Occupiers and overriding interests
Occupiers and overriding interests

The following Property practice note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Occupiers and overriding interests
  • Nature of the interest
  • What is actual occupation?
  • Making enquiries
  • Inspecting the property
  • Interests that can never be overriding

Overriding interests are interests which are binding on property even though they are not shown on the register. They bind both the registered proprietor and any person who acquires an interest in the property.

Overriding interests fall into two categories — those that override the first registration of land and those that override a registered disposition — and the interests of persons in actual occupation of the land fall into both categories. However, the circumstances in which the interests of an occupier can override a registered disposition are more narrowly defined than the circumstances in which the interests of an occupier can override first registration.

On first registration, an interest belonging to a person in actual occupation will override an application for first registration and the newly registered proprietor will be subject to that interest.

On a registered disposition, an interest belonging at the time of the disposition to a person in actual occupation will override a registered disposition subject to exceptions. The exceptions are:

  1. an interest belonging to a person of whom enquiry was made before the disposition and who failed to disclose the interest when they could reasonably be expected to do so

    1. an interest which belongs to a person whose occupation would not have been obvious on a reasonably careful inspection of the land at the time of the disposition and

    2. of

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