The distinction between an equitable lease and a legal lease lies in its creation and no further. Discuss.
Identify the circumstances in which a legal lease arises and how these differ from the circumstances / formalities for the creation of equitable leases.
- Consider the position of s 52 LPA 1925 and the requirement of a deed for creation of legal leases. Explain deed requirements (s 1 LP(MP)A 1989) and the necessity to register if over 7 years (ss 4 and 27 LRA 2002).
- Consider the exemption for leases of three years or less, perhaps with a focus upon periodic leases: s 52(2) LPA 1925; Prudential Assurance v London Residuary Body (1992).
- Consider the circumstances as to when an equitable lease may arise. This discussion may include looking at agreements to grant leases and looking at leases granted in the absence of legal formalities. What formalities must be complied with? Analyse s 2 LP(MP)A 1989; Walsh v Lonsdale (1882). Clearly contrast these formalities with those of creation of legal leases. Recognize that legal and equitable leases may arise under the same circumstances (where legal formalities have failed) but that equity prevails.
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