Responsible Agency

1. Which agency/government body/authority is responsible for land registration?

National Land Survey of Finland (hereinafter NLS)

2. If the responsibility for property registration is dealt with by an agency/authority, to which government department is it responsible to?

To the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry

3. How is the organization managed?

On top level we have Director General who is in charge of the organization as a whole (Head of the organization). He has appointed a management team (9 person) to help him. CEO:s (Director General) term is 7 years. Changes arise very seldom but for the moment we happen to have a large reform of our organization going on and there will be some changes.

4. Describe the organisational framework:

NLS has 35 local offices around the country, but they all belong under the one centralized unit (central administration), NLS. NLS maintains a centralised database.

5. How is the agency/government body/authority funded?

NLS is mainly self-financing (70 %), but there are some activities which NLS is responsible to maintain without possibility to collect any charges.

For most activities (e.g. registering titles and mortgages) NLS is allowed to collect the fee that covers the costs. Our Ministry controls the price level. So any excess does not occur. That part of activities of which NLS is not allowed to collect fees is financed annually from government budget.

6. Are the staff of the agency/government, department/authority civil servants?

They are mostly civil servants

  • If so are staff permanent or a combination of permanent/temporary positions?

Civil servants are all permanent, except those who are substitutes (e.g. for those on maternity leave)

  • Who has the responsibility for hiring of staff to be assigned? Is it through a central Government recruitment agency or hired directly by the agency/authority according to demand for services?

The staff is hired directly by our organization

  • Are any of the land registration services contracted out? If yes, please state which services and type of service provider.


7. Who is responsible for cadastral/mapping information? Is it the same organisation or a separate agency/department?

It is mainly the same organisation (National Land Survey of Finland) but large cities are responsible for surveying and producing cadastral information in city centries (i.e. in detailed plan areas).

8. What are the principal functions of the registering department/agency/authority?

According to the Finnish Code of Real Estate (540/1995) registration means the registration of titles and special rights as well as mortgaging.

Entries on other rights to and encumbrances over real estate shall also be made to the register.

The title and mortgage register shall be kept for registration purposes. From 1.11.2013 on NLS is responsible to maintain the Electronic Property Transaction System (a system which I presented on ELRA General assembly on 23rd of May this year).

9. What are the key values/principles underpinning registration of title in your system?

An application of registration shall be entered into the register without delay (within the same day when it is brought to NLS). An entry in the register is deemed to be public knowledge as from the first weekday after the date of entry. The public knowledge of the register has also a meaning of public reliability.

It means that an entry in the register is protected by law (the Code of Real estate, paragraphs 4, 5 and 6 of Chapter 13) so that anyone who commits a judicial act with a registered owner of the title of real property is entitled to trust that his/her right will be abiding even though it would later turn out that the registered owner of the title is not the real owner.

The real owner is entitled to full compensation for the loss he/she has suffered from NLS.

10. What registration system of property do you have in your country (title/deed)?

Title system, even if we also save a copy of the deeds document in electronic form. In the new electronic property transaction system maintained by NLS both the deeds document which is written directly in to the system and land registration are linked together (as I presented in Lisbon  on 23rd May this year).

When the seller and the buyer agree the deeds document electronically in the system becomes the application for registration of the title pending immediately without further activities.

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