Coombes v Smith [1986].

Defendant bought house for mistress and their
illegitimate child.
Plaintiff mistress made improvements and decorated.
Defendant refused to put house in joint names,
maintaining he would always provide for her and she would always have a roof
over her head.
After 10 years relationship ended.
Plaintiff offered defendant £10k to move out of house
– she refused.
Defendant undertook to allow her and child to occupy house
until child was 17 – she refused.
Chancery Division held plaintiff had not established
elements necessary to give rise to an equity in her favour.
Firstly, no mistaken belief that she would have right
to remain in house indefinitely against defendant’s wishes (belief defendant would
provide roof over head insufficient).
Secondly, plaintiff had not acted to her detriment in her course of actions (becoming
pregnant, leaving her husband, looking after the house and child, improving the
house and not looking for a job).