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PCCs and the registering of chancel-repair liability

09 November 2012


From Mr Edward Nugee QC

Sir, - A number of recent articles and letters have given the impression, if they have not actually stated it, that registration of a caution or notice relating to liability for chancel repairs can be made only up to 12 October 2013. This is not correct. The true position is that a PCC can apply for registration of a caution or notice at any time, before or after that date.

The significance of the date is (1) that if registration is made before 13 October 2013, the Land Registry cannot charge a fee, whereas, if registration is made after that date, its normal fees may be charged; and (2) that if registration is not made before 13 October 2013, a person who subsequently acquires land against which no caution or notice has been registered takes it free from the liability, and the PCC loses the right to recover the cost of repairs from the owner of that land.

There is thus an incentive for a PCC to apply for registration before 13 October 2013, but there is no limit of time within which it may do so against any land that has not changed hands on or after that date.

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