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Protect your clients from property fraud

Property fraudProperty is probably the most valuable asset your clients own. That's why it's important to be fully informed about the advice and measures we offer.

Fraudsters often target properties where there is no mortgage or the owner lives elsewhere. We know there is an increased risk of fraud when a property is empty or has been bought-to-let.

Fraudsters may attempt to deal with a property either by using a forged document to transfer it into their own name or by impersonating the registered owner.

If your client thinks they have already been the victim of property fraud:

You can help to protect your clients from property fraud by:

  • informing them of our free Property Alert service
  • checking whether their property is registered
  • advising voluntary registration if it is not
  • if it is registered, ensuring that their contact details in the register are up to date.

If your client's details are not current, they may not receive notifications from Land Registry which could be instrumental in preventing a fraud. Up to three different addresses, including an email address and an address abroad can be provided.

There is no Land Registry fee for this service.

Restrictions are also an important way of reducing the risk of property fraud. Different forms need to be used, according to whether the owner resides at the property or not.

Form RQ for owners not living at the registered property

With over 4000 properties now protected by the Form LL restriction since the RQ measure was launched in February 2012, it is being continued. Aimed at private individuals who do not live at the registered property, conveyancers can make a request to Land Registry using the Form RQ asking the registrar to enter a form LL restriction, free of charge, provided your client meets the criteria.

Simply print off the form, complete it and send it to the address shown. A separate form must be used for each registered property. Please do not send Form RQ to us with any other type of application. You can download Form RQ in Adobe's PDF format or as an MS Word document.

If your client qualifies for a form LL restriction using the RQ process but has made a previous application for this restriction using Form RX1 and paid a fee, they can request a refund of the fee provided:

  • the RX1 application was before 1 February 2012
  • they qualified as an owner who does not live at the property.

Form RX1 for owner-occupiers of a registered property

Clients who do not qualify for a restriction using Form RQ, are eligible for a restriction to be entered in their register using Form RX1. The form LL restriction ensures that we will not register a sale or a mortgage, unless a solicitor or other conveyancer has certified that the person who has signed the deed is the registered owner.

This could help to prevent a fraudster forging a signature. There is a £40 fee for this service.

The following information can be downloaded free of charge:

Additional security for companies with registered property - Form RQ(Co)

We have introduced an additional security measure for companies with registered property.

Under this free service you can make a request using a Form RQ(Co) to enter a counter-fraud restriction on up to three registered titles to your property.

The restriction is designed to help safeguard against forgery, particularly the prevention of a fraudster forging a signature. Once registered, it requires a solicitor (or other professional conveyancer) to certify that they are satisfied the company transferring or mortgaging the property is the same company as the owner before any new sale, lease or mortgage is registered. They must also certify that they have taken reasonable steps to establish that anyone who executed the deed on behalf of the company held the stated office (i.e. director, secretary or manager) at the time of execution.

Download form RQ(Co)

Please visit our questions and answers for Form RQ(Co) before completing your application.

To request the counter-fraud restriction simply complete the Form RQ(Co) and send it to us by either:

Email rq-request@landregistry.gsi.gov.uk.

Post
Citizen Centre – RQ(Co)
Land Registry Wales Office
Tŷ Cwm Tawe
Phoenix Way
Llansamlet
Swansea
SA7 9FQ

Document Exchange (DX) system
Citizen Centre – RQ(Co)
Land Registry Wales Office
DX No: 82800
Swansea (2)

Please do not send Form RQ(Co) to us with any other type of application.

To find out more about the counter-fraud process and what a restriction means see:

If you qualify but have made a previous application for a restriction using Form RX1 and paid a fee then you can request a refund of your fee, provided you made the RX1 application after 12 May 2014 (being the launch date of the RQ(CO) service).

 

House Price Index

May 2014: 276.6

(Jan 1995 = 100)

Avg. price £172,035 Change:
Monthly 0.4%
Annual 6.7%
Next index: 9.30am, 28 July 2014

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