, provided that the facts as stated are ‘certain, clear and unambiguous’. However, Parent Trust had never become liable under the guarantee because a charge had never in fact been given over the shares. Where a person guaranteed a loan which was expressed to be secured by a charge on certain shares, and the shares had not been validly issued, it was held that the surety was not liable.
Lord Killowen explained: ‘the legal rights and liabilities of these parties depend upon the true construction and effect of the agreement of guarantee . . Once it is realized that the debt which Parent Trust are undertaking to guarantee is a debt described as a debt the repayment of which by the principal debtor is secured by a charge on (amongst other shares) the 275,000 shares in Iron Industries, Ld, the case (apart from the question of estoppel, to which I will refer) becomes in my opinion a simple one . . It is not a case, as Bennett J seems to have treated it, of seeking to imply a condition, the implication of which is alleged to be inconsistent with other provisions in the document. In other words, as Romer LJ said, it is not a case of Parent Trust being released from a contractual engagement. It is a case of an attempt to impose upon them a liability which they have never undertaken. The only debt, the repayment of which by the principal debtor they undertook to guarantee, was a debt secured by a charge on the 275,000 shares in Iron Industries, Ld, and a debt so secured never in fact existed. The language of Knight Bruce LJ in Evans v Bremridge (i) may well be applied to the present litigants. In that case it was sought to make a surety liable who became a surety on the footing that a co-surety would join in the covenant with him. The co-surety had not done so, and the surety was held to be under no liability. As the Lord Justice truly said: ‘The defendants seek to charge the plaintiff with ‘a contract, into which he did not enter.’
Lord Maugham referred to the qualification imposed by equity on the doctrine of estoppel by deed: ‘The position in equity is and was always different in this respect, that where there are proper grounds for rectifying a deed, e.g., because it is based upon a common mistake of fact, then to the extent of the rectification there can plainly be no estoppel based on the original form of the instrument. It is at least equally clear that in equity a party to a deed could not set up an estoppel in reliance on a deed in relation to which there is an equitable right to rescission or in reliance on an untrue statement of an untrue recital induced by his own representation, whether innocent or otherwise, to the other party. Authority is scarcely needed for so clear a consequence of a rectification order or an admitted or proved right to such an order. The well known rule of the Chancery Courts in regard to a receipt clause in a deed not effecting an estoppel if the money has not in fact been paid is a good illustration of the equity view . . ‘
Lord Maugham, Lord Russell of Killowen
[1938] AC 156, 158 LT 433
England and Wales
Citing:
ApprovedBrooke v Haynes CA 1868
Lord Romilly MR said: ‘A party to a deed is not estopped in equity from averring against or offering evidence to controvert a recital therein contrary to the fact, which has been introduced into the deed by mistake of fact, and not through fraud or . .
ApprovedCarpenter v Buller 29-Jul-1840
. .

Cited by:
CitedPrime Sight Ltd v Lavarello PC 9-Jul-2013
(Gibraltar) Parties to a contract for the sale of land including the appellant company declared a purchase price which both knew to be false. Faced with insolvency proceedings, the appellant sought to challenge a claim for the full amount.
Updated: 20 June 2021; Ref: scu.519652

Society of Medical Officers of Health v Hope: HL 1960

A local valuation court had decided in 1951 that the Society’s land was exempt from rates under section 1 of the 1843 Act. The exemption was conditional on certain facts relating to the Society and its purpose in occupying the building. In 1956 the land was shown as a rateable in the new valuation list. The Lands Tribunal rejected a submission that a res judicata estoppel arose from the 1951 decision even though it was admitted that there had been no change of circumstances.
Held: The limited jurisdiction of the local valuation court, which might have to form opinions on questions of general law, but only incidentally to its direct function of fixing the assessment and the special position of the valuation officer or equivalent official did not create an assessment binding for future years.
Lord Radcliffe said there was: ‘high and frequent authority for the proposition that it is not in the nature of a decision on one rate or tax that it should settle anything more than the bare issue of that one liability, and that, consequently, it cannot constitute an estoppel when a new issue of liability to a succeeding year’ s rate or tax comes up for adjudication. The question of this liability is a ‘new question.’
Lord Keith said: ‘The valuation officer has a public duty to perform by making periodically every five years a valuation list of all hereditaments, with certain exceptions, in his rating area. He must necessarily reconsider and revise the previous valuation list. He has no personal interest in any appeals taken against his valuations, and has a duty to hold the scales as fairly as he can among the ratepayers affected, the occupiers of the various hereditaments. The general body of ratepayers is constantly changing. With each quinquennium the revaluation will affect a new body of ratepayers. I doubt if the valuation officer owing such a duty to an ever-changing body of ratepayers can be regarded as always the same party in the sense in which that expression is used for the application of the rule of res judicata. What if the appellant society changes its habitat, and moves into another rating area with a different valuation officer?
I emphasise these aspects of the functions of a valuation officer under the statute, for they lead to what I regard as the true answer to the submission for the appellants, which is that a public officer in the position of the respondent cannot be estopped from carrying out his duties under the statute.’
Radcliffe, Cohen, Jenkins LL, Viscount Simons, Keith L
[1960] AC 553
Scientific Societies Act 1843 1
England and Wales
Cited by:
CitedMatalan Retail Ltd v Revenue and Customs ChD 5-Aug-2009
The taxpayer imported swimwear for sale. The respondent had incorrectly indicated that such swimwear had one classification. The claimant sought to prevent the respondent reclassifying the goods, saying that they had made given binding tariff . .

These lists may be incomplete.
Updated: 17 June 2021; Ref: scu.372323

Regina v Inland Revenue Commissioners ex parte Matrix-Securities Ltd: HL 1994

The House acknowledged the validity of pre-transaction rulings. Such rulings were of assistance both to the respondents and to the taxpayer. Lord Templeman referred to ‘[t]he trick of circular, self-cancelling payments with matching receipts and payments’.
Lord Browne-Wilkinson, Lord Mustill, Lord Templeman
[1994] 1 WLR 334
England and Wales
Cited by:
CitedStockler v HM Revenue and Customs ChD 22-Sep-2009
The taxpayer appealed against a decision confirming the Commissioners’ power to impose a penalty on him. It was said that his solicitors’ firm had negligently understated its profits. A settlement was proposed allowing a withdrawal of the return, . .

These lists may be incomplete.
Updated: 17 June 2021; Ref: scu.375141

Brooks and Burton Ltd v The Secretary of State for the Environment: 1977

Lord Widgery, Lord Chief Justice, discussed extending the concept of estoppel saying: ‘There has been some advance in recent years of this doctrine of estoppel as applied to local authorities through their officers, and the most advanced case is the one referred to by the inspector, namely Lever Finance Ltd. v. Westminster (City) London Borough Council . I do not propose to read it. It no doubt is correct on its facts, but I would deprecate any attempt to expand this doctrine because it seems to me, as I said a few minutes ago, extremely important that local government officers should feel free to help applicants who come and ask them quest ions without all the time having the shadow of estoppel hanging over them and without the possibility of their immobilising their authorities by some careless remark which produces such an estoppel’ .
Lord Widgery, Lord Chief Justice
(1977) KLGR 285
England and Wales
Cited by:
ApprovedWestern Fish Products Ltd v Penwith District Council and Another CA 22-May-1978
Estoppel Cannot Oust Statutory Discretion
The plaintiff had been refused planning permission for a factory. The refusals were followed by the issue of Enforcement Notices and Stop Notices. The plaintiff said that they had been given re-assurances upon which they had relied.
Held: The . .

These lists may be incomplete.
Updated: 14 June 2021; Ref: scu.652457

Evenden v Guildford Football Club: CA 1975

Lord Denning rejected an argument that, for promissory estoppels to apply, parties must be contractually bound to one another saying: ‘Promissory estoppel . . applies whenever a representation is made, whether of fact or law, present or future, which is intended to be binding, intended to induce a person to act upon it and he does act upon it.”
Lord Denning MR
[1975] QB 917
England and Wales
Cited by:
CitedWestern Fish Products Ltd v Penwith District Council and Another CA 22-May-1978
Estoppel Cannot Oust Statutory Discretion
The plaintiff had been refused planning permission for a factory. The refusals were followed by the issue of Enforcement Notices and Stop Notices. The plaintiff said that they had been given re-assurances upon which they had relied.
Held: The . .

These lists may be incomplete.
Updated: 14 June 2021; Ref: scu.652455

Moorgate Mercantile Company Ltd v Twitchings: CA 1975

Lord Denning MR held: ‘Estoppel is not a rule of evidence. It is not a cause of action. It is a principle of justice and of equity. It comes to this. When a man, by his words or conduct, has led another to believe in a particular state of affairs, he will not be allowed to go back on it when it would be unjust or inequitable for him to do so. Dixon J [in Grundt v Great Boulder Pty Gold Mines Ltd [1937] HCA 58; (1937) 59 CLR 641 at 674] put it in these words: ‘The principle upon which estoppel in pais is founded is that the law should not permit an unjust departure by a party from an assumption of fact which he has caused another party to adopt or accept for the purpose of their legal relations.’
In 1947, after the High Trees case [Central London Property Trust Ltd v High Trees House Ltd (1946) [1956] 1 All ER 256, [1947] KB 130], I had some correspondence with Dixon J about it, and I think I may say that he would not limit the principle to an assumption of fact, but would extend it, as I would, to include an assumption of fact or law, present or future. At any rate, it applies to an assumption of ownership or absence of ownership. This gives rise to what may be called proprietary estoppel. There are many cases where the true owner of goods or of land had led another to believe that he is not the owner, or, at any rate, is not claiming an interest therein, or that there is no objection to what the other is doing. In such cases it has been held repeatedly that the owner is not to be allowed to go back on what he has led the other to believe. So much so that his own title to the property, be it land or goods, has been held to be limited or extinguished, and new rights and interests have been created therein. And this operates by reason of his conduct – what he had led the other to believe – even though he never intended it.’
Lord Denning MR
[1976] QB 225, [1975] RTR 528, [1975] 3 WLR 286, [1975] 3 All ER 314
England and Wales
Cited by:
CitedWestern Fish Products Ltd v Penwith District Council and Another CA 22-May-1978
Estoppel Cannot Oust Statutory Discretion
The plaintiff had been refused planning permission for a factory. The refusals were followed by the issue of Enforcement Notices and Stop Notices. The plaintiff said that they had been given re-assurances upon which they had relied.
Held: The . .

These lists may be incomplete.
Updated: 14 June 2021; Ref: scu.652456

Maritime Electric Company Limited v General Dairies Limited: PC 8 Feb 1937

(Canada)
[1937] UKPC 16, [1937] AC 610
Bailii
Canada
Cited by:
CitedWestern Fish Products Ltd v Penwith District Council and Another CA 22-May-1978
Estoppel Cannot Oust Statutory Discretion
The plaintiff had been refused planning permission for a factory. The refusals were followed by the issue of Enforcement Notices and Stop Notices. The plaintiff said that they had been given re-assurances upon which they had relied.
Held: The . .

These lists may be incomplete.
Updated: 09 June 2021; Ref: scu.426091

Southend-on-Sea Corporation v Hodgson (Wickford) Ltd: QBD 1961

The Corporation had, by its engineer, said that its permission for the use of land as a builder’s yard was not in fact and law required. It was mistaken in this view.
Held: What the engineer had said could not create an estoppel preventing the Corporation from exercising its statutory discretion to forbid the land being used as a builder’s yard. A local or planning authority cannot by contract fetter in an anticipatory way its future discretion to approve or reject applications after proper consideration in accordance with the prescribed procedure. An officer of a Planning Authority cannot estop that Planning Authority from subsequently contending that the particular development is not permitted
Lord Parker CJ
[1962] 1 QB 416, [1961] 2 All ER 46
England and Wales
Cited by:
CitedLever (Finance) Ltd v City of Westminster CA 22-Jul-1970
The appellant developers had obtained detailed planning approval for fourteen houses, but after adjustments for a building line, moving several properties distances of several feet toward other properties, further plans were submitted without . .
CitedWestern Fish Products Ltd v Penwith District Council and Another CA 22-May-1978
Estoppel Cannot Oust Statutory Discretion
The plaintiff had been refused planning permission for a factory. The refusals were followed by the issue of Enforcement Notices and Stop Notices. The plaintiff said that they had been given re-assurances upon which they had relied.
Held: The . .

These lists may be incomplete.
Updated: 04 June 2021; Ref: scu.443218

Wells v Minister of Housing and Local Government: CA 1967

It had been the practice of planning authorities, acting through their officers, to tell applicants whether or not planning permission was necessary. A letter was written by the Council Engineer telling the applicants that no permission was necessary. The applicants acted on it.
Held: The planning authority could not go back on it. Lord Denning MR said: ‘It has been their practice to tell applicants that no planning permission is necessary. Are they now to be allowed to say that this practice was all wrong and their letters were of no effect? I do not think so. I take the law to be that a defect in procedure can be cured and an irregularity can be waived, even by a public authority, so as to render valid that which would otherwise be invalid.’
Lord Denning MR, Lord Justice Megaw
[1967] 1 WLR 1000
England and Wales
Cited by:
CitedLever (Finance) Ltd v City of Westminster CA 22-Jul-1970
The appellant developers had obtained detailed planning approval for fourteen houses, but after adjustments for a building line, moving several properties distances of several feet toward other properties, further plans were submitted without . .
CitedWestern Fish Products Ltd v Penwith District Council and Another CA 22-May-1978
Estoppel Cannot Oust Statutory Discretion
The plaintiff had been refused planning permission for a factory. The refusals were followed by the issue of Enforcement Notices and Stop Notices. The plaintiff said that they had been given re-assurances upon which they had relied.
Held: The . .

These lists may be incomplete.
Updated: 04 June 2021; Ref: scu.443221

Inwards v Baker: CA 13 Jan 1965

An indulgent father had encouraged his son to build a bungalow on his, the father’s, land. The son had done so in the expectation, encouraged by the father, that he would be permitted to remain in occupation.
Held: The court formulated the principle of equitable estoppel on the footing that where a person has expended money on the land of another with the expectation, induced or encouraged by the owner of the land, that he would be allowed to remain in occupation, an equity is created such that the court would protect his occupation of the land; and that the court has power to determine in what way the equity so arising would be satisfied. The court therefore refused the plaintiff an order for possession of the bungalow which his son had built on the land, and held that the son was entitled to stay there as long as he wanted. It need not be not fatal to a claim under the doctrine of proprietary estoppel that the property in which the right is claimed has not been precisely identified.
Lord Denning MR, Danckwerts and Salmon LJJ
[1965] QB 29, [1965] 1 All ER 446, [1965] 2 WLR 212, [1965] EWCA Civ 465
Bailii
England and Wales
Citing:
FollowedRamsden v Dyson HL 1866
The Vice-Chancellor had held that two tenants of Sir John Ramsden, the owner of a large estate near Huddersfield, were entitled to long leases of plots on the estate. They ostensibly held the plots as tenants at will only, but they had spent their . .

Cited by:
CitedSledmore v Dalby CA 8-Feb-1996
The plaintiff sought possession of a house. She had owned it with her late husband. The defendant lived in and had done much work on the house, but the deceased left it all to the plaintiff and the defendant’s wife who had since also died. She . .
CitedParker v Parker ChD 24-Jul-2003
Lord Macclesfield claimed a right to occupy a castle. The owners claimed that he had only a mere tenancy at will. The exact rooms in the castle which had been occupied had varied over time.
Held: The applicant was entitled to reasonable . .
CitedGillett v Holt and Another CA 23-Mar-2000
Repeated Assurances Created Equitable Estoppel
Repeated assurances, given over years, that the claimant would acquire an interest in property on the death of the person giving the re-assurance, and upon which the claimant relied to his detriment, could found a claim of equitable estoppel. The . .
CitedStrover and Another v Strover and Another ChD 10-May-2005
Insurance policies had been taken out by the partners in a firm. The surviving family of one and the remaining partners contested ownership. The policy was held in part for the benefit of the family. The premiums had been paid from partnership . .
CitedThorner v Curtis and others ChD 26-Oct-2007
The claimant said that the deceased, his father and a farmer, had made representations to him over many years that if the claimant continued to work on the farm, he would leave the farm to him in his will. He died intestate. He claimed a proprietary . .
CitedYeoman’s Row Management Ltd and Another v Cobbe HL 30-Jul-2008
The parties agreed in principle for the sale of land with potential development value. Considerable sums were spent, and permission achieved, but the owner then sought to renegotiate the deal.
Held: The appeal succeeded in part. The finding . .
CitedDodsworth v Dodsworth and Another CA 3-Jul-1973
. .
CitedWestern Fish Products Ltd v Penwith District Council and Another CA 22-May-1978
Estoppel Cannot Oust Statutory Discretion
The plaintiff had been refused planning permission for a factory. The refusals were followed by the issue of Enforcement Notices and Stop Notices. The plaintiff said that they had been given re-assurances upon which they had relied.
Held: The . .

These lists may be incomplete.
Updated: 04 June 2021; Ref: scu.183816

Downderry Construction Ltd v Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions and Another: Admn 11 Jan 2002

The applicant had an existing planning permission. They sought and received confirmation from the local authority that the permission remained in effect. They then sought a certificate of lawful use. The letter confirming the permission had been issued in error, but the claimant asserted that the council were estopped from refusing the certificate. The inspector said the developer knew enough not to have relied upon the letter.
Held: A public authority may be subject to an estoppel even in exercising its statutory duties in exceptional circumstances. Here the representation made by the council was clear and unambiguous, and the applicant believed it and relied upon it to his detriment. It was not justified to say he should have known the falsity of the representation. There is no requirement as to the reasonableness of the claimant relying upon the representation. The inspector erred in law and his decision was quashed.
Richards J
[2002] EWHC 2 (Admin)
Bailii
Town and Country Planning Act 1990 191 192
England and Wales
Citing:
CitedWestern Fish Products Ltd v Penwith District Council and Another CA 22-May-1978
Estoppel Cannot Oust Statutory Discretion
The plaintiff had been refused planning permission for a factory. The refusals were followed by the issue of Enforcement Notices and Stop Notices. The plaintiff said that they had been given re-assurances upon which they had relied.
Held: The . .

These lists may be incomplete.
Updated: 04 June 2021; Ref: scu.168018

Regina (Reprotech (Pebsham) Ltd) v East Sussex County Council Reprotech (Pebsham) Ltd v Same: HL 28 Feb 2002

The respondent company had asserted that the local authority had made a determination of the issue of whether electricity could be generated on a waste treatment site without further planning permission. The council said that without a formal planning application, no determination had been made.
Held: The procedure of making a determination had important consequences. It was one stage of a statutory process, which required for several reasons that there first should be a planning application. Nor, here was there any material upon which as estoppel could be raised against the council. Estoppels may bind individuals, where it would unconscionable for them to deny what they had represented or agreed. But those private law concepts should not be extended into the public law of planning control, which bound everyone. Attempts to reconcile the law of estoppel in private and public law contexts were unsatisfactory.
Lord Hoffmann: ‘Public law can also take into account the hierarchy of individual rights which exist under the Human Rights Act 1998, so that, for example, the individual’s right to a home is accorded a high degree of protection . . while ordinary property rights are in general far more limited by considerations of public interest . . .’
Lord Nicholls of Birkenhead, Lord Mackay of Clashfern, Lord Hoffmann, Lord Hope of Craighead and Lord Scott of Foscote
Times 05-Mar-2002, [2002] UKHL 8, [2003] 1 WLR 348, [2002] 4 All ER 58, [2002] 10 EGCS 158, [2003] 1 P and CR 5, [2002] JPL 821, [2002] NPC 32
House of Lords, Bailii
Town and Country Planning Act 1964 64, Town and Country Planning General Development Order 1988 (SI 1988 No 1813)
England and Wales
Citing:
CitedNewbury District Council v Secretary of State for the Environment HL 1980
Issues arose as to a new planning permission for two existing hangars.
Held: The appeal succeeded. The question of the validity of conditions attached to planning permissions will sometimes be a difficult one. To be valid, a condition must be . .
CitedWestern Fish Products Ltd v Penwith District Council and Another CA 22-May-1978
Estoppel Cannot Oust Statutory Discretion
The plaintiff had been refused planning permission for a factory. The refusals were followed by the issue of Enforcement Notices and Stop Notices. The plaintiff said that they had been given re-assurances upon which they had relied.
Held: The . .
Appeal fromRegina v East Sussex County Council (ex parte Reprotech (Pebsham) Limited) Admn 30-Jul-1999
Where an application for an alteration in a planning permission would mean also that the original use for which permission had been granted would need alteration, a local authority was correct to treat the new use as if it had been a use ancillary . .

Cited by:
CitedBloggs 61, Regina (on the Application of) v Secretary of State for the Home Department CA 18-Jun-2003
The applicant sought review of a decision to remove him from a witness protection scheme within the prison. He claimed that having been promised protection, he had a legitimate expectation of protection, having been told he would receive protection . .
CitedRowland v The Environment Agency CA 19-Dec-2003
The claimant owned a house by the river Thames at Hedsor Water. Public rights of navigation existed over the Thames from time immemorial, and its management lay with the respondent. Landowners at Hedsor had sought to assert that that stretch was now . .
CitedStancliffe Stone Company Ltd v Peak District National Park Authority QBD 22-Jun-2004
The claimants sought a declaration. Planning permission had been confirmed for four mineral extraction sites by letter in 1952. In 1996, two were listed as now being dormant. The claimant said the letter of 1952 created on single planning permision . .
CitedSecretary of State for Work and Pensions v M HL 8-Mar-2006
The respondent’s child lived with the estranged father for most of each week. She was obliged to contribute child support. She now lived with a woman, and complained that because her relationship was homosexual, she had been asked to pay more than . .
CitedYeoman’s Row Management Ltd and Another v Cobbe HL 30-Jul-2008
The parties agreed in principle for the sale of land with potential development value. Considerable sums were spent, and permission achieved, but the owner then sought to renegotiate the deal.
Held: The appeal succeeded in part. The finding . .
CitedGrimsby Institute of Further and Higher Education, Regina (on The Application of) v Learning and Skills Council Admn 12-Aug-2010
The applicant had applied to the respondent for funding for new buildings. The application was approved, but the application was rejected when the respondent ran out of funds. The claimant said that a legitimate expectation had been created, and . .

These lists may be incomplete.
Updated: 04 June 2021; Ref: scu.167713

McGuane v Welch: CA 11 Jul 2008

Appeal from a decision applying the doctrines of proprietary estoppel and constructive trust to dealings between the parties about a long lease of residential property acquired by a council tenant in the exercise of his statutory right to buy.
[2008] EWCA Civ 785
Bailii
England and Wales

Updated: 01 June 2021; Ref: scu.270704

Universal Permanent Building Society v Cooke: CA 1951

The mortgagor agreed to buy a shop with living accommodation above. She let the flat to her sister before completion, and by the date of the mortgage, the sister was in possession. After default, the lender sought possession under the mortgage, but was only granted possession subject to the tenancy. The mortgage was granted the day after the completion of the purchase.
Held: With no evidence to the contrary, there was an interval between the conveyance and the mortgage during which time the tenant’s tenancy by estoppel became a tenancy at law with priority over the mortgage. The estoppel was fed by the acquisition of the legal estate.
Jenkins LJ, Lord Evershed MR
[1952] Ch 95, [1951] 2 All ER 893, [1951] 2 TLR 962
England and Wales
Citing:
DistinguishedCoventry Permanent Economic Building Society v Jones ChD 1951
The contracting purchaser of a property agreed, prior to completion, to let the ground floor of the property to two tenants. She subsequently borrowed a sum of money from the plaintiffs to enable her to complete the purchase. On completion, she . .

Cited by:
CitedScott v Southern Pacific Mortgages Ltd and Others SC 22-Oct-2014
The appellant challenged a sale and rent back transaction. He said that the proposed purchaser had misrepresented the transaction to them. The Court was asked s whether the home owners had interests whose priority was protected by virtue of section . .

These lists may be incomplete.
Updated: 01 June 2021; Ref: scu.259705

Gregory v Mighell: 1811

(1811) 18 Ves 328
England and Wales
Cited by:
CitedYaxley v Gotts and Another CA 24-Jun-1999
Oral Agreement Creating Proprietory Estoppel
The defendant offered to give to the Plaintiff, a builder, the ground floor of a property in return for converting the house, and then managing it. They were friends, and the oral offer was accepted. The property was then actually bought in the name . .

These lists may be incomplete.
Updated: 21 May 2021; Ref: scu.193608

Crown Estates Commissioners v Dorset County Council: 1990

Res judicata (more properly estoppel per rem judicatam) is a form of estoppel which gives effect to the policy of the law that the parties to a judicial decision should not afterwards be allowed to re-litigate the same question, even though the decision may be wrong. If it is wrong, it must be challenged by appeal or not at all. As between themselves, the parties are bound by the decision, and may neither re-litigate the same cause of action nor re-open any issue which was an essential part of the decision. The doctrine comes into its own only when the decision is wrong; if it is right, it merely serves to save time and costs.
Millett
[1990] Ch 297
England and Wales
Cited by:
CitedMulkerrins v Pricewaterhouse Coopers HL 31-Jul-2003
The claimant sought damages from her former accountants for failing to protect her from bankruptcy. The receiver had unnecessarily caused great difficulties in making their claim that such an action vested in them. The defendants had subsequently, . .

These lists may be incomplete.
Updated: 21 May 2021; Ref: scu.185411

Lyon v Reed: 1844

The court examined the principle of the surrender of a lease by operation of law: ‘. . . all the old cases will be found to depend on the principle to which we have adverted, namely, an act done by or to the owner of a particular estate, the validity of which he is estopped from disputing, and which could not have been done if the particular estate continued to exist. The law there says, that the act itself amounts to a surrender. In such case it will be observed there can be no question of intention. The surrender is not the result of intention. It takes place independently, and even in spite of intention. Thus, in the cases which we have adverted to of a lessee taking a second lease from the lessor, or a tenant for life accepting a feoffment from the party in remainder, or a lessee accepting a rent-charge from his lessor, it would not at all alter the case to show that there was no intention to surrender the particular estate, or even that there was an express intention to keep it unsurrendered. In all these cases the surrender would be the act of the law, and would prevail in spite of the intention of the parties.’
Baron Parke: ‘In order to ascertain how far … cases can be relied on as authorities, we must consider what is meant by a surrender by operation of law. This term is applied to cases where the owner of a particular estate has been a party to some act, the validity of which he is by law afterwards estopped from disputing, and which would not be valid if his particular estate had continued to exist. There the law treats the doing of such act as amounting to a surrender. Thus, if a lessee for years accept a new lease for his lessor, he is estopped from saying that his lessor had not power to make the new lease; and, as the lessor could not do this until the prior lease had been surrendered, the law says that the acceptance of such new lease is of itself a surrender…’ and ‘If we apply these principles to the case now before us, it will be seen that they do not at all warrant the conclusion, that there was a surrender of the lease of the 7th of April, 1812, by act and operation of law. Even adopting, as we do, the argument of the plaintiff, that the delivery up by Ord and Planta of the lease in question affords cogent evidence of their having consented to the making of the new lease, still there is no estoppel in such a case. It is an act which, like any other ordinary act in pais, is capable of being explained, and its effect must therefore depend, not on any legal consequence necessarily attaching on and arising out of the act itself, but on the intention of the parties.’ and ‘The acts in pais which bind parties by way of estoppel are but few, and are pointed out by Lord Coke, Co Litt, 352a. They are all acts which anciently really were, and in contemplation of law have always continued to be, acts of notoriety, not less formal and solemn than the execution of a deed, such as livery, entry, acceptance of an estate, and the like. Whether a party had or had not concurred in an act of this sort, was deemed a matter which there could be no difficulty in ascertaining, and then the legal consequences followed. But in what uncertainty and peril will titles be placed, if they are liable to be affected by such accidents as those alluded to by Mr Justice Bayley.’
Baron Parke
(1844) 13 MandW 285, [1843-60] All ER Rep 178
England and Wales
Cited by:
CitedAllen and Another v Rochdale Borough Council CA 23-Mar-1999
Land was sold. It had been used as playing fields. The freehold and leasehold interests in the land were held by the respondent, and the claimants asserted it was held as bare trustees for them as charitable trustees for the school foundation. The . .
CitedEaling Family Housing Association Ltd v McKenzie CA 10-Oct-2003
The defendant and his wife separated when she left the flat they shared. She accepted a new tenancy of other premises. The landlord claimed possession of the flat, saying that the tenancy had ended.
Held: There was no express surrender within . .
CitedMattey Securities Limited v Ervin, Sutton, Mitchell CA 3-Apr-1998
After the insolvency of an assignee of a lease, the landlord talked with possible new tenants, and the original lessee now said that the landlord had impliedly accepted a surrender of the original lease, thus releasing him from continuing liability. . .

These lists may be incomplete.
Updated: 21 May 2021; Ref: scu.187386

Outram v Morewood: 1803

Where a fact or title had been put at issue between the parties in an action for trespass, the ensuing verdict creates an estoppel preventing the same parties relitigating that fact or title. Of a finding of trespass, in relation to some coal lying close under the land of the plaintiff, the court said: ‘A finding upon title in trespass not only operates as a bar to the future recovery of damages for a trespass founded on the same injury, but also operates by way of estoppel to any action for an injury through the same supposed right of possession.’
Lord Ellenborough
(1803) 3 East 346, [1803] 102 ER 630, [1803] EngR 498
Commonlii
England and Wales
Cited by:
CitedHamilton v Weston CA 14-Jul-1997
. .

These lists may be incomplete.
Updated: 21 May 2021; Ref: scu.231143

Kingston’s (Duchess) Case: 1776

The judgment of a court of concurrent jurisdiction, directly upon the point, is as a plea, a bar, or as evidence, conclusive between the same parties coming incidentaly in question in another court for a different purpose. The principle of litigation privilege is restricted to legal advice.
(1776) 1 East PC 468, (1776) 20 ST 336
England and Wales
Cited by:
CitedPenn-Texas Corporation v Murat Anstalt (No 2) CA 1964
The court considered a claim for an issue estoppel arising from a foreign judgment: ‘In my opinion a previous judgment between the same parties is only conclusive on matters which are conclusive and necessary to the decision. It is not conclusive on . .
CitedThree Rivers District Council and others v Governor and Company of the Bank of England (No 6) HL 11-Nov-2004
The Bank anticipated criticism in an ad hoc enquiry which was called to investigate its handling of a matter involving the claimant. The claimant sought disclosure of the documents created when the solicitors advised employees of the Bank in . .

These lists may be incomplete.
Updated: 21 May 2021; Ref: scu.188235

Taylor v Neeham: 1810

‘It would be a very odd in the law of any country, if A could take by any form of conveyance, a greater or better right than he had who conveys it to him; it would be contrary to all principle. But it does not rest merely on the general principle; if you look into all the books upon estoppel, you find it laid down, that parties and privies are not estopped, and he who takes an estate under a deed, is privy in estate, and therefore never can be in a better situation than he from whom he takes it.’
Mansfield CJ
[1810] 2 Taunt 278
England and Wales

Updated: 20 May 2021; Ref: scu.183682

Norwegian American Cruises A/S (formerly Norwegian American Lines A/S) v Paul Munday Ltd (The “Vistafjord”): 1988

A party may be precluded by an estoppel by convention from raising a contention contrary to a common assumption of fact or law (which could include the validity of a notice) upon which they have acted.
[1988] 2 Lloyds Rep 343
England and Wales
Citing:
CitedAmalgamated Investment and Property Co Ltd (in Liq) v Texas Commerce International Bank Ltd CA 1982
The court explained the nature of an estoppel by convention.
Lord Denning MR said: ‘The doctrine of estoppel is one of the most flexible and useful in the armoury of the law. But it has become overloaded with cases. That is why I have not gone . .

Cited by:
CitedMannai Investment Co Ltd v Eagle Star Assurance HL 21-May-1997
Minor Irregularity in Break Notice Not Fatal
Leases contained clauses allowing the tenant to break the lease by serving not less than six months notice to expire on the third anniversary of the commencement date of the term of the lease. The tenant gave notice to determine the leases on 12th . .
CitedStancliffe Stone Company Ltd v Peak District National Park Authority QBD 22-Jun-2004
The claimants sought a declaration. Planning permission had been confirmed for four mineral extraction sites by letter in 1952. In 1996, two were listed as now being dormant. The claimant said the letter of 1952 created on single planning permision . .

These lists may be incomplete.
Updated: 20 May 2021; Ref: scu.185088

In re Basham dec’d; Basham v Basham: 1986

The claimant and her husband had helped her mother and her stepfather throughout the claimant’s adult life. She received no remuneration but understood that she would inherit her stepfather’s property when he died. After her mother’s death and until her stepfather’s death she and her husband lived near the cottage to which her stepfather had moved (but never lived in the cottage). The claimant was told by her stepfather that ‘she would lose nothing’ by her help and (a few days before his death) that she was to have the cottage. The deputy judge held that she was entitled, by proprietary estoppel, to the whole of the estate of her stepfather (who died intestate). He rejected the submission that the principle could not extend beyond cases where the claimant already had enjoyment of an identified item of property.
Edward Nugee QC said: ‘In the present case it is in my judgment clearly established by the evidence, first, that the plaintiff had a belief at all material times that she was going to receive both Rosslyn and the remainder of the deceased’s property on his death, and secondly, that this belief was encouraged by the deceased . . I am satisfied that the deceased encouraged the plaintiff in the belief that all the property he possessed at the date of his death would pass to her.’ and
‘The plaintiff relies on proprietary estoppel, the principle of which, in its broadest form, may be stated as follows: where one person, A, has acted to his detriment on the faith of a belief, which was known to and encouraged by another person, B, that he either has or is going to be given a right in or over B’s property, B cannot insist on his strict legal rights if to do so would be inconsistent with A’s belief.’ and ‘But in my judgment, at all events where the belief is that A is going to be given a right in the future, it is properly to be regarded as giving rise to a species of constructive trust, which is the concept employed by a court of equity to prevent a person from relying on his legal rights where it would be unconscionable for him to do so.’
Edward Nugee QC
[1986] 1 WLR 1498, [1987] 1 All ER 405
England and Wales
Citing:
CitedTaylors Fashions Ltd v Liverpool Victoria Trustees Co Ltd ChD 1981
The fundamental principle that equity is concerned to prevent unconscionable conduct permeates all the elements of the doctrine of estoppel. In the light of the more recent cases, the principle ‘requires a very much broader approach which is . .

Cited by:
CitedKeelwalk Properties Ltd v Betty Waller and Another CA 30-Jul-2002
The claimant appealed refusal of its claim for possession against the respondents, occupiers of single-storey wooden bungalows on its land. The leases had expired. The defendants said the structures were their own, and not subject to the lease, and . .
CitedGillett v Holt and Another CA 23-Mar-2000
Repeated Assurances Created Equitable Estoppel
Repeated assurances, given over years, that the claimant would acquire an interest in property on the death of the person giving the re-assurance, and upon which the claimant relied to his detriment, could found a claim of equitable estoppel. The . .
CitedParker v Parker ChD 24-Jul-2003
Lord Macclesfield claimed a right to occupy a castle. The owners claimed that he had only a mere tenancy at will. The exact rooms in the castle which had been occupied had varied over time.
Held: The applicant was entitled to reasonable . .
CitedGrundy v Ottey CA 31-Jul-2003
The deceased left his estate within a discretionary trust. The claimant sought to assert an interest in it, claiming an estoppel and, under the 1975 Act, as his partner. They had lived together for four years. She had been dependent upon him . .
CitedThorner v Major and others CA 2-Jul-2008
The deceased had written a will, revoked it but then not made another. The claimant had worked for the deceased understanding that property would be left to him, and now claimed that the estate property was held under a trust for him.
Held: . .
CitedThorner v Major and others HL 25-Mar-2009
The deceased had made a will including a gift to the claimant, but had then revoked the will. The claimant asserted that an estoppel had been created in his favour over a farm, and that the defendant administrators of the promisor’s estate held it . .

These lists may be incomplete.
Updated: 19 May 2021; Ref: scu.182388

Fidelitas Shipping Co Ltd v V/O Exportchleb: CA 1965

Where there is an award that is on its face an interim award, then the arbitrator is only functus officio with respect to the issues dealt with in that interim award and retains the authority to deal with the remaining matters. Issue estoppel applies to arbitration proceedings, including interim awards, as it does to normal civil litigation.
Lord Denning MR said: ‘Within one issue, there may be several points available which go to aid one party or the other in his efforts to secure a determination of the issue in his favour. The rule then is that each party must use reasonable diligence to bring forward every point which he thinks would help him. If he omits to raise any particular point, from negligence, inadvertence, or even accident (which would or might have decided the issue in his favour) he may find himself shut out from raising that point again, at any rate in any case where the self-same issue arises in the same or subsequent proceedings. But this again is not an inflexible rule. It can be departed from in special circumstances.’
Lord Denning MR, Diplock LJ
[1966] 1 QB 630, [1965] 2 WLR 1059, [1965] 2 All ER 4, [1961] 1 Lloyds Rep 223
England and Wales
Cited by:
CitedRysaffe Trustee Company (CI) Ltd and Another v Ataghan Ltd and others ChD 8-Aug-2006
Complex family trusts had been created over many years. Various documents were now disputed, and particularly the extent of land demised by a lease, and whether a surender of a lease had occurred. Landslides had disturbed the boundaries of the land. . .
CitedBrown v Rice and Another ChD 14-Mar-2007
The parties, the bankrupt and her trustee, had engaged in a mediation which failed at first, but applicant said an agreement was concluded on the day following. The defendants denied this, and the court as asked to determine whether a settlement had . .
CitedCoke-Wallis, Regina (on The Application of) v Institute of Chartered Accountants In England and Wales SC 19-Jan-2011
The appellant chartered accountant had been convicted in Jersey after removing documents from his offices relating to a disputed trust and in breach of an order from his professional institute. The court now considered the relevance and application . .

These lists may be incomplete.
Updated: 12 May 2021; Ref: scu.245079

Forrester v The Secretary Of State For The Environment And South Buckinghamshire District Council: Admn 14 Mar 1997

The applicant appealed dismissal of his appeal against a planning enforcement notice issued by the respondent. He said the change had taken place more than ten years before the notice and so was immune to enforcement proceedings. An earlier decision appeared to establish use at that time.
Held: An issue estoppel was claimed for which there are four requirements: a formal decision on the issue, an issue between the parties to the decision, it must have been a final decision, and of the sort in which an issue estoppel can arise. Those conditions were met. The inspector had failed to recognise that his findings were limited by an issue estoppel, and the matter must be remitted..
His Honour Judge Rich
[1997] EWHC Admin 271, [1997] EWHC Admin 271
Bailii
England and Wales
Citing:
CitedPorter and Another v Secretary of State for Transport CA 3-Jun-1996
No issue estoppel on land value arose from a previous Secretary’s finding on Lands Tribunal. . .
CitedWychavon District Council v Secretary of State for the Environment and Another CA 24-Oct-1994
The Secretary of State was entitled to a costs order whether or not matter of principle had arisen in the course of a planning appeal. . .

These lists may be incomplete.
Updated: 11 May 2021; Ref: scu.137216