Discussing a requisition

No one’s perfect, as the old axiom has it, and neither Land Registry nor conveyancers are any exception to this general rule.

One area where we have been working with regulators, local law societies and some selected firms is the reduction of the number of requisitions we raise where something missing, incomplete or wrongly drawn prevents us from completing a registration application.

Our caseworkers are raising thousands of individual requisition points every day and overall some 20 per cent of registration applications have to have a requisition of some kind raised.

However requisition rates vary widely between individual firms. Some have requisitions raised only 8 to 10 per cent of the time whereas with others it is very nearly 50 per cent, and all points in between.

It is not easy to be sure but our analysis suggests the time we spend on raising requisitions and dealing with responses to them is the equivalent of something approaching 100 trained caseworkers every day. In terms of applications processed that is the equivalent of some thousands of registration applications in the course of a year.

And of course there is also the cost to you of responding to our requisitions.

Of course not all requisitions can be avoided but we calculate that something in the region of 30 to 40 per cent are avoidable. This can be if, for example, the register is checked properly for variations in names between the register and documents submitted for registration, and sufficient time is allowed for any delays there might be in obtaining consents to restrictions in the register.

Common reasons

Our analysis shows that the most common reasons for requisitions do not change. These are:

  • issues relating to the discharge of charges where early completion cannot be applied
  • restrictions in the register
  • variations between the register, transfer and charge
  • execution of deeds
  • powers of attorney
  • confirmation of identity
  • company charges
  • errors in lodging e-applications (such as poor quality scanned images).

We have been running some webinars and face-to-face presentations on requisitions, including tips on how to avoid them.

So far we have done this for the Law Society and the Council for Licensed Conveyancers, and also at a local law society event in the West Country, and we have other events planned.

If your local law society – or any other group of conveyancing professionals – would like to be considered for inclusion in this programme, we would be pleased to hear from you.

Please email us at customer.service@landregistry.gov.uk.

Andrew Robertson
By Andrew Robertson,
Head Of Customer Service & Handling at HM Land Registry