Joint Ownership Causes Problems

Law Society and Land Registry have warned that each solicitor has to encourage people who purchase joint property to say who owns what because otherwise later there may be lots of disputes when let’s say a relationship breaks down.

These will make best if they make a declaration of trust using the Land Registry form JO.

Such problems appear not only between unmarried couples but also between business partners, friends and even family members who own something together.

This practice started because of recent court decisions, Stack v Dowden [2007] UKHL 17 and Jones v Kernott[2011] UKSC 53 according to which joint home buyers have to define what exactly their property is and record their interests in this property.

The Land Registry JO form appears as an alternative way for joint owners to give information about their interests and details of an existing separate declaration of trust, at the time when they acquire the property.

Jonathan Smithers said: ‘I am pleased that the Law Society and Land Registry have worked together to provide detailed and up to date advice to solicitors practicing in what is a complicated area of the law. ‘The note will direct solicitors to the practical implications of statements made in recent cases so that their clients can continue to receive the best advice possible.’

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