Property Lawyer in Spain | Land Registry Property Searches

Land Registry
Property Searches


    The Land Registry in Spain is organised by books. Each page of the book is a single property which records the chain of owners, so the current owner must acquire their property from the last one recorded.

    This new purchaser will be protected from any claim about ownership if he or she acquires the property from the last recorded owner and in turn records ( inscribes) his or her own purchase. The purchaser must have ” bona fides” that is to say, that the purchaser does not know of any possible burden that the acquired property suffers and that burden is not inscribed.

    If the purchaser is aware of the existence of this burden or any other rights, even though they are not inscribed, the purchaser can not claim the Land Registry protection as he or she can not allege “bona fides”.

    This effect does not apply to the first inscribed owner and nor will any purchaser be protected from the first inscribed owner until two years from the date of the inscription.

    An owner who acquires any inscribed assets by way of gift or inheritance, will not have any more protection than the owner who gave or bequeath the assets.

    Any purchaser who acquires a property from an owner who acquired it by way of inheritance and is not one of the inheritors with a reserved share, will not be protected until two years from the date of death.

    This principle, which at first appears clear ( for example if the purchaser knew there was more than one owner apart from the seller, or someone has a credit guaranteed by the purchased property) can be tricky when the burden consists in any right that the adjoining plot has over the purchased one. In those cases, even when this right is not inscribed, it can be deemed that the external signs (drainage pipes, supporting pillars, windows, etc) make it impossible to ignore the right , and this right will be maintained if it was acquired in the proper manner
    ( by an agreement between previous owners, or through existence for a period of time, in those cases that this way of acquisition is possible, etc or in any other way that right can be acquired)

    There are also other possible pitfalls to take care of, and there are some proceeding to correcting the Land Registry


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