Other Registration Questions
Q1: Can stamp duty be paid in your department?
A: No. Matters relating to stamp duty are handled by the Stamp Office of the Inland Revenue Department. For enquiries, please call 2594 3201.
Q2: What are the special rules governing registration of court documents?
A: If a bankruptcy petition, charging order, writ of summons or other court document instituting a claim is registered against a property, its priority of registration will be deferred for one day in comparison with a usual case of non-court document. Its registration will take effect on the day following the actual date of its due presentation for registration. Furthermore, the validity of registration of a court document lasts for 5 years only. One needs to renew the registration of a court document every 5 years before the expiry of its current registration period.
Q3: In what ways can the registration of lis pendens be vacated?
A: A registered lis pendens in the land register must be vacated by an order of the court. Sections 19 to 21 of the Land Registration Ordinance (Cap. 128) stipulate how to apply to the court for an order vacating a lis pendens. The Land Registrar will act on the order when it is delivered for registration.
Q4: If property owners have changed their residential / correspondence addresses, do they need to notify the Land Registry and will the Land Registry update their addresses in the land record?
A: No. The property owners need not notify us of any change of their residential/correspondence address since owners’ addresses are only contained in the registered documents, the contents of which cannot be altered by the Land Registry.
Q5: Will an instrument have the force of law and be recognized by registration?
A: Any instrument that affects land is registrable subject to compliance with the requirements of the Land Registration Ordinance (Cap. 128). However, the present deeds registration system does not guarantee the validity and force in law of an instrument just because it is registered. In case of doubt, you may seek advice from private legal practitioners.
Q6: If some of the particulars contained in the carbon copy Provisional Agreement for Sale and Purchase are blurred, will it be accepted for registration?
A: It is stipulated that the instrument should be of such quality as to enable the contents thereof to be satisfactorily recorded by imaging method. In any event, the major particulars (e.g. names of parties, property description, etc.) which are required to be entered into the memorial must be clearly stated in instrument.
Q7: What measure has the Land Registry taken to ensure the accuracy of the data on the Land Register?
A: The registration process has various internal control measures including internal checking mechanism on the computerised registration system and different tiers of manual checking. Besides, the e-memorial form provided for free is embedded with functions such as auto-filling of address/undivided shares/lot no. and selection lists of natures of instruments, consideration descriptions and capacities and spell check, etc. The data entered in this form will be converted to a 2-dimensional barcode that can be read into our computer system for scrutiny and registration. This e-memorial form improves the efficiency and accuracy of updating the Land Register.
Q8: What is the consequence if an instrument is not registered in the Land Registry?
A: The Land Registry only accepts instruments which affect land for registration. Registration of an instrument affecting land gives it priority over unregistered instruments and other instruments registered after it, though does not give the instrument any validity it does not have. Instruments which affect land but not registered will lose priority and be void as against subsequent bona fide purchaser or mortgagee for valuable consideration.
Q9: How to ensure the scanning quality of oversized plans?
A: All images of oversized plans scanned by the contractor will be re-checked by the Land Registry's quality control staff.
Q10: Why are withheld deeds also scanned?
A: In order to provide search service of withheld deeds, which was available since 12 December 2002 according to Regulation 21(1)(aa) of the Land Registration Regulations (Cap. 128A), we have to scan the withheld deeds and store the images in our computer system.
Q11: After a withheld deed is clarified and re-submitted for registration, what is the registration date of the document?
A: If the re-delivered instrument is subsequently accepted for registration, the date of registration will be the date on which the instrument was first lodged for registration.
Q12: Under what circumstances will the Land Registry withhold instruments from registration?
A: If the instrument lodged for registration does not comply with the requirements under Land Registration Ordinance and Land Registration Regulations, it will be withheld from registration and returned to the lodging party for clarification.
Q13: How can I avoid an instrument from being withheld from registration?
A: To avoid an instrument from being withheld from registration, please refer to "Common Reasons for Withholding Instruments from Registration" under Memorial Form Easy Guide.
Q14: Is there any means to know the updated status of the instrument shown in "Deeds Pending Registration" section of land register before conducting a search of that instrument?
A: You may call our customer service hotline 3105 0000 and press 4-4-1 after selecting language and input the memorial number to check the registration status of the instrument. You may also enquire the registration status of the instrument via our IRIS Online Services at http://www.iris.gov.hk.
Q15: Why a Provisional Agreement for Sale and Purchase annexed with a black and white plan photocopied from first Assignment is sometimes withheld from registration requesting for clarification on the colouring of the area marked with a colour code on the plan?
A: If the property is described in the instrument to be identified by the coloured area in the plan, the area marked with a colour code should be coloured as appropriate. However, if the plan has not been mentioned in the instrument, the Land Registry will regard it as additional information and accept it for registration.
Q16: Can I arrange a solicitor clerk to go to your office to initial against the correction of memorials of registered instruments?
A: No. Correction of error in a registered memorial has to be corrected and initialed by the attesting solicitor of the relevant instrument being witnessed and verified by the Land Registrar in accordance with Regulation 20(1) of the Land Registration Regulations (Cap. 128A).
Q17: There is difficulty for the attesting solicitors to attend the correction of memorials during your service hours on weekdays. Could the appointment be arranged on Saturday mornings?
A: Saturday is not a working day for the Land Registry since the implementation of five-day week in 2007. If there is genuine difficulty to attend the correction of memorial during our service hours, you may contact us for special arrangement for correcting the memorials outside our normal service hours during weekdays.
Q18: Regulation 9(1)(c) of the Land Registration Regulations (Cap. 128A) stipulates that an instrument delivered for registration should be bound in a manner to enable the instrument to be satisfactorily recorded by the imaging method. What are the requirements for binding the instrument?
A: To enable the instrument to be satisfactorily recorded by the imaging method, please simply bind the instrument with staples. Corner wrapping paper, eyelets, plastic coils, red wax sealing should not be used for instrument delivered for registration.