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Land Charges

Land Charges

The Local Land Charges Section fulfils a statutory requirement that all Local Authorities within England and Wales must compile, maintain and regularly update their Local Land Charges Register.

Overview

The Register contains details of all local land charges registered against a property.

The Local Land Charges Section carries out all official searches covered by the Local Land Charges Act 1975, guaranteeing complete and comprehensive replies by the Council to the Official Certificate of Search (LLC1) and Con29 enquiries.

A Local Land Charges Search is required to ensure that a prospective purchase of land is aware of the existence of any obligations or 'charges' enforceable against successive owners by either local or central government.

The Local Land Charges Register contains details of charges registered against a property, all of which are binding upon successive owners.

The register is split into twelve parts:

The information held in the register is accessed either by submitting the LLC1 forms or by carrying out a Personal Search.

In addition to the information provided by searching the Land Charges Register a potential purchaser will also wish to be made aware of other non-registerable, more general information which can be accessed by submitting enquiries on a nationally agreed form known as the Form Con29. e.g. Highway proposals, planning history, proposed tree preservation orders, road proposals or schemes, building regulations and proposed enforcement or breach of condition notices.

Land Charge Fees

Our fees must be set in accordance with Regulation 9(1) of Statutory Instrument No. 3248 2008 - Property Search Regulations - see extract below:-

Transparency in relation to setting of charges:

1.(1) During each financial year, a local authority must publish a statement setting out

(a) the estimates the local authority has made under regulation 6(2) (estimates of total costs and estimates of number or requests) in respect of the unit charge for the following year,

(b) the basis for those estimates; and the amount of the unit charge it proposes for the following financial year.

The estimated total costs of maintaining the Local Land Charges Register and answering property searches at Swale Borough Council for the financial year 2009/2010 are £233,910.00. This estimate is based on the approved budget for the section. These estimates are based upon the assumption that search numbers will continue to decline further from the 2008/2009 level.

The estimated number of requests for searches are:

The full list of Land Charge fees for Residential and Commercial /Non-Domestic property are available here.

Official Searches

There are two types of searches LLC1 and a Full Search.

LLC1 only

This consists of entries in the Local Land Charges Register only and is submitted on form LLC1. Form LLC1 is an Official request, submitted in duplicate by a Legal Practitioner or a member of the public to the appropriate Local Authority asking for a search of the Local Land Charges Register to be conducted. The Local Authority is under a statutory duty to comply with that request. The fee for the LLC1 is no longer statutory and is therefore set by each individual authority.

It does not provide any of the valuable information that is supplied in response to a Full Search.

Full Search

This type of search provides the most comprehensive information. Most LLC1 submissions are accompanied by a questionnaire called the CON29, which contains 16 standard questions and 18 additional part 2 enquiries (for which additional fees are payable). The Con29 forms should be supplied in duplicate, together with 2 copies of a plan showing the location and full extent of the property to be searched against location of the property.

Many of the questions contained on the CON29 form are considered to be 'warning' questions. Some of the information given may at a later date appear on the Land Charges Register. However, all the information given will assist a purchaser in deciding whether to proceed with the proposed purchase.

It is in reply to an Official CON29 submission that proposed road and rail schemes within a certain distance of land or property will be revealed. Only by submitting an official CON29 form can you find out about any formal or informal notices affecting a specific property. These notices could eventually lead to formal prosecutions taking place. Only an official CON29 will advise you of any proposed enforcement action, planning contravention or breach of condition notices.

Much of the information given by the local authority in reply to the CON29 form cannot be obtained from any other source.

As previously stated, in addition to the 16 standard CON29 questions there are 18 additional part 2 enquiries that may be asked depending on the type and location of the land or property. An additional fee is payable per additional enquiry. Whenever a property or parcel of land is being purchased we would strongly advise that an Official LLC1 and CON29 be submitted to the relevant Local Authority.

The fee for the Con29 is not statutory and is therefore set by each individual authority.

National Land Information Service (N.L.I.S.)

Electronic searches can be requested using one of the National Land Information Service (N.L.I.S.) Licensed Channels. The Channels are connected to the Local Land Charges Unit by the N.L.I.S. hub which acts as the gateway for information and services from a number of data providers and also provides search tracking, billing and payment mechanisms.

N.L.I.S. is a government initiative aimed at delivering services electronically, and has been designed to provide one-stop access to all land and property related information in England and Wales.

For further information and the price of an N.L.I.S. Search, please contact either of the N.L.I.S. Licensed Channels Providers listed below. For further information on how to order N.L.I.S. searches visit the website: National Land Information Service

Licensed Channel Providers:

Searchflow

Website: Search Flow
Telephone: 0870 990 9945

Personal Searches

Any person may make a Personal Search of the Local Land Charges Register by making an appointment with the Land Charges Offices at least four working days before the required time.

N.B. Appointments are available daily between 2.15pm and 4.30pm only.

We will require the following information;

  1. The name and address of the person or company wishing to carry out the Personal Search.
  2. The address/description of the property or land against which the personal search is to be made.
  3. An up to date plan with the boundaries of the property shown clearly marked, which should be received by this office at least four working days prior to the appointment.
  4. Confirmation that the prescribed fee will be paid.

The Council will then at the appointed time provide the searcher with any applicable extracts of entries from the Land Charges Register. The searcher will have to make a copy of any such information. It is important to note that a Personal Search is only of the Land Charges Register and Con29 questions will not be answered.

The standard fee for a personal search is statutory and regulated by the Lord Chancellors office.

Access to CON 29R Information

From 6th April 2009 and in accordance with new charging regulations and guidance, Swale Borough Council will be providing access to data required to answer the Con29 questions. Previously information which was not within the public domain was unavailable to third parties and this gap in information was covered by insurance. As from 6 April the insurance will no longer be accepted.

The planning@swale.gov.uk at the same time that you make your appointment for the personal search, so that the sources of the required information can be made available.

Further Information:

Land Charges - Search Fees

View the list of Local Land Charge search fees applicable

Land Charges - Customer Service Charter

These are our targets for providing a Land-Search Service as specified by Law

Land Charges - Frequently Asked Questions

This page provides answers to a number of frequently asked questions relating to Land Charges
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