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Family Law
Residential Property
CPD Points:
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  • FREE
30 minutes of audio
(+ optional 5 minute online quiz)
Plays on Computer:
Yes Downloadable as MP3:    Yes
Course Aims:

This podcast provides an overview of the current laws pertaining to the property rights of co-habitants once they have separated. This podcast will be of use to practitioners that deal with co-habitant rights and also those who are just starting to practice in the area. It will also provide a useful insight into the Law Commission's proposals and the advantages and disadvantages of these proposals.

After completing the course you will:
  • Understand how the case law relating to the issue of cohabitation rights stood before the House of Lords' ruling in Stack v Dowden;
  • Know the facts of Stack v Dowden;
  • Gain a detailed understanding of the Lords' rulings in Stack v Dowden and the reasoning behind them;
  • Understand the possible problems arising from these rulings;
  • Understand who will be affected by these rulings and how they have changed the law;
  • Know the Law Commission's proposals on the reform of Cohabitation law and the property rights of cohabitants;
  • Understand the possible advantages and disadvantages of the Law Commission's proposals;
  • Understand the process of creating a cohabitation agreement and the enforceability of such an agreement.
Specialist Difficulty: 5 of 5
Case Update
Practical Guide
Sources and References:
  • Matrimonial Causes Act 1973;
  • Stack v Dowden [2007] UKHL, [2007] 1 FLR 1858;
  • Pettitt v Pettitt [1970] AC 777;
  • Gissing v Gissing [1971] AC 886;
  • Oxley v Hiscock [2004] EWCA Civ 546;
  • Goodman v Gallant [1986] 2 WLR 236;
  • Land Registration Act 2002;
  • Law Commission consultation paper: "Cohabitation: The Financial Consequences of Relationship Breakdown" (Law Com No 307 (TSO 2007));
  • Children Support Act 1991;
  • Children Act 1989.

In this CPDCast, Richard Campbell discusses the property rights of co-habitants once they have separated by examining both the most recent case law, namely the House of Lords case Stack v Dowden [2007] UKHL 17, and the possible future reforms of the law as proposed by the Law Commission in it's consultation paper "Cohabitation: The Financial Consequences of Relationship Breakdown." Practical advice is given on what can be done presently to bring clarity to a couples' property rights.

Podcast Added: 16/12/2008

Podcast last reviewed: 2011-06-30

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