Our Litigation Services

TOLATA Claims: Frequently Asked Questions

If you haven’t already, read our TOLATA Claim page, which features a guide to the process, the biggest client concerns, as well as what documents you need to begin your claim.

I don’t know how much of a property I own - can I find out?

How much you own will depend on whether you own the property with your co-owner as joint tenants or tenants in common. If you do not know, we can find out by checking the title register and or speaking with the conveyors who dealt with your purchase.

I co-own a house I do not occupy - can it be sold?

If one co-owner refuses to sell you are entitled to seek a court order for it to be sold, so you can receive your share of the sale proceeds. What the court decides will depend on the situation and who occupies the property.

I haven’t lived in a property I own for a long time - can I claim any money per month from my co-owner?

Where one party has been “ousted” from a property they own, they can sometimes obtain a sum from the co-owner in occupation to account for this, which is called “occupation rent”. This is often calculated on average rental values and adjusted for ownership shares.

Will the court consider who has paid the mortgage and our finances?

The court will often offset mortgage payments against occupation rent and will look in detail at the parties’ financial arrangements as part of “equitable accounting”. This is done to determine the impact that any finances contributed to the property may have on ownership.

What will happen if the court orders a sale but my co-owner refuses to move?

If the court orders a sale and the other party refuses, this will be a breach of a court order and you will be able to force a sale and evict the other party to vacate if the court so orders.

How much does a TOLATA claim cost?

We understand that legal expenses are an important factor for our clients. We offer initial one-off fixed-fee consultations to provide initial advice upfront, allowing you to decide whether you want to proceed. We will give your information about your prospects of success, timescales and likely costs. Once you have instructed us to act for you, we will keep you regularly updated and provide transparent cost estimates for each stage, with fixed fees available where applicable.

How do you win a TOLATA claim?

Winning a TOLATA claim requires thorough preparation, effective advocacy and a clear understanding of your legal rights and obligations. Working with our experienced legal professionals can significantly increase your chances of success whilst reducing additional charges and minimising stress.

Is there a time limit to start a TOLATA claim?

There is no time limit, you can start one whenever you feel ready.

Can you take TOLATA claims to the small claims court?

No, TOLATA claims cannot be taken to the small claims court. The small claims court is typically for claims under £10,000, whereas TOLATA claims often involve non-monetary issues. TOLATA claims are governed by Civil Procedure Rules (CPR). If you ask us we can tell which set of Court Procedure Rules would apply to your claim.

What is a Part 36 offer in TOLATA claims?

A Part 36 offer is an offer made during legal proceedings to reach a settlement. If made in accordance with specific rules, it carries cost consequences if refused by the opposing party (depending on the case’s final outcome). Part 36 offers are valuable in attempting a settlement without compromising your case and can be made at various stages of the proceedings, including before they begin. These offers can include requests for clarification and can be withdrawn or have terms changed – but only if the other party has not accepted them yet.

What is Section 14 TOLATA - Trusts of Land and Appointment of Trustees Act 1996

Section 14 of TOLATA empowers the Court to make any order requiring the property trustees to do anything that can be done by property trustees. This includes ordering the sale or preventing the sale of a property. It also allows the Court to decide the extent of a person’s interest in the property, i.e. to decide what share of the proceeds of sale a person should receive.

Like to Know More?

Contact us today by calling our phone on 01273 604 123, emailing us at enquire@bbc-law.co.uk or make an enquiry. We can arrange an initial meeting or call with you. If you are ready to start the process then we will tell you what information and documents we would like to see and then arrange a meeting or call with you to talk about them and agree how you want to proceed.

Daisy Tester

Daisy works in our Litigation team and is Head of Contentious Probate and Estates.

Read More About Daisy
From the first call I made to Burt Brill & Cardens, I found the service both courteous and reassuring. In particular Daisy Tester is a credit to the firm. She provided clear advice, acted promptly and resolved my issue to a very satisfactory conclusion. Thank you Daisy. The firm came to me on a personal recommendation and I would be happy to provide the same recommendation without hesitation. Just excellent all round!
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