The Land Title Registration Act, 2011 (the “Act”), as recently amended, is likely to come into full effect in August. Bermuda landowners may have a number of questions concerning this legislation, which we aim to answer in this article.
What is Land Title Registration?
It is the creation by Government of a public register of land ownership in Bermuda. It is intended to provide certainty of ownership backed by a Government guarantee, simplify proof of ownership, and move Bermuda from its current system of unregistered land to a system of registered land, over time.
When will it come into effect?
While the Act was passed by Parliament in 2011, it did not come into force until 2 July 2018 and then only in part (see next question). It is likely to be made fully effective on or about 13 August 2018. The delay in bringing the Act into force was due to a number of issues associated with its implementation, which have been addressed through a series of amendments. The most recent of these is the Land Title Registration Amendment Act, 2018 (the “Amendment Act”), which is currently being signed into law.
Can any applications be made at the current date?
The Land Title Registry Office (the “LTRO”) is not yet accepting any applications for land registration. Currently, only Part 8 of the Act, which relates to cautions against first registration, is in operation. This facility enables a person who believes that he has an interest in a property that is destined for registration (and who is unlikely to be a title holder already) to register his interest at LTRO with a view to having such interest taken into account or noted as part of the registration process. An application for a caution needs to include particulars in respect of the interest being claimed, as well as an application fee in the sum of $104.
How will I know when land title registration becomes fully operational?
When the Land Title Registrar is satisfied that there are adequate arrangements in place at the LTRO to service the resulting applications, an official notice will be issued to the public which will bring the Act into full operation.
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Bermuda Land Title Registration: Your Questions Answered