Land Registry launches consultation

Nia Williams

March 22, 2010

The new proposals would make it possible, for the first time, to carry out the main conveyancing steps in the sale and purchase of a house electronically instead of using paper documents. The consultation period runs for 14 weeks from 22 March until 25 June 2010.

The aim of Land Registry’s e-conveyancing programme is to make conveyancing easier for everyone, with an electronic system that makes buying and selling property less stressful for the public, conveyancing professionals and the other parties involved.

The proposed new land registration rules would prescribe an electronic transfer as an additional kind of electronic disposition of registered land in England and Wales. Existing rules made in 2008 provide for the creation of standalone electronic legal charges (usually remortgages). The new rules would also revoke the 2008 rules and allow for both standalone electronic legal charges and electronic charges accompanying a transfer. There is already provision for electronic discharges.

Subject to the outcome of the proposals and the advice and assistance of the Rule Committee, it is anticipated that the new rules would come into force during 2011.

The consultation is aimed primarily at conveyancers, lenders, financial institutions, regulatory and representative bodies (such as The Law Society, the Solicitors Regulation Authority, the Council of Mortgage Lenders and the Council for Licensed Conveyancers) and other property professionals such as estate agents.

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