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Co-ownership and estoppel.

The editor of this section of the site is Samantha Jackson of 1 Chancery Lane, London.

Beneficial ownership

TR1 not signed – constructive trust

Insol Funding Company Ltd v Cowlam and Cowley
[2017] EWHC 1822 (Ch)


In proceedings to enforce an equitable charge it was held that the beneficial interest in a property purchased in joint names was held on a constructive trust as tenants in common. This was largely as a result of an agreement as to the ownership of the property after the purchase. Accordingly the first defendant had an 80% beneficial interest and to the second defendant had a 20% interest.


Ms Sacha Cowlam (“SC”) sought, inter alia, a determination of the extent of her interest in a property. SC and her former domestic partner, Christopher Cowey, (CC) had purchased the property, their home, in joint names. The TR1 effecting the transfer recorded, by way of purported declaration of trust, that the transferees were to hold the property as beneficial joint tenants. However, contrary to the notes contained in TR1, neither SC nor CC executed the transfer.

CC was made bankrupt and approached Insol to borrow money in order to procure the annulment of his bankruptcy. As security for that borrowing SC and CC as joint owners of the property, purported to charge their legal and beneficial interests in it by way of a second charge in favour of Insol.

Subsequently, Insol called in its loan and brought proceedings for possession of the property. However, both the loan and the charge were set aside as against SC on the basis of CC's undue influence, of which Insol's was held to be fixed with notice. However, a money judgment was entered against CC in respect of the loan and costs.

Subsequently, further proceedings were brought against CC for a declaration that his beneficial interest in the property was subject to an equitable charge in respect of the loan monies advanced to him. That declaration was upheld on appeal (Cowey v Onsol Funding [2012] EWHC 2421 (Ch)).

In respect of the current proceedings (in which CC did not participate) Ins ... THIS IS AN EXTRACT OF THE FULL TEXT. TO GET THE FULL TEXT, SEE BELOW

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