Is adverse possession a dead duck? Pye v Graham

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Is adverse possession a dead duck? Pye v Graham

Postby Conveyancer » Sun Feb 05, 2006 4:16 pm

1 – Decisions of the European Court (EC) do no change the law of the UK. The European case was between the Pyes (who lost in the English Courts) and the UK government. The EC decided that the Pyes were unfairly deprived of their land. The government compensate the Pyes. The Grahams (who won in the English Courts) get to keep the land.

2 – the EC case related to the law as it was before the law changed when the Land Registration Act 2002 (LRA) came into force. There is a strong suggestion that the fact that the UK law had been changed was the clincher in a decision against the UK Government; it was assumed that it had been recognised that the old law was unfair. Essentially, under the old law an owner was deprived of his title automatically by operation of law without any judicial or quasi-judicial enquiry. The position is now different in respect of registered land. You cannot be registered as an adverse possessor of land without notice being given to the registered proprietor who is given an opportunity to object. If the objection is successful, the registered proprietor has two years to take possession proceedings against the adverse possessor; failure to do so will lead to a second application for registration by the adverse possessor succeeding. The law is now “claim it back or lose it”.

3 – The LRA did not change the law relating to unregistered land. Here an adverse possessor may still acquire title without notice being served on the “true” owner. No doubt the law should be changed to allow for notice requirements similar to those in the LRA with appropriate provisions where the owner is unknown.

4 – Until the law is changed by Parliament it is “as you were”, but with the obvious possibility that if you are half way through "adversely possessing" the goal posts may move.
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Postby Angelisle » Sun Feb 05, 2006 4:43 pm

This post/information Conveyancer is worthy of a Sticky
:)
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Postby syckend » Sun Feb 05, 2006 6:17 pm

Conveyancer's post gives a succinct resume of the relevant facts. For those who want to study the subject in greater detail, they will find almost everything they want to know about adverse possession by clicking the link below to the House of Lords Appeal in Pye case. It gives a comprehensive review of all relevant cases and decisions involving adverse possession.

Judgments - J A Pye (Oxford) Ltd and Others v Graham and Another on 4 July 2002
http://www.parliament.the-stationery-of ... aham-1.htm
I advise as an experienced layman whose dispute via Courts lasted 5+yrs. Try to avoid this route©
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Postby Conveyancer » Sun Oct 15, 2006 8:44 am

There still seem to be some who think the law has changed as a result of Pye v Graham. The Land Registry agree that there has been no change in the law. See here: http://www.landregistry.gov.uk/assets/library/documents/lrpg005_addendum.pdf
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Postby Conveyancer » Sat Dec 02, 2006 7:27 pm

Just found this observation by a judge in a recent case:

… it is to some extent implicit in the present law of adverse possession, that an owner of property who makes no use of it, whatever, should be expected to keep an eye on the property to ensure that adverse possession rights are not being clocked up. A period of 12 years is a long period during which to neglect a property completely.
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Postby rosemarynothyme » Tue Jan 02, 2007 4:32 pm

There are observers who may well have noted which way the wind of change was blowing following the case of Beaulane Properties Limited v Palmer (ChD) The times, 13 April 2005. Mr Palmer occupied registered land close to Heathrow Airport. He used the land to graze horses some of which belonged to him and some to other people. He had been using the land for 12 years before applying in 2003 under section 75 of the Land Registration Act 1925 to be registered with possessory title. Until that time, Beaulane Properties Limited had allowed Mr Palmer to use the land. Palmer’s application, of course, prompted Beaulane to commence proceedings for possession of the land.

In his judgment Deputy Judge Nicholas Strauss QC accepted that Mr Palmer had occupied the land for the necessary 12 years. The other crucial factor to be proved in establishing adverse possession is that of “intention to possess”. On this point, however, the Learned Judge looked back over to the previous line of cases and came to the view that Mr Palmer’s claim must fail, as his claim did not truly run until it could be shown that his use or intended use of the land conflicted with that of the true owners Beaulane, The position here was that Beaulane had no immediate plans to use the land and were content to allow Mr Palmer to use the land.

ADVERSE POSSESSION: WHAT’S CHANGED?
by DESIREE ARTESI, Barrister

http://www.3djb.co.uk/page58.html
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Postby rosemarynothyme » Wed Jan 03, 2007 2:31 pm

Because Beaulane had no immediate plans for the land and was content to allow him to remain on the land, P was unable to show that his use was inconsistent. The claim therefore failed.

Comment

This case only affects registered land. Occupiers of unregistered titles can still apply for possessory title by establishing occupation for a continuous period of 12 years and satisfying the requirements under the Land Registration Act 2002.

Because the Human Rights Act 1998 is not retrospective, occupiers of registered land who can prove 12 years' occupation prior to 2 October 2000 are not affected by Beaulane. They can continue to rely on Pye.

Where an occupier relies on occupation between 2 October 2000 and 13 October 2003, the date that the Land Registration Act 2002 came into force, the Land Registry has issued a practice note. The note states that it will require evidence that the occupation is inconsistent with the use or intended use of the land by the landowner.

If the occupier cannot prove 12 years' occupation prior to 13 October 2003, then the new, more onerous provisions of the Land Registration Act 2002 will apply.


http://www.legal500.com/devs/uk/cp/ukcp_281.htm
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Postby horse » Fri Nov 16, 2007 3:49 pm

A small section of land, which was Adversely possesed, joins on to a property with registered Title. Unfortunatly the property was repossesed and sold by the bank.New owners took possesion of the whole plot. The owners now find after over ten years that they do not hold title to the small section of land. The registered owners of the small plot, are still registered to the same address (which they havn't lived at for over 10 years) at the Land Registry and they have no access to the plot.
Any advice please if it can now be re-adversley possesed and if so under what section:Schedule 6, paragraph 5(2) (3) or (4)
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Postby Conveyancer » Fri Jan 04, 2008 1:58 am

The decision of the ECR has been reversed by the ECHR.

For a summary, see here: http://tinyurl.com/2eq4lq

For the full judgment, see here: http://tinyurl.com/ytemtu
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Postby jsimpson » Fri Jun 06, 2008 8:26 pm

Hi,

First time post - with the overturn for unregistered land, what is the current situation regarding adverse possession of registered land where the occupier had not demonstrated 10 years occupation before 2 October 2000, e.g. occupied since mid-1991.

In particular, two neighbouring domestic properties where back garden land on the title of neighbour A is occupied by neighbour B and neighbour B wants to occupy the land on his title, i.e. consistent use.

John
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Re: Is adverse possession a dead duck? Pye v Graham

Postby mrsyardbroom » Thu May 03, 2012 7:25 pm

We've been using a piece of land for 28 years and cannot find the owner in spite of our best efforts. We appear to fulfill all the conditions of adverse possession. I would love to obtain a title on the land but solicitors charge £150 an hour. It's far too much for us to pay. Is it possible to do it yourself? I've downloaded all the forms from the LRA.
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Re: Is adverse possession a dead duck? Pye v Graham

Postby Conveyancer » Fri May 04, 2012 10:58 am

Yes you can do it yourself, but you risk getting it wrong.

Getting registered is nice, but the question you need to ask is whether there is any real benefit in getting registered if you have no intention of selling. If you have been in occupation for 28 years, the chances of the paper owner turning up now must be low.

How large is the area of land?
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Re: Is adverse possession a dead duck? Pye v Graham

Postby jane1 » Sun Mar 09, 2014 12:22 pm

hi
my friend has been using a piece of land next to there property
for the last 30yrs which they belived to be theres
they have now received a letter from there local council to say planning has been received
for the land.
have they got a claim.
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Re: Is adverse possession a dead duck? Pye v Graham

Postby MacadamB53 » Sun Mar 09, 2014 9:33 pm

jane1 wrote:hi
my friend has been using a piece of land next to there property
for the last 30yrs which they belived to be theres
they have now received a letter from there local council to say planning has been received
for the land.
have they got a claim.

Hi jane,

You need to start your own thread.

Kind regards, Mac
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Re: Is adverse possession a dead duck? Pye v Graham

Postby ukmicky » Mon Mar 10, 2014 5:37 pm

MacadamB53 wrote:
jane1 wrote:hi
my friend has been using a piece of land next to there property
for the last 30yrs which they belived to be theres
they have now received a letter from there local council to say planning has been received
for the land.
have they got a claim.

Hi jane,

You need to start your own thread.

Kind regards, Mac



Yes there is a chance they could have a claim so do as Mac has said and start your own thread
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