The Practical Lawyer


Electronic Communications Code – review

The Electronic Communications Code came into force on 28 December 2017. Its purpose is to make it easier for network operators to install and maintain apparatus such as phone masts, exchanges and cabinets on public and private land. 
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Recreational activity – can be an easement

An easement is a non-personal right exercised over land owned by another. They can be created in a number of ways, including formal grant, prescription, long use, custom or by the operation of s62 LPA 1925. 
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Cautions against first registration – a reminder

A caution against first registration is a form of protection for interests affecting unregistered land. Its effect is to require HMLR to give the person who has applied for the caution – the cautioner – notice of an application for first registration of the legal estate which the cautioner claims is affected by an interest to which they are entitled (and of an application for first registration of certain other estates).

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Prescriptive easement – protection

Prescription is the acquisition of a right through long use or enjoyment – the law presumes that the right was lawfully granted. There are three ways to acquire an easement by prescription:

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Proprietary estoppel – successful claim

Proprietary estoppel is a remedy which prevents the legal owner of a property from asserting their strict legal right in relation to that property when it would be unconscionable to allow him to do so. It is an equitable remedy which means that the court has a discretion whether or not to give relief. There are three elements which must be satisfied for a proprietary estoppel claim to succeed:

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Japanese knotweed – surveyor held liable

Japanese knotweed is a topic that will not go away. In a recent unreported case, a chartered surveyor was held liable in negligence for failing to discover knotweed on a property.

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Competition law – impact on land agreements

Since 2011, competition law applies to land agreements. Practitioners should keep in mind the fact that, like other transaction agreements, land agreements must be compliant with competition law.

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Village greens – wider implications

The CA has held that a working port is capable of being registered as a town or village green (TVG) under the Commons Act 2006.

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Fencing covenant – interpreted

The CA has reversed an earlier decision which held that a clause in a conveyance framed as a fencing covenant was capable of being a fencing easement.

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‘Highway’ – no single meaning

The SC has recently clarified the meaning of a highway.

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