Disclosable Overriding Interests

What is an Overriding Interest?

An overriding interest is any interest in land which "overrides" registration, i.e. it is still valid and enforceable against land even though it is not registered against the land's title. Examples of overriding interests include certain rights of occupation, easements, leases for a term of less than 7 years etc.

What Overriding Interests are Disclosable and Why?

The full list of disclosable overriding intersts can be found in Schedule 1  & Schedule 3 of the Land Registration Act 2002. The purpose is to try to reduce the number of overriding interests and replace them with entries in the registers, thus making titles more transparent. The Land Registration Act 2002 imposes an obligation on a purchaser to disclose relevant overriding interests to the land registry as part of the application for registration.

Establishing Whether Disclosable Overriding Interests Exist When Acting for a Purchaser

As mentioned above the purchaser of a property is under a duty to disclose any relevant overriding interest which he is or could reasonably be exptected to be aware of. For this reason the purchaser's solicitor should enquire of the seller as to whether the seller is aware of any such interest. Naturally if the seller is simply asked whether the property is subject to overriding interests it is unlikely he will understand the question therefore a questionnaire, such as the one found by following this link, should be used.

Disclosing Overriding Interests

If relevant overriding interests do exist then they must be disclosed to the land registry using form DI. This form should be submitted along with the AP1 (see Registration). Evidence of how the interest has arisen must be lodged. A certified copy of the deed or document which created the overriding interest is usually sufficient. The effect of disclosure is that the overriding interest will, if valid, be noted on the title to the property.