Last updateTue, 24 Feb 2015 5pm

Property Law Journal: March 2015
John Starr

John Starr reviews two cases where adjudicators were alleged to have produced unenforceable decisions by reason of lack of jurisdiction or a failure to comply with the rules of natural justice

When can an adjudicator’s decision be challenged? Two recent cases indicate that attempts to argue for a lack of jurisdiction or otherwise are likely to fail.

The Land Registry’s radical new approach to mapping leasehold title plans takes some getting used to, warns Bill Chandler, but ultimately represents a workable compromise

Let me start by declaring that I am a massive fan of the Land Registry. I admire the engagement they have sought with their customers over recent years, I have experienced first-hand the benefits of customer teams and I have embraced innovative new services such as the excellent ‘Mapsearch’ facility and the game-changing electronic Document Registration Service, or eDRS.

Martin Codd assesses the outcome of two recent decisions highlighting the complexities of leasebacks on collective enfranchisement claims

Two recent cases heard in the Upper Tribunal (Lands Chamber) have highlighted the need for landlords and tenants to consider more carefully the terms of any leaseback when dealing with a collective claim brought under Part 1 of the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 (the 1993 Act).

Robert Barham considers a case which caused the court to review a long-forgotten law

The London Squares Preservation Act 1931 has been on the statute book for over 80 years but there has not, so far as anyone can recall, been a case on it until now. On 10 February 2015 the planning court of the Queen’s Bench Division of the High Court handed down its judgment in the case of R (on the application of Eliterank Ltd) v Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea [2015]. The decision in that case proves that, despite its obscurity and the fact that it appears to have been largely forgotten about, the 1931 Act is still very much valid and needs to be taken into account by anyone considering development in, under or adjacent to one of the squares that is protected by the Act.

Tim Troman argues against the abolition of manorial rights and considers the recent report by the House of Commons Justice Select Committee

For some, the very phrase ‘manorial rights’ conjures up a distant time in the Middle Ages when land was carved up between feudal lords of the manor. As well as owning vast tracts of land, these lords had wide powers over village affairs – including collecting taxes for the king and imposing the death penalty.

How are planning applications for renewable energy projects dealt with, and why are such a high number the subject of intervention by the Secretary of State? Samantha Grange reports on the current state of play

In June 2008, following a review promised in the white paper ‘Planning for a Sustainable Future’ (May 2007), ‘proposals of major significance for the government’s climate change programme and energy policies’ were added to the Secretary of State’s policy on recovering planning appeals. Five years later, in June 2013, the Secretary of State announced his intention to issue new planning practice guidance for renewable and low-carbon energy projects and recovered nine projects at appeal in England.

Serle Court

The Competition and Markets Authority will be probing possible violations of UK competition law relating to estate agents’ fees. Suzanne Rab explains the CMA’s concerns

The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has announced that it will probe as a priority suspected anti-competitive agreements involving three companies and a trade association operating in property sales and lettings. The investigation targets possible violations of UK competition law relating to the setting and advertising of fees by estate agents. The CMA has concerns that the arrangements restricted choice for consumers and their ability to compare prices and value for money.