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Property Law Journal: 23 January 2012
John Starr

John Starr reviews the role of an adjudicator following recent case law

The 1996 Construction Act gives the parties to a construction contract the right to refer their disputes to adjudication at any time. However, it goes on to say that the decision of the adjudicator is binding until the dispute is finally determined by legal proceedings, by arbitration or by agreement. The Scheme, which supports the Act, says that an adjudicator must resign where the dispute referred to them is the same, or substantially the same, as one that has previously been decided upon in an adjudication.

Simon Ricketts and Meeta Kaur provide a planning perspective on the Portas Review, and find some inherent contradictions

The government’s proposed planning reforms seek to walk a tightrope between encouraging economic growth and giving greater power to local communities. There can be tensions between the two, which can be seen both in the Localism Act (see last month’s PLJ planning column for more details) and in the draft National Planning Policy Framework, as well as the media coverage that has followed.

Graeme Fraser and Adam Colenso explain the nature and timing of advice that residential property lawyers should provide to cohabitant buyers in light of Jones v Kernott and the SRA Code of Conduct 2011.

Evolving social trends in England and Wales mean that growing numbers of people cohabit together without marrying or entering into a civil partnership. Where there is no recorded agreement how the beneficial interest is to be held, disputes may well occur where one party wishes to sell the property, but the other party wishes to remain in the family home until the children have grown up, or where one party wants to move out because of the emotional trauma of splitting up but wants to eliminate the risk that their equity in the property will remain indefinitely locked up.

Fladgate LLP

Huw Witty and Julian Lewis assess how BPRA has been used to date and how it could usefully be extended

A Business Property Renovation Allowance (BPRA) is available pursuant to a special regime that allows building owners to claim enhanced capital allowances on expenditure, that is incurred on unused commercial buildings to bring them back into commercial use. They have three functions:

Forsters LLP

Lucy Barber reviews a recent case where the court was required to consider whether the owners of houseboats held as tenants or as licensees?

In the normal course of property transactions, when buyers purchase a freehold the buyer will assume, quite rightly, that they are also purchasing the ground upon which the house is situated. It is a long-established principle that when you buy the freehold of a property, you own the ground beneath it and the airspace unless these areas are expressly excluded.

Jane Rogers looks at the latest litigation involving beer ties

In November 2006 I wrote an article for this journal that was published with the title ‘Crehan – the end of the beer tie saga’ (PLJ180, p19). This marked the end of a marathon court case that had been to the European Court and back and ended with the judgment of the Supreme Court (or the House of Lords as it then was). However it was not, in fact, the end of the saga as subsequent litigation has demonstrated.