McCausland and Others v Young and Others

JurisdictionNorthern Ireland
Judgment Date01 January 1949
Date01 January 1949
CourtCourt of Appeal (Northern Ireland)
(C.A., N.I.),
McCausland and Others
and
Young and Others

Forfeiture clause - "Become a Roman Catholic or profess that he or she is of the Roman Catholic religion" - Uncertainty - Infant - Parental duty - Public policy.

A condition subsequent in a re-settlement provided that if any person thereby made tenant for life or tenant in tail by purchase should "become a Roman Catholic or profess that he or she is of the Roman Catholic religion"then both such person and his issue should forfeit all interest thereunder, It was contended (i) that the condition was void for uncertainty in that the term "Roman Catholic" was ambiguous, that it was not possible to ascertain with certainty how or at what time a parson "became"a Roman Catholic, and that it was not certain what acts or conduct would amount to "profess,"or whether "religion" meant religious organisation or a system of belief; (ii) that the condition was void as contrary to public policy as tending to fetter the father of any infant entitled under the settlement in discharging his parental duty with regard to the religious instruction of such child. Held, by the Court of Appeal (Andrews L.C.J. and Babington L.J.), affirming the decision of Black J. on this point, that the term "Roman Catholic" was to be interpreted as reasonably understood by ordinary persons and its meaning in this sense was not uncertain; and that whether a person had become a Roman Catholic and whether a person had professed that he or she was of the Roman Catholic religion were questions of fact capable of being understood with certainty and of being ascertained with precision. Held, further, by Andrews L.C.J., that where the choice of religion may involve a forfeiture the court will not hold a beneficiary to a binding choice until he is of age when he can exercise a free and real choice of his own, and accordingly the condition did not interfere with the father's exercise of his right to determine in what religion his children shall be educated.

(C.A., N.I.)
McCausland and Others
and
Young and Others

Non-disclosure of forfeiture clause - Ratification - Delay - Acquiescence.

A father and son who were entitled under two settlements as tenant for life in possession and tenant in tail in remainder respectively concurred in a re-settlement on the coming of age of the son, the father bringing into the re-settlement certain lands of which he was seised in fee simple. By the re-settlement the properties comprised therein...

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5 cases
  • Blathwayt v Baron Cawley
    • United Kingdom
    • House of Lords
    • 22 Octubre 1975
    ... ... Blathwayt and Lord Cawley and Others. [1975] UKHL J1022-2 ... Lord Wilberforce ... 629 ; In re McKenna decd. [1947] I.R. 277 ; McCausland v. Young [1948] N.I.R. 72 and [1949] N.I.R. 49 ... A decision the other ... ...
  • Carroll v Carroll
    • Ireland
    • Supreme Court
    • 1 Enero 2000
    ...1000 ALLCARD V SKINNER 1887 36 CH 145 KEANE EQUITY & LAW OF TRUSTS IN IRELAND H V H UNREP KEANE 20.12.1979 1981/4/591 MCCAUSLAND V YOUNG 1949 NI 49 O'FLANAGAN V RAY-GER LTD UNREP COSTELLO 28.4.1983 1983/11/3316 JOHNSON V BUTRESS 1936 56 CLR 113 HANBURY MODERN EQUITY 9ED 652 COLREAVY V COLR......
  • Re Blake, Deceased
    • Ireland
    • High Court
    • 8 Marzo 1955
    ...2 All E. R. 878. (16) 3 Atk. 330. (17) 39 Ch. D. 116. (18) 26 T. L. R. 398. (19) [1946] 2 All E. R. 503. (20) [1932] 1 Ch. 99. (21) [1949] N. I. 49. (22) [1908] 2 Ch. 365. (23) [1912] 2 Ch. 622. (24) [1951] 1 Ch. 964. (25) [1953] 1 Ch. 810. (26) [1934] A. C. 348. (27) [1920] 1 Ch. 122. (28)......
  • Hayes (Alistair Nigel) v McGuigan (Marlyn) and others [No 2]
    • United Kingdom
    • Chancery Division (Northern Ireland)
    • 7 Diciembre 2011
    ...to allow him to come into the estate. The decision of the court was upheld by the Court of Appeal in the case of the same name at 1949 NI 49 (although Andrews LCJ and Babington LJ did not fully agree on all the points argued before them). [33] On foot of that and the other authorities I con......
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