Preventive control of legality

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1. Do Land Registrars or Land Registries carry out a legal scrutiny or assessment of the documents or applications submitted or (conversely) are registered without a previous examination?

The documents are examined to ensure they meet land registration rules and requirements, that the party applying for registration is in fact entitled to deal with the registered interest and that all legislative requirements for registration have been complied with (including payment of appropriate stamp duty).

2. What does the object of the LR assessment consist of? Are the documents presented and the content of the registration books or land books (or any other books or lists of your LR organisation) the only elements that land registrars bear in mind for carrying out their assessment and then to accept registration or not? What is the situation in your LR system?

Registrars examine strictly documents once presented and the landbooks content. Having studied both, they decide if accept the registration or if they refuse it.

For property that is already registered, the documentation is examined to ensure the application complies strictly to land registry rules and forms for each type of registration. The map is also inspected to see if it complies with our standards and the property being dealt with is clearly and suitably indentified.

On a first registration, in a case where the solicitor does not certify the title, the deeds and documents are fully examined and the legal title fully investigated by an Examiner of Titles prior to first registration of the title. The Examiner of Titles may request other evidence or request additional requirements to be met such as publication of a newspaper notice or require indemnification prior to giving a State guarantee.

3. Otherwise, the correct answer with respect to your LR assessment would be:

LR does not accept documents that don’t comply with the legal requirements for registration under the Registration of Title Acts 1964, Registration of Deeds and Titles Act, 2006 or all legal requirements for first registration under the same Acts.

4.  A specific case: let’s consider an application for registration based on a document or deed with lack of legal prerequisites.  What would your LR response be?

In certain cases the rejection policy applies where the deeds and documents are clearly not in order. Once an application (dealing) is rejected, it loses any priority and registration will only be made on re-lodgement of an application that is in order from the date of re-lodgement. If the defect is minor, the application for registration is not rejected, a query issues to the lodging party and once the application is in order, registration is made from the date of lodgement, unless there are other matters that might affect the date of registration.

5. In case of rejection or abeyance of a document, does your system provide legal possibilities to request a review to the parties or stakeholders? Do they have legal possibilities of appealing the Land registers’ decision? Please, describe the procedures if applicable.

Once an application is rejected, there is no basis for an appeal as the application for registration was never made in the appropriate form and therefore not formally refused. The application can be re-lodged at any time once the defect or omission has been rectified.

There is provision in legislation for refusal of application. Refusals are rare as most defects are rectified by reply to query and tend to be limited to first registration applications and applications based on adverse possession, where either the title has not been fully shown or was validly objected to by a third party. In such cases, where a formal order refusing registration has issued, a party can appeal to court under Section 19 of the Registration of Title Act, 1964.

6. Must registrars or LR offices do their assessment within deadlines? If applicable, is it mandatory for registrars in charge or is it rather a guideline?

There are no mandatory deadlines but turnaround times and outputs are always monitored by senior management.