English and Literature
Submitted By tuttikala
Family Law Assignment 1. The issue of cohabitation has sparked much debate among commentators as cohabitation has become a ‘strong alternative’ to marriage. This means that there have been calls for the law to recognise cohabitation but critics say this would undermine marriage. Within this answer we will look at the current status of the law especially the law to do with family property, the proposals for reform and look at the different arguments.
If we look at the current law when it comes to marriage each party can seek court orders requiring one party to pay maintenance and the court has the power to redistribute any property owned by either party. Also on death the living spouse is the next of kin. However the court has no similar power to ‘adjust’ rights and property, they only can ‘declare’ who owns what. This can be seen where cohabiting couples have family property. Under the Law of Property Act 1925 section 53 express trusts have to made in writing .In this case the court can divide the property according to the written declaration. But this not the case where there is an implied or constructive trusts. Firstly there has to be common intention in which there has to be evidence which shows whether the property was supposed to be jointly owned .Secondly the claimant has to act to their detriment. However this system may not have favourable outcomes. As seen in Burns v Burns where the plaintiff lived with the defendant for nineteen years but never married the defendant and he bought the house in his name. He paid for the entire purchase price. But the plaintiff didn’t make any financial contributions. The court held that there had to be an indirect or direct financial contribution in order to claim beneficial interest in the property. This was also seen in Lloyds Bank v Rosset. But if the claimant has made significant contribution then they can…...