Lissimore 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 his other girlfriends and she would not be different’ did not found a proprietary estoppel: ‘Such statements do not on their face relate to any specific property, they plainly do not amount to a representation which binds the whole of Mr Downing’s property, and they are not expressed in terms which enable any objective assessment to be made of what is being promised. In this last respect they are to be contrasted with statements made to unpaid or underpaid workers or business partners, encouraged to work on because they would be ‘treated right’, and for whom a commensurate reward could be objectively assessed.’


Norris QC J


[2003] EWHC B1 (Ch), [2003] 2 FLR 308, [2003] Fam Law 566




England and Wales


See AlsoDowning v Lissimore CA 6-Nov-2002
Application for order to reflect interest of cohabiting partner in house. . .

Cited by:

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 . .
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.

Trusts, Estoppel

Updated: 02 February 2022; Ref: scu.263204