Deeds Registration(I) Registration of Deeds
(II) Deed Registration Process
(III) Registration Fees
(I) Registration of Deeds
What are the role and functions of the Land Registry in registration of deeds?
- Under the Land Registration Ordinance (Cap. 128) (“LRO”), the Land Registry is the public office for the registration of deeds, conveyances, other instruments in writing and judgments by which any parcels of land may be affected.
- The Land Registry will scrutinize an instrument to consider whether it is registrable only after it has been lodged for registration. The Land Registry will not comment on an instrument’s registrability before the instrument is lodged for registration.
- The Land Registry will not provide legal advice on property transaction issues.
- The Land Registry has no power to remove or cancel the entry of any registered instrument from the land register. Unless an application in writing for withdrawal of the instrument from registration is made by the lodging party, the Land Registry also has no power to unilaterally remove or cancel the entry of any instrument from the land register which is pending registration or withheld from registration.
What is registration of deeds?
- The Land Registry maintains a land register for each property.
- Particulars of deeds or other documents affecting a property lodged for registration are entered onto the land register of that property.
- On completion of registration, the land registers and imaged copies of the registered documents are open for public search subject to payment of the prescribed fees.
In what way is the registration of document related to me as a member of the public?
- If you purchase a property or become a party to a property transaction, you would need to execute a deed or other document. That deed or document will normally be registered in the Land Registry.
- If you intend to deal with or enter into a transaction of a property, for example, as a purchaser or mortgagee, you can obtain information related to the property by searching the relevant land register. You can also check and verify all registered documents affecting that property with the advice or assistance of private legal practitioners if needed before making your decision on entering into a transaction of the property.
What are the benefits of registering a document in the Land Registry to me?
- Registration of a document under the present deeds registration system gives it priority over unregistered documents and other documents registered after it but does not confer on the document any validity it does not have.
- Through registration, your interest in the property is put on notice to any person who is interested in the property.
- Any persons subsequently dealing with the property will be bound by the registered documents.
- Unregistered documents will lose priority and be void as against any subsequent bona fide purchaser or mortgagee for valuable consideration.
Can the registration of an instrument guarantee the title of the property and confer validity on the instrument concerned?
- Under the present deeds registration system, registration under the LRO does not guarantee title to a property as the title is derived from title documents, not from registration of instruments in the Land Registry. Nor does registration of an instrument confer on the instrument any validity that it does not have.
- If you have doubt on the title to property or validity of an instrument, you should consider seeking advice from private legal practitioners.