As a law firm that does conveyancing, we really appreciate the efficiency of the Land Registry. In addition to being one of the most efficient government departments, we have always been impressed at how they have managed year on year to reduce their fees.
In their wisdom the government last year put forward two proposals that would prepare the Land Registry for sale in the future.
Due to overwhelming opposition to the plans the then Minister for Business Vince Cable scrapped the plans. While we celebrated the success of that victory, we knew it was only a temporary reprieve. We fully expected the privatisation of the Land Registry to be back on the agenda if the Conservative Party won the election.
In the meantime, however, plans were set in action to give the Land Registry wider powers enabling them to become providers of Local Authority Searches. This required a change in legislation.
If you looked really hard you would have found the request for this change in amongst the Infrastructure Bill along with Fracking that was included in last year’s’ Queens Speech!
Before the Bill was passed in March of this year, changes were already taking place within the Land Registry as if it was a fait accompli
We made comment about that at the time.
Since then, other changes have been put in place that have actually been detrimental to the quality of service being delivered by the Land Registry. For most services it still remains pretty impressive, but for First Registrations and in particular, Transfers of Part, we are experiencing delays of up towards 6 months! Click here to see what Today’s Conveyancer wrote about it earlier this month.
Is this a taste of things to come when the Land Registry comes under new management?
We don’t want to take the risk of finding out nor do we want the information it holds about the property our clients own – their data – to ever be in the hands of a commercial entity.
That’s why we are standing with the PCS Union, the Property Search Agents, the Legal Profession and Property Owners in this campaign to STOP the privatisation of the Land Registry.
We hope you will join us. https://apbassettsolicitors.wordpress.co