It is predominantly established fact that there has been a noteworthy boost in the figure of heterosexual or homosexual partners cohabiting outside marriage in the past three decades in the United Kingdom. Cohabitation has become the standard for a considerable fraction of the people in England and Wales and the increase in cohabitation is a phenomenon not restricted by the law makers. This trend recommends that cohabitation presupposes a better connotation in people’s life cycles, although it may still be untimely to aver that it ought to be observed as functionally corresponding to marriage. Nevertheless, the eminent intensity of optimistic misapprehension by cohabitants of their genuine legal position is conceivably further upsetting. There is evidence of a wide spread myth of the ‘common law marriage’ in which the cohabitants thought that unmarried couples acquire the same legal rights as married couples after a period of cohabitation. The assiduousness of the idea that the concept of ‘common law marriage’ still subsists is yet again predictable, even though it was put an end to in 1753 when marriage law was codified in England and Wales. The couples who consider themselves as common law husbands or wives nowadays recognise that they are in effect not married but are avowing instead that they have the equivalent privileges as if they were although it has to be distinguished that a ‘common law marriage’ was a legitimate nuptial. Cohabitants possibly will anticipate the European Court of Human Rights to rule that a cohabiting relationship outside marriage ought to be conferred acknowledgement in law and that a clear breach of complying with it engages a violation of Article 8 together with Article 14 of the European Convention on Human Rights. Conversely, the European Commission sustained the right of member states to grant lesser privileges to unmarried couples than married couples with the genuine endeavour of safeguarding the conventional family whilst recognising that the cohabitants of heterosexual or homosexual partners may have a ‘family life’ collectively under Article 8. Hence forth, the European Court has affirmed that a state may perhaps persist to create a peculiarity between the spouses and the cohabitants in the extent of its rightful safeguards. As a result, the inter vivos disputes between unmarried cohabiting couples are still synchronized by the ordinary law. Lately, these disputes have turned out to be progressively more perceptible because to a greater extent couples cohabit without lawful wedlock. LEGAL PRINCIPLES OF BENEFICIAL OWNERSHIP
In the olden days, the typical model of land ownership in the Great Britain was that the estate in land was vested in one person as sole beneficial owner. The ‘family home’ whether leasehold or freehold tended to be held by the man who was back then regarded as head of the household. However, changes in social conditions and in particular the alteration in the status of women, have meant that today sole ownership has become more rare and that it is normal for domestic property to be the subject of co-ownership. Co-ownership may be created deliberately either because the property is conveyed to two or more person as co-owners or may arise by operation of law as for instance where one person contributes to the purchase price of property bought by another and thus acquires an beneficial interest in the property under an implied trust. Virtually all forms of co-ownership of land nowadays operate in conjunction with a trust of land regulated by the Trusts of Land and Appointment of Trustees Act 1996 (TOLATA 1996). In modern law, there are two types of co-ownership which are the joint tenancy and the tenancy in common respectively. The joint tenancy is, in a way, the more perfect of the two types of co-ownership. It is a form of co-ownership in which each joint tenant is said to be wholly...
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