Woman wins legal battle with former partner over house

Couple shared property in Drimnagh for five years until relationship broke down

A general view of Mourne Road in Drimnagh, Dublin. Photograph: Google Street View

A general view of Mourne Road in Drimnagh, Dublin. Photograph: Google Street View


Dublin businesswoman Hazel Cullen has been granted judgment against her former partner with regard to a house they shared for eight years in Drimnagh, Dublin.

Barrister Padraic Hogan told the Circuit Civil Court that Ms Cullen, now of Power’s Court, Lower Mount Street, Dublin 2, and Ronan Kane shared the house at Mourne Road, Drimnagh, from July 2000 until their relationship broke down in January 2009.

Mr Hogan told Judge Jacqueline Linnane that when the couple bought the house they had formally agreed that it would be sold in the event of their relationship ending. Mr Kane had failed to vacate the house in order to facilitate a sale.

The court granted Ms Cullen judgment in default of appearance against Mr Kane, who was said also to have an address at his mother’s home at The Rise, Belgard Heights, Tallaght. Judge Linnane said detailed orders could be made later.

Ms Cullen claimed they had bought the house for €120,000 in 2000 with the aid of two €54,000 mortgages, one taken out by herself and Mr Kane and the second taken out in the name of her parents.

She and Mr Kane had discharged all repayments on both mortgages for a year when the loans were consolidated in both their names.

In 2005 they had re-mortgaged the property to raise a loan of €210,000 to purchase a share in a property in South West France.

In August 2007, Ms Cullen had borrowed €23,000 from Sandymount Credit Union to finance a three-room cabin at the bottom of their garden in Mourne Road to house an outdoor pursuits business for Mr Kane.

When the relationship failed in 2009 she had moved out of the family home and Mr Kane had continued to reside there but had since failed to discharge mortgage repayments.

Mr Cullen told the court she had discharged the €23,000 Sandymount Credit Union loan as well as a second loan for €5,500 which Mr Kane had taken out at Drimnagh Credit Union.

She said there was €188,000 outstanding on the joint mortgage and she feared her credit rating would be adversely effected or that judgment might be obtained against her by the mortgage bank.

In April last year, Mr Kane had agreed to vacate the house so it could be sold but, despite numerous requests, had failed to engage in any efforts to regularise their affairs.

Ms Cullen is seeking orders directing the sale of the property and reimbursement of her contributions and share in it.

Following Monday’s judgment, the court will later consider what orders should be made.