When should a request for a report be submitted?
A request for a report should be submitted at the earliest possible stage in the transaction. In submitting a plans report the solicitor should ensure that there is time to address any issues that the report may highlight before it is submitted for registration. If the request is submitted close to settlement then there may not be enough time to resolve any highlighted issues.
Q2. Is a plans report required for subjects already registered in the land register?
No - a plans report is not required for a transaction in respect of a wholly registered title.
The issue of competing titles in the land register is an important one, but it affects a very small number of titles which will ultimately be identified and resolved by completion of the land register. The position on competition will be clear from the existing 1979 Act title sheets with the existence of the competition disclosed in the Proprietorship Section of the affected title sheets. Where the competing title exists in the Register of Sasines this is disclosed by way of a note in the following form "C also has title to the subjects in this title/part tinted X on the Title Plan by virtue of a disposition recorded G.R.S. (xxx) xxx". Where the competing title exists in another land register title sheet the competing proprietor(s) will be shown in each affected title sheet so that each title sheet, taken alone, shows the position. Indemnity would also have been excluded based, largely, on the order of registration because, generally, the issue of competition will only become apparent on the second title being registered. The position will therefore be clear from a legal report and also from the title sheet when exhibited by the seller.
Q3. Do I need a plans report for subjects already registered in the land register if the existing title shows competition?
No - plans reports are designed to assist in identifying potential problems with title extent. Here the problem is already known and is evident form the face of the title sheet. A plans report thus adds no value. In the case of two registered titles which overlap before designated day where one title is transacted upon after designated day, this will not result in a rejection. The competition would continue to be reflected in the updated title although the note/exclusion of indemnity would become a note/exclusion of warranty.
Q4. When is there a need for a plans report?
A plans report is appropriate when the plot of land (to which the deed or voluntary registration relates) is being registered for the first time in the land register. A plans report will ensure you minimise the likelihood of rejection of an application by helping identifying conflicting registrations and deficiencies in deed plans prior to submission. While plans reports are primarily intended to support applications for first registration, in certain limited cases a report over registered subjects may be appropriate. For example where parties wish to ensure that the extent of a proposed transfer of part falls entirely within a parent title.
Q5: What information is required to ensure that the request for a plans report can be processed quickly?
In order to correctly identify the extent(s) for comparison, a plan or bounding description sufficient for the Keeper to reconcile the same with the OS map (the base map to the cadastral map) must be submitted. The additional information field of the online form should be used to specify the extent(s) you wish compared and the interest in these extents, so for example where a plan contains multiple references, you must clarify on the request which of the references you wish to be compared and what the interest in these are. For example – the exclusive plot edged red or the right in common to the courtyard coloured pink or the servitude right of access to the path coloured yellow. Similarly, where you wish a report to be carried out over an extent described by way of a bounding description, the text of the same should preferably be reproduced within the additional information field. Where it is deemed more appropriate to provide a copy of a prior deed containing a bounding description, the additional information field should make clear what subjects you wish to be considered. Where necessary the relevant descriptions should be highlighted or otherwise defined on the copy deed provided. If the required information is not submitted the report cannot be completed.
Q6. How will I know if an advance notice has been recorded in the Register of Sasines or entered onto the application record?
Extant advance notices will be disclosed in legal reports over registered and unregistered land. When the request for a report is not diarised for a particular date we will endeavour to issue legal reports within 24 hours of receipt. We are unable to delay despatch of reports to await any possible future registration activity such as the recording of an advance notice. Where you require an update of the position after the date of certification of your report a continuation report will provide the desired information. In respect of transfer of part applications, a plans report will disclose the existence of any extant advance notice affecting the subjects.
Reports will be certified to the end of the working day immediately preceding the date of despatch, e.g. a report completed Tuesday 12th March would reveal an Advance Notice recorded Monday 11th March.
Q7. I am experiencing difficulties uploading plans or deeds when submitting a Plans Report on the portal?
The maximum length of file name permissible, including extension (.pdf etc) is 185 characters. A maximum number of 5 deeds can be imported using the online portal. Where you require a report prepared for more complex titles, please contact our plan assistance service who will be happy to discuss you requirements.
Q8. I have a large plan that I am having difficulty scanning, how can I submit this in support of a Plans Report?
Large or unusual plans that cannot be uploaded will be accepted in support of a report request to be submitted on the portal. To arrange this facility please contact our senior plans adviser, Graeme Laurie by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone on 0131 528 3790.
Q9: Should I always use the foundation writ or the earliest recorded reference of a deed in the General Register of Sasines (GRS) as my reference?
Whilst the foundation writ is acceptable, you may also consider referring to the latest or current recorded transfer of title as a reference in the GRS.
By referring to the latest known transfer deed it will have no effect on the results that you receive. However, it will aid in locating the subjects in the register and in turn speed up the processing of your report.
Q1. My report indicates that the legal extent (deed plan) is smaller than the occupied extent as defined on the OS map. I want to register the legal extent. What should I do?
Assuming no conflicting cadastral units exist then further action is not necessary and an application for registration will be acceptable, with registration proceeding as regards the legal extent._
Q2. My report indicates that the legal extent (deed plan) is smaller than the occupied extent as defined on the OS map. I want to register the occupied extent. What should I do?
If the parties consider that the granter has a valid title to the area in question which appears to go beyond that defined in the descriptive title deed, for example, due to the operation of positive prescription on a foundation writ capable of including the land in question, then application can be made in the normal manner but the disposition submitted for registration must clearly include the area in question. This typically necessitates a new deed plan being incorporated into the disposition submitted for registration.
Where the additional subjects fall out with the granters' title, our customer services section may be able to assist in identifying an owner with a view to obtaining a conveyance of the same – further details can be found at https://www.ros.gov.uk/services/customer-services/searching-the-registers
Otherwise, our general guidance on prescriptive claimant applications can be considered at https://www.ros.gov.uk/about-us/2012-act/general-guidance/prescriptive-claimants
Q3. My report indicates that the legal extent (deed plan) is larger than the occupied extent as defined on the OS map. I want to register the legal extent (i.e. include ground outside OS boundary). What should I do?
Assuming no conflicting cadastral units exist then further action is not necessary and an application for registration will be acceptable, with registration proceeding as regards the legal extent. One of the key conditions of registration, as specified in section 23(1)(b) of the 2012 Act, is that any deed must be 'valid'. Accordingly, the Keeper will proceed with the application on the understanding that the applicant has satisfied themselves that the seller had right and title to grant.
Q4. My report indicates that the legal extent (deed plan) is larger than the occupied extent (OS map). I want to register the occupied extent (i.e. exclude ground outside OS boundary). What should I do?
Where you are content to proceed with registration limiting title to the occupied extent, then an application for registration on that basis will be acceptable. The deed submitted for registration should convey only the area of ground for which registration is sought. To meet the requirements of section 23(1)(c) of the 2012 Act, it will likely be necessary to incorporate a newly prepared plan to the deed submitted for registration.
Q5: My report indicates that there is a competing title. What should I do?
Where you are content to proceed with registration less the area of conflict, then an application for registration on that basis will be acceptable. The deed submitted for registration should convey only the area of ground for which registration is sought. To meet the requirements of section 23(1)(c) of the 2012 Act it may be necessary to incorporate a newly prepared plan to the deed submitted for registration.
Where you wish inclusion of the area of conflict, remedial action will be required. There are two main requirements under the 2012 Act in so far as the cadastral map is concerned: (i) The deed being registered must be capable of enabling the Keeper to plot the subjects on to the cadastral map; and (ii) The property extent being registered must not overlap with an existing registered title. In the event that either requirement is not met, the Keeper must reject the application. Crucially, those requirements must be met at the date the application is submitted. Accordingly, the register will require to be rectified prior to submission of your application. Further information of the rectification process can be found at https://www.ros.gov.uk/services/registration/post-registration-enquiries-and-rectifications
Q6. My report indicates that the boundaries do not coincide with the OS map. I believe the OS map is incorrect. What should I do?
Where you are satisfied that legal title corresponds with the physical features on the ground and that the base map is incorrect then you should include information to this effect with your application. The Keeper will consider matters on receipt of the application. Notwithstanding any discrepancy between legal extent and the boundaries defined on the current edition of the OS map, provided the Keeper can plot the subjects on the cadastral map then registration can proceed. Section 11(7) of the 2012 Act provides that the Keeper will update and make consequential changes in the register and cadastral map as and when the base map is updated.
Q7. Can I use the OS extract provided with my report as a deed plan?
Ordnance Survey data is subject to Crown Copyright and reproduction in whole or in part is prohibited without the prior written permission of Ordnance Survey. In the absence of evidence to the contrary the Keeper will treat applications on the basis that the applicant has satisfied themselves that the requisite permissions have been obtained.
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