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Land: Registration

Volume 497: debated on Monday 12 October 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice (1) with reference to the Land Registry Annual Report 2007-08, what criteria the Land Registry applies in respect of the level of fees it charges for adjudication hearings; and if he will make a statement; (290076)

(2) how much the Land Registry received in fees for adjudication hearings in each of the last four years; and if he will make a statement.

The Adjudicator to HM Land Registry is a judicial office within the Tribunal Service and is independent of the Land Registry, with specific powers to determine disputes referred under section 73(7) of the Land Registration Act 2002. The Land Registry must refer cases to the Adjudicator when there is a disputed application which cannot be resolved by agreement between the parties concerned. Applications may also be made directly to the Adjudicator for correcting or setting aside a document relating to registered land, and he hears appeals in relation to network access agreements.

The Land Registry does not charge a fee when a matter is referred to the Adjudicator and has not received any fees for adjudication hearings. The Land Registration Act 2002 gives the Lord Chancellor power to prescribe fees for proceedings before the Adjudicator; that power has not been exercised and the services are currently free of charge. The Adjudicator is able to make orders for costs in relation to proceedings before him, unless the parties concerned have agreed who should pay.

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice how many adjudication hearings the Land Registry has held in each of the last four years; and if he will make a statement. (290077)

All adjudication hearings are held by the Adjudicator to HM Land Registry, which is an independent office created by the Land Registration Act 2002. The Land Registry has therefore made reference to the Adjudicator to provide the data requested. The number of hearings in each of the last four financial years was as follows:

Number of adjudication hearings

2005-06

90

2006-07

189

2007-08

255

2008-09

260