The Estate of a wealthy individual faced a claim from a neighbour alleging that he was promised the gift of a valuable piece of land which separated the two large residential properties. The neighbour alleged that he had spent money on the land in reliance on the promise that it would be left to him.
The Executors were in dispute over how to respond to the claim so it was necessary to address the conflicts of interest arising from the probate issues before turning to the substantive claim based on the concept of promissory estoppel.
Although legal proceedings were threatened and the neighbour produced a considerable volume of witness evidence supporting the promise made, we were able to uncover valuable contrary evidence by searching the history of the property and establishing that the neighbour had compromised his claim when involved in an earlier dispute about the same land.
Faced with the contrary evidence obtained from historic Land Registry records, the neighbour withdrew his claim before any proceedings were issued.
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