Are Land Registry and Cadastre different institutions?
The land registers and the cadastre in the Republic of Croatia are two separate institutions. The land registers are under the jurisdiction of municipal courts (first-instance courts) while the cadastre is under the jurisdiction of the State administration.
In order to describe the role of land registers and the cadastre as simple as possible, one should underline that the land registers are a public register of merit for legal transactions, that they reflect the legal status of a real property while the cadastre is in charge of determining the shape, area, extend of development of the cadastral parcel and its illustration on the map.
In the land registers, the data on sheet A – property sheet should be identical to the data in the cadastre because the basis of this part of the land registers is the data from the cadastre. Each change of the data in sheet A of the land registers should be based on the application report from the cadastre, precisely for the purpose of the data in sheet A of the land register matching the data in the cadastre.
The cadastre should submit each change of the data on the cadastral parcel to the land registration court and the LR court should submit each change of the owner of a real property to the cadastre.
Public legal restrictions are also recorded in the land registers. The restrictions might involve e.g. the fact that a certain real property is a public good (excluded from the legal transactions – maritime domain) or that it is a public good in the common or public use, or that the expropriation or similar procedure has been initiated with regard to a real property.
The urban planning restrictions are not recorded in the land registers.
All data from the land registers are available online, over the internet, but in order to obtain a data, an interested party must know the cadastral municipality where a real property is located, along with the number of the cadastral parcel or the number of a LR file. For now, graphical data cannot be obtained over the internet but this is planned in the future system.
The LR clerk double-checks the formal and content accuracy of the document serving as the basis for registration but does not need to control whether it matches the graphical data.
Registration rights to be acquired either on the basis of a private document or of a public deed can be registered in the land registers if pertaining to a real property.
The land registers are public registers and the Republic of Croatia is objectively accountable for the damage caused by errors in keeping the land registers by electronic data processing. The State is not accountable for the situation in which some land owners have not put their papers in order for years i.e. they have not performed registrations because the registration in the land registers in Croatia is a voluntary act.
The owners of the adjoining real property participate n the procedures before the cadastre in case of resurveys i.e. when the borders of a cadastral parcel are defined.
The responsibility of the cadastre is to accurately define a cadastral parcel, keep cadastral maps and monitor all the changes happening in space.
The issue of environmental protection and urban planning restrictions is the jurisdiction of the State administration, i.e. currently two ministries.
For now, the data in the land registers and in the cadastre are separate so it is necessary to seek the data from both institutions.
The employees in the cadastre are geodetic engineers or surveyors while the employees of LR courts are judges and LR employees.
Due to historic reasons, the data in the land registers and cadastre often differ since there was no coordination between the cadastre and land registers and they did not inform each other. The reasons for such a situation lie also in the fact that the land registers were not updated during the Socialist times while the cadastre had solely a taxation and fiscal role.
However, various activities are undertaken at the moment in order to harmonize the two records and to create in the future a joint information system in order to prevent the generation of further discrepancies.
Now, a person wishing to buy something must gain insight into both records, compare the data and only then decide whether to buy something or not.