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The of Walsh v Lonsdale - Case Study Example

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This study "The case of Walsh v Lonsdale" describes the conflict between equity and common law. By analyzing the case of Walsh v Lonsdale (1882), the writer tries to define the maxims of equity and discuss several measures that have been introduced into property law on equitable principles…
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The case of Walsh v Lonsdale
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Download file to see previous pages While equity and common law have traditionally remained separate bastions and equity was initially introduced to provide judicial flexibility in determining interests, it is increasingly testing the boundaries of common law, especially through means like the Walsh doctrine that allow equity to deem as enforced and completed, contractual provisions that may not have been fully completed under common law.
The term “equitable lease” arises when a property is a lease with an option to buy, which cannot be constituted as a sale since the title to the property remains with the seller and passes only after the specified purchase price has been paid. Thus the seller and buyer in this case have a landlord-tenant relationship, with the landlord remaining the effective owner of the property while the tenant builds equity in the property. In the event the tenant/buyer defaults on the payment of rent, the landlord/seller can have him evicted and this is where the “equitable lease” agreement may crop up. The tenant/buyer essentially requests the courts to rule in his favor, by using its “equitable” powers to declare that a lease agreement is as good as a sale and thereby establish his right to remain in possession of the property2.
Under common law, the obligation of the landlord will be to ensure that the tenant has the right to peaceful and exclusive possession of his property and he must not do “anything that substantially interferes with the tenant's title to or possession of the demised premises or with his ordinary and lawful enjoyment of the demised premises”3. But, under common law, there are remedies available to a landlord for any breach of contract through nonpayment of rent and more provisions allowable for the forfeiture of leases.
For example, a landlord could unilaterally terminate the contract in the event it is breached. ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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