What you need to know about first registrations

Land Registry, from 7th September 2015, has changed the documents required to be delivered when a customer applies for first registration.

Land or property must be registered for the first time if it is unregistered when a person takes ownership or mortgages it. Land Registry has sought to bring the requirements for first applications nearer to the requirements of other kinds of application.

Customers will no longer be required to lodge original documents for first registration. This will apply when the registration is based on a statutory declaration or statement of truth, if the title documents are not available, or the title is claimed by reason of adverse possession of unregistered land.

If an application of this kind comprises of only an FR1 form and statutory declaration or statement of truth, with or without a plan, the applicant may submit certified copies of the documents including the statutory declaration or statement of truth, with any exhibits, instead of the original documents.

This, however, only relates to those applying by post, document exchange, and personal delivery.

If the original or certified copies of the statutory declaration or statement of truth and other documents are sent, Land Registry have now announced that both originals and copies will be scanned and destroyed at the Land Registry post room. It is, therefore, important to update clients and staff that if original documents are sent, they will no longer be returned to them after the application.

This change, however, does not apply if some, but not all, of the deeds and documents relating to title are in control of the applicant. In this case, the original deeds and documents are required to for the application as well as a statutory declaration or statement of truth relating to the missing deeds and documents.

The new direction from Land Registry has been brought in with an aim to reduce the volume of original documents that they handle and make it easier for documents to be sent and processed for first time registration applications.

Have you dealt with any first registrations since this change was implimented? Please provide any feedback you have on this subject in the comment section below.

Today's Conveyancer