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Thomas, Lawyer
Category: UK Property Law
Satisfied Customers: 7602
Experience:  BA (Hons), PgDip, Practising Solicitor
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Hello, I have split from my long term partner and we own a

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Hello, I have split from my long term partner and we own a property together. We have agreed to sell the property but he is telling me I won't get anything from the profits left after the mortgage is settled although the mortgage is in both our names. He is saying as he has paid the mortgage I have not contributed so I am not entitled to anything. Can you help me establish where I stand in this matter.
Thanks for your question.
To enable me to answer your question could you please respond to the following:-
1. Did you execute a declaration of trust stating that you each own specific percentage interests in the property?
Kind regards.
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
No we didn't

Kind regards Lisa

Thanks for your reply.

Unless there is a declaration of trust (for which you must hold your property as tenants in common) then there is a presumption that each party retains a 50% interest in the equity in the property .A declaration of trust (had you executed one) would state that you hold your interests in the properties in specified percentage shares and it could also say that each person only retains their 50% interest in the property subject to equal contributions to the relevant outgoings for the property. If you had not equally contributed during this time then you would be able to claim greater than 50% of the equity.

This is not the case and therefore there is a presumption that you each hold 50% of the property and are therefore entitled to an equal division of the proceeds of sale of the property (ie. the equity – the profits).

It is possible to claim greater than 50% of the equity in the property by litigating under the Trusts of Land and Appointment of Trustees Act if it can be shown that you intended to keep your finances separate and it would be totally inequitable for a 50% interest to be enforce, but this is a very specialised area of law and the legal fees are very expensive so he would have to consider whether it is worth it to pursue in view of the likely profits that could be realised.

As it stands though, the presumption is that you are entitled to 50%. You should resist his posturing for the time being and see if he attempts to formalise things. Chances are that he has taken advice, hasn’t liked it and has tried his luck.

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Kind regards,

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