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LondonlawyerJ, Solicitor
Category: Property Law
Satisfied Customers: 818
Experience:  Experienced solicitor
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My residential property is subject to a restrictive covenant

Customer Question

My residential property is subject to a restrictive covenant originally imposed by a company which went into liquidation in 1948. Is it possible that another company now has the benefit of that covenant by means of an assignation or as a successor in title ?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Property Law
Expert:  LondonlawyerJ replied 2 years ago.
Hello, I am a solicitor with 20 years experience. I will try to answer this for you.
The law relating to transmission of covenants is very complex I am afraid. Your conveyancer (a solicitor?) should have advised you about these issues at purchase.
Can you tell me.
what the covenant is?
when it was made?
who the original parties were?
how the existence of the covenant adversely affects you?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
It is dated 1922 and is a restrictive covenant by the original purchaser (Mr Bathurst) with the company (South Coast Land & Resort Company Ltd) it's successors in title and assigns. Companies House indicates the company went into liquidation in 1948.
The covenant itself requires that plot owners submit building plans to the company for approval prior to commencement of works.
Our property has been sold subject to contract. The purchaser on being advised of the RC has not exchanged on the agreed date and is awaiting advice from his solicitor. The solicitor apparently believes the benefit of the covenant has passed to St Modwens Properties Plc and has stated he is contacting the company. The covenant has no adverse effect on us except that it may impede the sale, since the purchaser wishes to extend the property.
The road and surrounding area are all apparently bound by the same RC, although much redevelopment has taken place since it was imposed. Title to our own property mentions a RC but no details are recorded. We have obtained copy of title to the adjacent property which does contain details and believe the same applies to our property. I have attached a copy.(The town of Peacehaven has an interesting history. It was the work of an early 20th century entrepreneur who bought the land and parcelled it into plots. He publicised it by means of a competition which gave land as a prize for naming the town. He founded the company mentioned in the RC.)
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
HelloWas my reply of any assistance to you ?
Expert:  LondonlawyerJ replied 2 years ago.
Yes it was it seemed that the section about successors in title could well mean it is still valid. What do your solicitors sy about it?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Our solicitors have been awaiting evidence of the transmission of benefit of the covenant through the years from the purchaser's solicitors and have done nothing else despite our urging. Consequently the buyer has now withdrawn. Due to the buyer's solicitor's approach to the third party he believes to have benefit of the covenant we will need to answer detailed questions from any future purchaser. For this we will need evidence if any exists that the South Coast Land & Resort Company Ltd "passed on" the benefit in some way. If it did not do this then presumably the covenant can be deemed to have lapsed. But how can we prove either scenario ?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Do you have any further advice ?