Cyprus Lawyers & Legal Consultants

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George Papantoniou & Co LLC’ range of Services:

  • Legal advice and assistance with acquisition – disposal – sale of private and commercial property;
  • Drafting/review of a Immovable Property Agreements, rental agreements, construction agreements and other related agreements;
  • Arranging for legal transfer of the ownership;
  • Mortgage of immovable property;
  • Audit of immovable property;
  • Resolution of disputes;
  • Consultations on projects’ financing;
  • Interaction with various state authorities including Land Registrar;
  • Consultations on tax matters;

 

Brief Introduction:

Cypriot Land Law is quite developed in the sense that all legal rights or interests over or affecting immovable property are registered and can be traced in the registries of the Land Department kept in the District Land Offices.

Therefore a bona fide purchaser for value who has proceeded to register his interest in the Land Registry is protected over any claims by people who have not proceeded to register their interest or who hold such an interest in trust.

Any land that belongs to the government or forest land is clearly marked and there are specific rules that apply to such categories of land.

A holder of valid title deed issued by a District Land’s Office is the legal owner of such land and is protected against adverse possession and claims issued by others.

However you should be aware that a lot of properties have no issued title deeds and if you are a purchaser of land and/or house and/or flat you should take the following steps:

  1. Make a search in the Land Registry in order to determine whether the property is free of any encumbrances, charges or mortgages and identify the legal owner of such
  2. Take a legal opinion regarding the title deeds and the proposed terms of the purchase contract.
  1. If there are no title deeds issued, you should deposit the contract with the Land Registry in order to protect your legal rights.

Until the enactment of a new Sale of Land (Specific Performance) Law of 2011, there were some issues when the property developers were undergo the bankruptcy procedure or disappeared or were unable to pay off the mortgage debt of the property with the result that when the title deeds were issued, the transfer from the developer to the purchaser could not be completed.

The new legislation introduces provisions for the enhancement and upgrading of the protection of purchasers, provided that they will submit the sale agreement to the appropriate Land Office, as a safeguard that the object of the sale shall be finally registered in their names, either through the transfer procedure by the seller, or through the procedure of specific performance. 

 

Beneficial ownership is recognised by the Cyprus Land law. It confers on the owner those rights which are provided in the trust deed which is deposited with the Land Registry.

Another form of beneficial ownership is the life interest reservation. This confers on the beneficial owner the right to possess or exploit the tenement for the period of his life while the title is in the name of another.

This is usually a course adopted by parents when transferring their property to their children in order to ensure that they can exploit it until the end of their life and at the same time realise their wishes to transfer their property to the people they choose without the repercussions involved in the application of the inheritance laws of Cyprus.

 

Undivided shares:

Each undivided holder of a share of the land has a right to possession together with the others to the whole of the property without a specific part of the property being allocated to him. Large plots of land can be divided in smaller plots upon the application of the registered owner or compulsorily on the application of one of the undivided holders of the land.

 

Recourse:

If a decision of any governmental department does not satisfy you (including compensation awarded by the government for land confiscated, or decisions of the Director of the Land Registry etc), you can take legal action against.

For any questions regarding the above matters, please do not hesitate to contact us.

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Monday - Friday
08:00-18:00

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