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Thread: Posesary title after 14-15 yrs.

  1. #1

    Posesary title after 14-15 yrs.

    If there are any solicitors out there who could help advise me please?
    I have been friends with a couple for over 20yrs she was a teacher in the secondary school I attended & he was a lecturer in the local collage, to cut a long story short in about 1998-99 they gave me the use of a garbage & some ground about half way up their drive, I lived in one of their houses for about 18mths then moved out & bk into my own whilst there I did a great deal of work on the property for them to make it liveable & saleable which they subsequently did, sell it I mean, in gratitude for this and many other things I had done for them they said they would give me the ground & garage as a building plot so that I could build a house there for myself in later years on the condition I didn't do it untill they had moved out or sold the house, this was acceptable to me and no more was said, I continued helping them on the work needed on this house even building a new retaining wall around the house as the old one had failed which is about 20m long 20 feet above ground and 1.5m thick at base 100m2 almost went into it so you can imagine the work all done by me & the owner & another elderly friend(mostly by me) the wife had become astranged by now and lived in their property in west Wales & the daughter had married whitch I also helped with, I built up some of the area around the garage & laid a base & curbs then tarmac the area & put my larder unit on it (20'x10) & a parking/unloading space the garbage I still used for storage. My friend developed a bowel problem & recently went in to have part removed his wife & daughter moved bk to this house and started organising his life & clearing the ground & house.
    She telephoned me today and announced that I have untill Wednesday to remove all my stuff from the property or she will have a low loader take it from there, and deposit it all outside my house, I pointed out to her that she had given it to me and she said that dosent matter I can't prove it and it's tough that I had spent money on it, that they were selling the house complet, & I was not having it, tough!
    I visited my friend in hospital & had to leave for a while as I was upset but didn't mention it to him, however while I was outside my Mrs discussed it with him & he said his wife can't do that she gave it to him, I told her not to do anything silly last night, when I returned he said he was sorry but unable to do anything about it while in hospital but that they had timed It right while he was in hospital & I explained that she said all correspondence should now go through their solicitor (their son) but I feel awfull having to burden him with this but I can't possibly move my stuff I've nowhere to put it & it seems so unjust, can she do this I'm not in a financial position to fight this for long through the courts espically as they won't have any costs but I thought I'd have some rights to it after having it for so long & doing work on it, I know if it went to court my friend wouldn't lie about it being a gift and many people are aware/know that it was mine, but where do I stand I don't want to make things harder for my friend either?
    Last edited by CWMMAN3738; 11-07-2013 at 17:04.

  2. #2

    I am not a solicitor and would suggest you find one, but this is my understanding: I know this one is about dogs but the principal is still the same I believe.

    Law of contract:

    The law of contract is the study of legal principles which underlie all contracts,it is not concerned with particular types of contracts and their specialized rules (Koffman and Macconald 2001).

    What contract laws do? (Chen -Wishart 2005)

    Initially a agreement is formed between two parties, when some disputes between the parties arises over the agreement, then one or both parties initiates the judicial process. Then the judicial applies the rules of the contract law and gives the result. Though the contract law basically stands on the basics of the agreement of the parties, the result is completely based on the process of judicial application of the contract law.

    Purpose of contract law: Butterworths states that contract law has many “purposes”, but the central one is to support and to control the million of agreements that collectively make up the “market economy”. (Chiris Turner 2007)

    Based on the knowledge of law of contract, Legal advice will be given in the assignment.

    Nancy and Andy case, Andy is advised whether Andy is eligible to clam the reward 3000 announced by Nancy for safe return of her dog, which Nancy has refused to give to Andy even after safe return of her dog saying she have never made that offer to him as a individual.

    2. Nancy and Andy Case

    2.1. Brief introduction of the case.

    Nancy owns a pet dog called Rombo one day she finds it missing then she placed an advertisement in the press stating “MISSING DOG, OFFER OF REWARD” and she also stated that “ I am offering 3000 for its safe return”. Looking at the advertisement one person named Andy remembered that he saw the similar dog roaming in the nearby park and the next day he caught the dog and returned the dog to Nancy and reminded her about the offer she mentioned in the advertisement, in reply to that she said “stop being so silly, Andy! I have never made the offer to you as an individual” and told him to leave the house.

    2.2. Legal issues arising in the case

    The main legal issue in the case whether Nancy is subjected to contract with Andy to pay him 3000.

    In order to solve the above legal issue we have to checkout the main elements of the contract the case. Let these elements be offer, acceptance and intention to be legally bound.

    2.3. Term to be discussed.


    “A contract is an agreement between two parties by which both are bounded in law and which can therefore be enforced in a court or other equivalent forum” (Chirs Turner 2006), The person who places the offer is known as offeror and the person who accept the offer is an offeree. We have two different terms to be known. They are offer and acceptance(accept). This are the two main things in a contract.

    One way of classifying contracts is according to whether they are ‘bilateral' or ‘unilateral'.

    Bilateral contract

    In bilateral contract a promise by one party is exchanged for the promise of the other party (Duxbury R 1997). Where the both parties are bound to the contract.

    Unilateral contract

    In unilateral contract one party promise to do something in return for the act of the other party, the act is defined by the party making the promise (Duxbury R 1997).

    From the above definition we know that the case we are dealing (Nancy & Andy) may comes under unilateral contract. Nancy is the party who sets the contract, by makes the promise of offering 3000 for the safe return of the dog. Here safe return of the dog is the act set by Nancy.


    An offer is a legal commitment, a proposal which invites, indeed presupposes, eventual acceptance. (David oughton & Martin Davis 1997). The person who sets the offer is known as offeror and the person who accepts to the offer is known as offeree. Offer may be addressed to one particular person, a group of people or the world at large, as in an offer of a reward(Duxbury R 1997).

    In this case the advertisement made by Nancy can be considered as an offer and Nancy as an offeror and Andy is the offeree, the offer is an offer of reward which is addressed to the world at large.


    Accpetance may be defined as an unconditional assent, communicated by the offeree to the offeror, to all terms of the offer, made with the intention of accepting (Duxbury R 1997).

    Acceptance in unilateral contract: Acceptance of a unilateral offer need not be communicated, because performance is the same as acceptance (Carlill v Carbolic Smoke Ball Co.(1893) Turner C (2006)).

    Intention to be legally bounded

    The court have recognized that some agreements, by there nature, are not intended to be legally binding (Duxbury R 1997). The agreement does not become a binding contract unless the parties have shown, expressly or by implication, that they intended to create legal relations: Rose and Frank v. Crompton Bros.[1923]. (W T Major 1993).

    So basically an agreement was made between them and you over the land in question, I would say that could be construed as a contract and, therefore, you would be entitled to pursue a case of breach of that contract, which may in turn mean they cant sell anything until the matter is resolved.

    I would definitely seek proper legal advice though before doing anything else.

    Last edited by Morgy; 11-07-2013 at 18:45.

  3. #3
    Did Andy get the 3000 offered by Nancy for the return of her dog ?


  4. #4
    The more interesting question is whether Andy could say, "Bugger you then." and keep the dog.

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by AHPP View Post
    The more interesting question is whether Andy could say, "Bugger you then." and keep the dog.
    I was once told that POSSESSION was nine-tenths of the law. Having passed the beast to its owner he was screwed up and I suspect she was in breach of a published contract.


  6. #6
    I'd be inclined to be very close for a few days and have someone with their eyes on the property - Phone the police and report her for harassment and if she comes close to going in to move stuff, phone them and get them down to deal with a breach of the peace - I have little doubt that if she does not have a court order or a bailiff there (and she won't) then the police will warn her off removing your property by force.

    if she wants to get you and your stuff off the land, then she's going to have to go to court and evict you - but it may rely on you being there to stop her.

    Edit - ps. I think the area of law you'd be looking at is Estoppel
    Last edited by Labrat; 11-07-2013 at 22:15. Reason: ps

  7. #7
    Out of curiosity a few questions-
    1. Is the land in question seperate from their property or does it form a continuous part of their plot?
    2. Is the land registered or are there deeds covering the land in question? Can the lady in question actually prove ownership (joint ownership with her husband) of the disputed land.
    It's the calibre of the shooter that counts not the calibre of the rifle.

  8. #8
    If you've been using it as your own, unchallenged, for all that time, and if it's clearly separated from other peoples land (for example, fence or wall that you've erected) then you've got a good chance.
    Blimey, I know someone who successfully claimed ownership of the village football pitch because his sheep had been grazing it between matches, unchallenged, for 14 years! Everyone else though he was being kind and keeping the grass down!

  9. #9
    SD Regular
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    I do not think that many solicitors will advise you for free and as the worth of what you are disputing is of no small value you would be advised to seek legal advice for which you would be expected to pay.

    A has carried out work for on property owned by B - Redacres - but occupied by A over a long period of years.

    A claims that he was told by B that B promised he would give A the plot of land - Redacres - and the garage thereon (both owned by B) so that A could build a house on it at a future date in return for carrying out that work.

    This future date to be when B moved out of a house that B and C occupied on an adjacent piece of land - Greenacres - (also owned by B).

    A claims that this was an agreement, a promise, or a indeed a contract made by B in exchange for the work carried out by A at Redacres and Greenacres to the benefit of B.

    Some years after this C became estranged from B and vacated the property - Greenacres - leaving it occupied by B. Subsequently B became ill and moved out of the property - Greenacres - and C re-occupied it.

    C has now given A instruction to vacate the plot of land - Redacres - that he has occupied. As B intends to sell both Greenacres and Redacres.

    Advise A as to his rights and remedies, if any, against B and C.

    The issues are of contract, is there a contract? Work by A in exchange for being give ownership of Redacres at a latter date?

    Or is this a mere "promise" that cannot be enforced?

    But is it more than that and in fact a case of proprietary estoppel if not one of contract?

    A promise for A to do work for B in return for giving ownership of Redacres to A at a future date when B and C leave or sell Greenacres?

    A promise cannot be enforced in general terms in law. But under the doctrine of proprietary estoppel it can.

    So maybe you should re-consider about not wanting to pay a solicitor? And have them look at the matter in terms of proprietary estoppel.
    Last edited by enfieldspares; 12-07-2013 at 00:17.

  10. #10
    C could I suppose argue that A was paid for the work that he has carried out in the past in the form of having the use of the land rent free for X number of years?

    I would think that a lot will depend on what B says when he recovers and comes out of hospital. Is he for instance willing to confirm in writing that a promise was given to gift the land at a later date and was the land actually his to gift. Establish these facts first and then consult a solicitor if you think it worth it. I believe there may be a scheme in existance where solicitors provide a short initial consultation at little or no cost phone and find out but not before you have established a few firm facts first.
    It's the calibre of the shooter that counts not the calibre of the rifle.

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