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One of the key features of land registration system is said to be the “mirror principle”. With reference to decided cases critically examine this ...

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In law there are two types of land, registered and unregistered. It is necessary to register land so the register precisely reflects the state of the registered property, so it is clear to see who the current owner is and whether there are any third party proprietary interests affecting it; this is important as it would make many lal enquiries easier and will show the property’s reality to any future purchasers. The purpose of land registration according to Gray and Gray (2008) is that “any prospective purchaser of registered land should always be able to verify, by simple examination of the register, the exact nature of all the interests existing in or over the land which he proposes to buy”. There are three main principles of land registration: the insurance principle, curtain principle and the mirror principle. The mirror principle which essentially means that the register reflects reality hence all facts significant to the land title are to be found on the register. The significant facts that should be included in the register are “the owner, the nature of his ownership, and any limitations on his ownership and any rights enjoyed by other persons over the land that are adverse to the owner”. However this is not always the case as some third party proprietary interests override registered dispositions, these are called overriding interests. Overriding interests are binding on a purchaser of any registered land even though they are not on the register.
The Land Registration Act 1925 introduced the structure of the registered land, it has now been replaced the Land Registration Act 2002. It became very important to update the Land Registration Act 1925 as the Law commissions report made many recommendations as some of the laws w...

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...be registered. If overriding interests were illuminated it would result in many occupiers who actually have rights and interests in a land losing their homes so overriding interests should not be retained.

Clearly the overriding interests undermine from the mirror principle, overriding interests can be said to be the crack in the mirror. The register will only mirror the interests which are protected by registration and not the overriding interests which do not need to be on the register however now all interests will start to be electronically transmitted ensuring that rights will be created and registered electronically hence rights which have not been created electronically will not occur. Resulting in the register actually mirroring reality however there will always be certain some overriding interests which are necessary to protect the occupier’s interest.
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