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Relationship Property

This category contains 37 posts

David and Goliath?

Pertinent facts: On first blush Biggs v Biggs has the appearance of a David and Goliath style contest.   Nation J refers at [10] to the 2300 pages of documents that have had to be considered and at [11] notes that when claims are pursued “in a particular way, there can be scant recognition of the … Continue reading

A cleft in the armour of joint ownership?

When two people own a property jointly, what is legally referred to as being joint tenants (as distinct from tenants in common, where each party owns only a set percentage of an asset), and where one of the two joint owner dies, the survivor inherits the interest of the other joint tenant. There is no … Continue reading

How afraid should we be of Clayton?

The Supreme Court decision in Clayton v Clayton changed the trust landscape.  But how afraid should we be?  Are all trusts vulnerable to Clayton-style challenge?  Or just the ones that push the envelope?  And, if the latter, how far can one push before there is a problem? A recent decision of Moore J has provided … Continue reading

What makes a settlement nuptial?

Following the Supreme Court decision in Clayton v Clayton (Claymark Trust) fresh light has been shed upon the scope of s 182 of the Family Proceedings Act 1980 in the case of Da Silva v Da Silva. By way of background s 182 gives the Court the discretion following divorce (the section does not apply to de facto relationships)  … Continue reading

$10,000 per year for contributions to trust

The decision in Judd v Hawkes Bay Trustee Company Limited (see Another tributary in the trickle of constructive trust cases) has been upheld on appeal. By way of background  Richard Hodgkinson and Michelle Judd were married for six and a half years. Over that period they lived in a property in Lane Road, Havelock North, … Continue reading

Relationship property review

The Property (Relationships) Act 1976 (the Act) is now under review as part of a significant project that will involve consultation with the public and key stakeholders.  The outcome of the review is to be reported back the Minister of Justice in November 2018.  See Law Commission to review Property (Relationships) Act 1976. Not surprisingly … Continue reading

The Supreme Court Writes Back

The long-awaited decision (issued in fact as two separate decisions) in Clayton v Clayton were released today (23 March 2016). The first decision relates to the Vaughan Road Property Trust (VRPT) and the second to the Claymark Trust. Background Mr and Mrs Clayton commenced a de facto relationship in 1986 and married in 1989. They … Continue reading

You can run, but you can’t hide

Relationships end.  Sometimes badly.  Few amongst us can remember what we saw in the other.  Usually we move on.  Bruises are dusted.  The property is divided up, each thinks the other got more than they should have.    Some of us are made of stronger stuff.  Relationship property assets under the control of a single party to the … Continue reading

Love lost

When who stopped loving who first is lost to the antiquities of time, for modern lovers there is still the trust to keep them shackled together. And what a shackle, and what expense… Whittle v Whittle is another tale of love lost but the Trust, if not the trust, remaining.  In this case the pesky … Continue reading

Buyer’s remorse

The expression “Beware Greeks bearing gifts” as been attributed to  the story of the wooden horse of Troy, used by the Greeks to trick their way into the city. It is recorded in Virgil’s Aeneid, Book 2, 19 BC: “Do not trust the horse, Trojans. Whatever it is, I fear the Greeks even when they … Continue reading