The following Property Q&A produced in partnership with Shabnam Ali-Khan of Russell-Cooke provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:
In light of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, many solicitors and conveyancers are now working from home. As a result most documents such as leases and transfers are being sent to clients by email for execution rather than by post. Since the lockdown rules were slightly relaxed earlier in May there are more people physically going into work provided they do not need to rely on public transport for their journey. Therefore, some documents are now being posted out.
A key problem arises at the other end. How can a client execute a document if they are restricted by the lockdown? They may face difficulties finding an independent witness as well as issues leaving their home to post the document. This could be a serious issue if they are self-isolating. One of the questions practitioners are faced with is are such documents capable of being signed electronically?
HM Land Registry has been producing regular guidance during this pandemic to assist. Essentially a
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