Welcome to today’s Chamberlains Selection, where we will discuss with James d’Apice on the matter of Groch v Knights [2018] NSWSC 1365. We will talk about the division of proceeds of a sold block of land after the separation of the owners.

Two former lovers jointly owned a piece of land. The relationship ended with one co-owner moving away. After a time the other co-owner did too, though not voluntarily. (He was imprisoned.) The co-owner who left first applied for s66G orders appointing trustees to sell the property and divide the proceeds between the co-owners. A properly prepared application like this will almost always succeed. The imprisoned respondent co-owner said the orders would be unfair. Sadly for him, unfairness is not a basis to reject a s66G application: [33] Trustees for sale were appointed. Our applicant wanted more than a 50/50 share of the sale proceeds. She said that she’d paid the mortgage and council rates and so should get more: [19] The respondent said he’d made improvements and so should get more: [28] As it happened, neither party presented a full and adequate case for their allowances. Making orders about that issue without more evidence would do a disservice to both of them: [60] A sale was ordered, with the issue of allowances to wait for another day: [64]