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Buachaill, Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 10977
Experience:  Barrister 17 years experience
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I have a restrictive cover ant on my land stating that I cannot

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I have a restrictive cover ant on my land stating that I cannot build on the land. This was put in place by the previous owner who also owned much of the land around. He has since sold lots of small pieces of land. I believe the covenant is no longer relevant but I believe that the originator is now dead and be use of the break-up of local land have no idea who the beneficiary would be... How do you suggest I continue?
1. The thing you need to realise is that a restrictive covenant attaches to land and is usually registered as a burden on the land. So just because the creator of a restrictive covenant is dead, this does not mean that the successor or new owner won't seek to implement the restrictive covenant, as the covenant runs in favour of every subsequent owner of the land, not just the creator. So, despite the fact you don't know who the beneficiary of the deceased creator's estate, this does not mean that the restrictive covenant has lapsed or is unenforceable. Quite the contrary.
2. Whoever has inherited the land from the originator of the restrictive covenant will now have the benefit of that restrictive covenant. Accordingly, if you suddenly seek to build something, the new owner/beneficiary will pop up and seek to prevent you building. However, you should search in the land Registry and see who has inherited. Alternatively, get a copy of the originator's will in the District Probate Registry in Leeds, if the will has been admitted to probate, and see who is the heir and beneficiary of the land. Then you would have to negotiate a release from the terms of the restrictive covenant with the new owner.
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Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Thank you but you miss the main point which is that the beneficiary has broken up the land into further items which have all been sold to different people. How do you work out who the beneficiary is in this case so that they can be approached ?
4. SElling different plots of land is like dividing a cake with a cherry on top of it. Assume the restrictive covenant is the cherry, and as each slice of land or cake, is cut off, there is a piece left with the restrictive covenant. So you have to start in the Land Registry with the original folio and see whether it still retains the restrictive covenant or whether the benefit of the restrictive covenant was sold to one piece of land or not. If you need help on this, I would suggest you speak with an experienced conveyancing solicitor. Be aware that the usual process of sale is a process of subtraction, whereby a slice of land (or cake) is taken away from the original piece. So an experienced conveyancer will be able to see, in each conveyance, what was the piece and the rights subtracted. To get to the piece with the restrictive covenant.
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Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Thank you. I think I therefore know the answer now and can proceed from here. Thanks very much. 5 stars on the way.