Proprietary Rights in Matrimony: A Call for Reform of Presumption of Resulting Trust and Advancement

Jacob Osamagiagiemwen Garuba, Mobolaji P. Ezekiel


The presumption of resulting trust and advancement, as equitable principles,
were developed in the English legal system to do justice on matters of proprietary
rights between persons who are in one relationship or the other such as spouses,
parents and their children amongst others. This article seeks to analyse the
application of the presumptions of resulting trust and advancement and case
law on the point. It questions the disparity of the application of the principles
of presumption of resulting trust and advancement in spouses’ relationships and
that of parents and children. It, also, examines the relevance and the continued
application of the presumption in the light of socio-cultural changes in the 21st
century. This article further examines the applicability of the presumption in
the relationship between couples of same-sex marriages. Finally, this article
concludes by arguing that in the light of the socio-cultural changes, the court
should be mindful of how it applies the principles with particular respect to the
seemingly inequity in determining the proprietary rights in transactions between
spouses and parents with children. The article canvasses that the presumption
of resulting trust and advancement, which operates to favour women, need to be
reviewed and possibly expunged as the purpose it was made to serve has long
been corrected as a result of female empowerment.

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