Compulsory First Registration questions and answers

Please see below for a list of questions and answers on Land & Property Services (LPS) Compulsory First Registration (CFR).

Mapping requirements for CFR

What is an ACE map?

An ACE map is a map centred on the address of a property. ACE (Address Centred Extract) maps are produced by LPS and are produced from its digital map base.

Why do I need to lodge an ACE map, when there is a recent map attached to the Conveyance/Lease/Fee Farm Grant?

While the map attached to the Conveyance/Lease/Fee Farm Grant may be recent, experience has shown that it is highly unlikely that the boundaries of the premises shown thereon will align correctly with their ground position as shown on the Ordnance Survey digital map used in Land Registry. Failure to accurately align property boundaries with their ground position as shown on the digital map will result in the creation of slivers between or encroachments on adjoining property.

If LPS cannot provide me with an ACE map within three months of the date of the purchase deed, what should I do?

Lodgement of your application should be delayed until the ACE map becomes available. If this makes it impossible for you to meet the three-month deadline for lodgment you should cite this as the reason for the delay when applying to the Registrar for an extension of time.

If the property is an apartment or a maisonette or a former NIHE property with a first floor extending over the adjoining property, are there any special mapping requirements?

In such circumstances the application must be accompanied by:

  • the OSNI Address Centred Extract (ACE) map to locate the premises on the registry map and elevations and floor plans showing the extent to which the bedroom overhangs the adjoining premises or
  • detailed floor plans showing the layout of the apartment or maisonette within the building

The description of land in Panel 1 of Form 1 must refer to the ACE map and the plans and confirm the floor levels on which the premises are situate.

Who should outline the property on the ACE map?

The property should be outlined on the ACE map by someone who is able to relate the boundaries of the premises as they are shown on the Conveyance/Lease/Fee Farm Grant with the ordnance survey detail on the ACE map. Any outlining must be applied neatly and not with a thick marker pen. If you are unable to outline the property it would be advisable to obtain the services of a surveyor or architect.

Root of Title queries

What should I do if I cannot lodge the original deed which comprises the root of title?

You should lodge a certified copy of the deed, together with a brief explanation as to why the original cannot be produced.

If the root of title affects more land than the land the subject of the CFR application, what should I lodge?

You should lodge the original and a certified copy of the deed, together with a request to have the original deed returned to you on completion of registration as it affects other land.

If there is no good root of title or no title deeds at all, what can I do?

If there is no documentary evidence of title, you must apply for a possessory title in Form 3. The fee payable is £260 and the title will be investigated by the Land Registry.

If the only available document of title is a conveyance made less than 15 years ago, you should apply for a qualified title in Form 1.

If the property the subject of a CFR application formerly comprised 2 or more adjoining plots, each with a separate root of title, can I make a composite application?

Yes. A composite application in Form 1 with a registration fee of £100 by e-registration and £130 by paper will be accepted and, provided the land is entirely leasehold or entirely freehold, one new folio will be opened.

Details of each root of title should be entered in Panel 5 of Form 1 and each plot should be defined within the overall property boundaries on the ACE map.

If the property has both freehold and leasehold land, can I make a composite application? How many folios will be opened?

A composite application in Form 1 with a fee of £100 by e-registration and £130 by paper will be accepted. However, two separate folios will be opened and the leasehold and freehold property must be clearly distinguished on the ACE map.

If the title to part of the property is already registered, can the part subject to the CFR application be included in the existing folio?

No. If you require one folio for the entire property, you should lodge a request to close the original folio and transfer the property contained in it to the new folio to be opened for the CFR application. A further fee of £70 by e-registration and £90 by paper is payable for the amalgamation.

In what circumstances is it possible to have an absolute leasehold title?

Where a good root of title to the fee simple estate, such as a conveyance for value made at least 15 years ago, is produced. Panel 5 of Form 1 should be amended as necessary.

How much investigation of title is carried out by Land Registry?

Where an application is made by Solicitor's certificate in Form 1, the solicitor is liable for statements made as to title and the Land Registry carries out no investigation of the title.

Why does Land Registry retain the original title documents?

With the exception of original deeds which also affect other land or are to be issued as endorsed certificates of charge, all documents on which entries on the register are founded, must be retained in the Registry in accordance with the Land Registration Rules. The entries on the register are proof of the title shown.

I have only one mortgage deed but I require a Certificate of Charge.

If you lodge the original deed together with a certified copy, the certified copy will be endorsed as a certificate of charge and issued. The original deed will be retained in the Registry (Rule 122). The certified copy deed must be prepared by you.

Schedule of Burdens

If the assurance to the purchaser is a conveyance from the NIHE, should I include the discount charge in the Schedule of Burdens?

If the discount charge still affects the land, it must always be entered in the Schedule of Burdens.

If the land is indemnified against payment of a fee farm rent, does the rent have to be included in the Schedule of Burdens?

Yes because the land is still subject to the rent. In these circumstances an absolute title should not be sought.

Where the property is held under a Lease, I enter the yearly rent and lessee’s covenants in the Schedule of Burdens in Form 1. However, when I examine the new land certificate, there is no mention of the lessees’ covenants. Why is this?

In the case of a registered leasehold estate, all express and implied covenants, conditions and liabilities are Schedule 5 burdens ie they affect the land without registration.

Why does Form1 have to be signed by an individual solicitor? Is the name of the firm not acceptable?

An application in Form 1 is based on a solicitor's certificate and the solicitor is liable for statements made as to title. The name of the firm is not acceptable.

How can I secure the priority of deeds which affect land the subject of a CFR application when registration has still to be completed? Should I lodge a priority search?

The land remains an unregistered title until registration of the CFR application has been completed. Deeds affecting the land should be registered in the Registry of Deeds before lodgment in Land Registry and priority will be governed by Registry of Deeds principles.

A priority search is only appropriate to registered land and should not be requested in this instance because the title to the land is still unregistered.

Rectification after completion

If, after registration, I discover that the full extent of the land was not shown on the ACE map, how can I rectify my error?

If registration has been completed recently, you should re-certify the title by lodging a further application in Form 1, an ACE map showing the full extent of the land and a fee of £90. This is to ensure that the title to the full extent of the land has been certified. If the deeds in the original application confirm the full extent of the property, the registry map will be amended accordingly. If registration has not been completed recently, a deed of rectification together with a fee of £90 will be required.

If, after registration, I discover that I have requested the wrong title, how can I rectify my error?

You should lodge an application in Form 27 to reclassify the title referring to the appropriate documents. The fee payable is £90.

NI Co-ownership CFR

If my client is purchasing the property with the assistance of NICHA, how do I complete Form 1?

You should enter NICHA as the applicant in panel 2 of Form 1. Details of the Lease from NICHA to the participants and their mortgage must be entered in the Schedule of Burdens. Documents to be lodged include:

  • Form 100A
  • Form 1
  • Root of title
  • assurance to NICHA 
  • lease to participants
  • participants' mortgage

Although there is no fee payable for registration of the lease to the participant, registration of the participant's mortgage attracts a fee of £90 by e-registration and £110 by paper.

If a participant in the NICHA scheme sells an unregistered property to a purchaser who purchases the property through the NICHA scheme, does the assignment of the equity sharing lease to the new participant trigger compulsory first registration and, if so, what is the position regarding NICHA’s unregistered title?

The assignment of the equity sharing lease triggers compulsory first registration. However, NICHA’s title is unaffected and registration of its title is not compulsory.

The equity sharing lease in a NICHA scheme is held jointly and one of the participants wishes to assign his or her interest to the other for a consideration of £1. Does the assignment of the interest trigger compulsory first registration and, if so, what is the position regarding NICHA’s unregistered title?

Assignment of the interest in the equity sharing lease triggers compulsory first registration. However, registration of NICHA’s title is not compulsory.

If a participant in the NICHA scheme or his purchaser wishes to buy out NICHA, does the transaction trigger a CFR application?

This triggers compulsory first registration and the unregistered 99 year sub-lease is extinguished by merger in the deed. The consequent application for first registration relates to the title previously held by NICHA and acquired by the applicant in the buy-out.

If the property includes an undivided share in a roadway or other common area, how should I ensure the share is included in the application?

The shared area should be clearly defined on the ACE map and the precise fractional share, in which it is held, entered in Panel 1 of Form 1.

The original or a certified copy of the deed which comprises the root of title of the shared area must also be lodged and details of that deed entered in Panel 5 of Form 1.

Part of a property is registered and part unregistered. Can the land, the subject of the CFR application, be added to the existing folio?

No. Additional land cannot be registered in a folio after it has been opened.

The Registry will open a separate new folio for the previously unregistered land.

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