We have recently reviewed our requirements under the Land Registration Rules 2003. Rule 213 states a document dealing with part of the land in a registered title must, unless the part is clearly identified on the title plan, have attached to it ‘a plan identifying clearly the land dealt with’.
If the document is a deed (for example, a transfer or a deed of grant of easements) the plan must be signed by the disponor (for example, the seller or the grantor).
If the document is an application form (for example, AN1), the plan must be signed by the applicant.
In both instances we accept plans signed by their conveyancer.
Rule 213 is clear about when plans dealing with part of a title must be signed and who must sign them however, these requirements have not always been consistently applied in the past.
Why are we doing this?
To be more consistent with our customers in raising requisitions, from today (15 July 2019) our guidance will clearly state that, for registered estates, a plan to a disposition or application form must be signed. In the short term this may mean sending more requisition points, but if we do not do this and accept an unsigned plan, we could register a title or an easement with an extent that the parties, or successors, later disagree on, or argue should not have been registered at all.
You can view the updated Practice Guide 40, supplement 2: Guidance for preparing plans for HM Land Registry applications, and email us if you have any queries.
When the 2003 Rules are next amended, we will consider whether to pursue a change to rule 213 to give the registrar greater discretion to accept unsigned plans.