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Joshua
Joshua, Lawyer
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 26069
Experience:  LL.B (Hons), Higher Prof. Dip. Law & Practice
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My Grandfather owned a area of land, which he sold to a builder

Resolved Question:

My Grandfather owned a area of land, which he sold to a builder in ~1963. We were told that their was a ransom strip on the ground which hasnt been developed. However we cannot find any documentation to show this. Now the builder is looking to build on the second piece of land now, can you advise us how to acquire any documentation.
Grandfather and his son's have all passed away now. I am the Grandson but have no members of family to ask this to, it has been mentioned at the parish meeting.
Look forward to hearing from you
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Joshua replied 2 years ago.
Joshua :

Hello and thank you for your question. I will be very pleased to assist you. I'm a practising lawyer in England with over 10 years experience.

Joshua :

Do you know if the ransom strip land is registered please?

Joshua :

Do you know which firm of solicitors your grandfather used or where he may have stored his title deeds and/or legal papers?

Customer:

Im afraid i dont know if the ransom land is registered,the solicitor my grandfather used at the time was Burgesson & Jeffereys, which i believe to have been taken over by Wilson Browne. We have contacted Wilson Browne and they cannot seem to find anything. Regards Alan

Joshua :

Thanks

Joshua :

The first step (because it is the simplest to undertake is to carry out an index map search of the area in question

Joshua :

an index map search is a search of a given area with the land registry which will return a list of all the titles which are registered for that area. It will also show any areas that are unregistered.

Joshua :

You can use the results of that search to obtain the titles of any areas of land which you believe represent the ransom strip in question. Ransom strip is usually fairly easy to spot on a plan by its very nature - being long and thin. it may be that there is an area of land comprising a ransom strip which is registered as above, or it may be that you can identify a strip of land which is unregistered and therefore is a likely candidate for the ransom strip you believe was created

Customer:

How do we go about carrying out an index search through the local county council?

Joshua :

if you find the ransom strip you believe exists is registered, then this is likely to be the best case scenario in that all that should be required is for you to obtain a copy of the title which if your suspicions are correct would likely be registered in your grandfather or his sons name and all that remains is then for you to prove succession to that title - i.e to whom that title succeeds following your grandfather's passing

Joshua :

more problematic would be if there is a ransom strip evident on the plan which is unregistered you are left in a position of having to prove title. The simplest ways of course with the benefit of title deeds but it is possible that these may never be found. If this is the case, you will need to consider claiming possessory title for the land. In order to do this, you need to reconstruct the title as best you can with the assistance of the solicitor and obtain witness statements from parties with knowledge of the circumstances you can set out what occurred and how your grandfather came to own the land and so on. It may be that there is also evidence in adjoining land titles if your grandfather sold some of this on but retained a part of it as a ransom strip. Again a property solicitor can assist you in examining these adjoining titles for evidence that may assist

Joshua :

in order to order an index map search you will need to complete the following form:

Joshua :

https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/352961/SIM.pdf

Joshua :

You will need to supply an approximate address for the land new which to search and plan showing the extent of land you wish to search - you could use a google map plan for this purpose providing it is clear.

Joshua :

There is a fee of 5 pounds to pay with your application and the result should be returned normally within 2 to 3 days

Joshua :

is there anything above I can clarify for you?

Joshua :

Does the above answer all your questions or is there anything I can help you with any further?

Customer:

so a summary would be apply for the index map and try to find the ransom strip in the name of grandfather/sons if the land is registered to one of them we just have to prove succession via birth certificate/wills etc. If the land is unregistered then look into title deeds around the location to see if the area around was originally belonging to my grandfather and claim the land via "eye witness" or testimonies from people who know the land belonged to my grandfather originally

Customer:

sorry my father is the grandson but hes not exactly computer/legal literate so i have to try and translate for him to understand

Joshua :

Exactly so. The index map search will give you the basis on which to start in order to identify the land. Hopefully if you are lucky it will be registered and therefore straightforward but this is not certain given the age of the last transaction involving the land. If not there is good chance that very helpful evidence will be associated with adjoining titles because conveyances of part of land will often be registered against the land that is transferred because they will often contain rights and obligations the buyer must observe.

e.g. if I transfer part of my garden to you I may say that you mustn't build on that part of the garden or mustn't cause me a nuisance for example. If I impose any such restrictions, a copy of that conveyance will normally be attached to the title to show the restrictions imposed.

Joshua :

Such documents can be invaluable for reconstructing title following lost title deeds if this were necessary.

Joshua :

Has the above answered your questions satisfactorily?

Customer:

We are satisfied with the answer, thank you for your time

Joshua :

I am glad I could assist. Good luck with yout investigations.

Joshua :

If you have no further questions for now I should be very grateful if you would kindly take a moment to rate my service to you today. Your feedback is important to me. If there is anything else I can help with please reply back to me though

Customer:

that's all thank you

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