On selling the family farm

Last week, Lord Justice Hamblen granted permission on the papers to appeal the decision of the Deputy High Court Judge in The Matter of Kingsley Bros (a firm) [2019] EWHC 1073 (Ch). The appeal will decide the extent to which sections 14 and 15 of the Trusts of Land and Appointment of Trustees Act 1996 (“TOLATA”) allow the courts to permit one co-owner to purchase the jointly-owned property at a stated price where there is real doubt as to the true market value of that property. It will revisit the Court of Appeal’s decision in Bagum v Hafiz [2015] EWCA Civ 801 and consider the extent to which the courts’ discretionary powers under TOLATA are compatible with co-owners’ rights under Article 1 of the ECHR.

Under separate grounds the appeal will also consider when the surviving partner of a (dissolved) farming partnership ceases to continue the business for the purposes of winding it up under the decision in Lie v. Mohile [2014] EWHC 3709 (Ch) and so becomes personally liable to pay an occupation rent.

Clifford Darton QC and Christopher Burrows are acting for the Appellants instructed by Brian Donnan and Claire Iacovou of Edward Harte solicitors. The first instance judgment can be found here