Normative foundations of intimate partner constructive trusts

Kathrine Galloway

Research output: Contribution to journalOnline ResourceProfessional


[Extract] On 5-6 December the Melbourne Law School is hosting a Trusts Conference at which I will be presenting. Here are the speaker notes and powerpoints for my presentation.
'Distribution, Redistribution or Maintaining the Status Quo? The Normative Foundations of Intimate Partner Constructive Trusts'
Judgments concerning intimate partner constructive trusts often claim not to effect a redistribution of property as between the legal and beneficial owners. Yet despite looking at the parties’ respective contributions and the context of their relationship, the courts’ findings embody assumptions about justice and the value of labor within marriage-like relationships. Therefore in finding a constructive trust and determining the date at which it arose, it is at least arguable that the courts are themselves allocating property interests. This paper examines key Australian decisions on intimate partner constructive trusts to identify and critique possible justificatory norms on which contemporary doctrine in this area is founded.

This paper is part of a larger project: my PhD research which is a feminist analysis of equitable proprietary interests in intimate partner constructive trusts. The focus of this presentation is property - rather than the other remedies available in the context of applications for declaration of a constructive trust (such as an account of profits, or a trust over sale proceeds). Property is valorised in our system. It offers security against third parties, the opportunity for capital gain and a right of possession - particularly important when there is a home at stake.
Original languageEnglish
JournalCurl: Property law, women and law, contemporary legal issues
Publication statusPublished - 4 Dec 2013


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