1500 CANNON V

Topics: Marriage, Trust law, Husband Pages: 9 (4865 words) Published: December 18, 2014
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ICLR: Chancery Division/1949/CANNON v. HARTLEY. - [1949] Ch. 213 [1949] Ch. 213
[CHANCERY DIVISION]

CANNON v. HARTLEY.

1948 Nov. 19, 22.
ROMRE J.
Settlement - Deed of separation - Covenant to settle after-acquired property - Breach of covenant Volunteer's right to claim for damages. A volunteer who is a party to a deed and a direct covenantee thereunder is entitled to damages for breach of a covenant contained in the deed.

By a deed of separation made on January 23, 1941, between the defendant of the first part, his wife of the second part and the plaintiff, their daughter, of the third part, the defendant covenanted, inter alia, "If and whenever during the lifetime of the wife or the daughter the husband shall become entitled .... under the will or codicil .... of either of his parents .... to any money or property exceeding in net amount or value 1,000l. he will forthwith at his own expense .... settle one-half of such money or property upon trust for himself for life and for the wife for life after his death and subject thereto in trust for the daughter absolutely ...." In 1944 the defendant became entitled, subject to a prior life interest therein of his mother, to a quarter share of a fund of approximately 50,000l. The defendant's wife died in 1946. The defendant refused to execute a settlement in accordance with the said covenant. On a claim by the plaintiff for damages for breach of the covenant:Held, that the plaintiff was entitled to damages. In re Pryce [1917] 1 Ch. 234 and In re Kay's Settlement [1939] Ch. 329 distinguished. Action.

By a deed of separation dated January 23, 1941, and made between the defendant, Bernard Charles Hartley, of the first
[1949] Ch. 213 Page 214
part, Violet Hartley his wife of the second part and the plaintiff their daughter, then Joyce Violet Hartley (afterwards Mrs. Cannon) of the third part, the defendant and his wife agreed to live apart by reason of unhappy differences which had arisen between them. The deed further witnessed: "In pursuance of the said agreement and in consideration of the matters hereinafter appearing the husband and the wife hereby mutually covenant with each other and declare as follows and he hereby covenants also separately with the daughter in the terms of cll. 4, 5, 6 and 7 hereof." By cl. 7 the defendant covenanted: "If and whenever during the lifetime of the wife or the daughter

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the husband shall become entitled at one and the same time by gift inter vivos, from or under the will or codicil, or on the intestacy of either of his parents or any other person to any money or property exceeding in net amount or value 1,000l. he will forthwith at his own expense and to the satisfaction of the wife and the daughter or the survivor of them settle one half of such money or property upon trust for himself for life and for the wife for life after his death and subject thereto in trust for the daughter absolutely ...." By the will of his father, who died on December 3, 1944, the defendant became absolutely entitled, subject to a prior life interest therein of his mother, to a quarter share of a fund of approximately 50,000l. The defendant's wife died on June 23, 1946. The defendant at all times refused to execute a settlement in accordance with cl. 7, and the plaintiff (the daughter) claimed damages for breach of the said covenant. It was conceded that there was no consideration moving from the part of the plaintiff.

It was contended for the defendant, in reliance on In re Hughes (1) that his reversionary interest under his father's will, though admittedly worth more than 1,000l., was not "money or property" within the meaning of cl. 7. Romer J. in a preliminary judgment held that the question was one of construction to be decided on the language used by the parties. In his opinion, on the language of cl. 7 of this particular document, the reversionary interest to which the defendant had become entitled was property within the...
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