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Extra Checks To Prevent Property Fraud

HM Land Registry is introducing extra checks to improve the security of the process of applying to remove a mortgage from a title register. The changes will specifically affect the DS1 form and are intended to reduce the risk of property fraud.
The checks will help to identify and prevent fraudulent applications earlier in the process, but may cause delays in some applications.
Customers can apply to remove a mortgage from the register by using one of three ways:

  • completing form DS1 and submitting via post or other online channels
  • sending an electronic DS1 through HM Land Registry’s Lender Services
  • sending an electronic discharge through a virtual private network

The Land Registry stated “When customers apply to remove a mortgage with form DS1, the extra checks mean it may take us longer to complete the application.  Customers can help by removing mortgages from the register using an e-DS1 or an electronic discharge. These are submitted directly by the lender or their agent and help to reduce the risk of property fraud. They will also help customers avoid delays with their applications.  Lenders can also help by responding quickly to our checks.  Maintaining the integrity of the Land Register is vital because it provides:

  • a reliable record of information about the ownership of and interests affecting land and property
  • land and property owners with a title which is guaranteed by the state
  • the financial sectors capability to secure lending against property”

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