Easements claimed by prescription (PG52)

Information about acquiring easements by prescription (practice guide 52).



This guide gives advice on:

  • acquiring easements by prescription
  • how easements operate when no register entries are made
  • how to apply for a register entry in respect of easements and the register entries that we make in respect of the easements
  • the effect of an objection to an application

It is aimed at conveyancers and you should interpret references to ‘you’ accordingly. HM Land Registry staff will also refer to it.

We only provide factual information and impartial advice about our procedures. Read more about the advice we give.


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Published 13 October 2003
Last updated 16 March 2020 + show all updates
  1. Section 1.2 has been amended to clarify that a tenant is unable to acquire easements over other land owned by their landlord.

  2. Section 3.4 has been added to make it clearer that the burden of a prescriptive easement can be protected by a caution against first registration.

  3. Section 1.2 has been amended to make it clear when a prescriptive easement might still arise where the burdened land is occupied by a tenant.

  4. Section 4 has been updated to reflect our current practice relating to the use of copy documents for registration. Section 4.1 has been updated following the amendment of rule 90 of the Land Registration Rules 2003 by the Land Registration (Amendment) Rules 2018 coming into force on 6 April 2018.

  5. Section 3.2 has been amended as a result of a review of our practice.

  6. Link to the advice we offer added.

  7. First published.