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Property & Real EstateConversion of Land Registration Units in Kenya: What You Need to Know 2021

In this legal alert, we brief you on whether your land is affected by the decision of the Cabinet Secretary for Lands and Physical Planning announced on 31st December 2020 through Kenya Gazette Notice No. 11348.

What does Land Registration Mean?

This means the registration of parcels of land in Kenya. Each parcel is divided into units with a register for each parcel of land in Kenya. Land registration is guided by the Land Registration Act and the Land Act.

How is Land Registered in Kenya?

Well, prior to colonization, Kenya had no formal system for land registration. When the British arrived in Mombasa, they introduced the systems that had worked in the United Kingdom and other colonies such as India. However, this system was complicated as it introduced a myriad of laws. Some might sound familiar like the Registration of Land Act (RLA), the Indian Transfer of Property Act (ITPA), or the Government Lands Act (GLA). Each of these meant a separate registration and titling system, hence the complications. Currently, the land is now registered under the Land Registration Act and the Land Act.

How can I know which category my parcel of land falls under?

Titles of land look different, some are booklet style with the photographs of the owners and the previous owners attached inside (i.e. GLA titles), some are extra large with ribbons on the side (i.e. some with IR numbers in addition to LR numbers). Talk to us to and we will explain what sort of title you have, free of charge!

What’s the new change?

Harmonization is the name of the game here. With the various laws that governed our nation, there have been many issues relating to land with sometimes violent clashes. It’s well-known that there are issues with our Land Registries but with the coming of the Constitution of Kenya, 2010, we not only recognized these problems but addressed the need for change. Having a single land registration system is part of the solution. So for example, if your parcel was L.R. No. 209/7229 the new land registration number will be L. R. No. Nairobi/Block 1/1.

Who’s affected by the conversion of land registration?

For now, only the parcels within Nairobi County. The Gazette Notice issued by the Hon. Cabinet Secretary of Lands and Physical Planning notifies landowners within the Nairobi Land Registration Unit. Though the law states that all 47 counties shall be Land Registration Units.

Harmonization is the name of the game here.Having a single land registration system is part of the solution. So for example, if your parcel was L.R. No. 209/7229 the new land registration number will be L. R. No. Nairobi/Block 1/1…for now, only the parcels within Nairobi County will be affected by the changes.

What if I am against the conversion of land registration?

This is where we come in aside from helping you convert your parcel. A complaint can be made to the Registrar but this is time-limited and set at 90 days from the 31st December 2020 this means that the deadline for any complaints would be 6th May 2021.

I want to know if my land is affected.

We are here to help, we will verify if your land is affected and thereafter we will advise you on the way forward. All you have to do is call us or email us and send us a copy of your title. Don’t worry, any information you send to us is strictly confidential! Call us today.

I am a foreigner and I own land in Kenya, How am I affected?

The changes are in effect not massive since the shift in legislation that only allows foreign ownership of land for a maximum lease of 99 years. If your lease is about to expire or you’re apprehensive about these changes, please get in touch with us by clicking the buttons below and we’ll be happy to guide you through this conversion process or to apply for a new lease on your behalf.

Is there a tax implication?

Not particularly, of course, there are charges relating to the conversion and these will be paid to the Land Registrar. We are able to advise you on any liabilities in terms of government charges and taxes.

 

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