The Supreme Court has now ruled in the 2010 case of Kernott v Jones, in which the respective shares of a property bought by a couple who cohabited and then split had to be decided. The published decision can be found at: http://www.bailii.org/uk/cases/UKSC/2011/53.html.
The Court of Appeal had previously awarded Mr Kernott 50% of the value of the house in which he had lived with Ms Jones. The Supreme Court has now overturned that decision and instead awarded him only 10%. The reduced award means that the amount that he will recover from the sale of the property will be dwarfed by his legal costs.
The case highlights the importance of signing a Declaration of Trust when cohabiting or buying a property with another person, setting out how the proceeds of sale are to be split if the property is later sold.