Chapter

Lady Summerskill takes charge

Lord Denning

in The Due Process of Law

Published in print January 1980 | ISBN: 9780406176080
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191705113 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780406176080.003.0033
Lady Summerskill takes charge

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There was uproar at the decision of the Lords which was discussed in the previous chapter. There was pressure on all hands for legislation to reverse it. Baroness Summerskill took a leading part. She was one of the first ladies to be made a baroness in her own right. She introduced a Bill to ‘amend the law of England and Wales as to the right of a husband or wife to occupy a dwelling-house which has been the matrimonial home’. This law made it clear that a deserted wife had a right to stay in the matrimonial home. But it only gave her this right subject to a very important limitation. She was only protected as against a purchaser if she had registered a charge in the Land Register. So ends the story of the deserted wife. Her equity — a judicial innovation — was destroyed: but, by legislation, a Class F charge was created to replace it.

Keywords: Baroness Summerskill; House of Lords; matrimonial home; deserted wife; Land Register; equity

Chapter.  1730 words. 

Subjects: Constitutional and Administrative Law

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