Conversion of Land Parcels in Kenya

Conversion of Land Parcels in Kenya

When we talk of conversion, we are simply referring to the migration of title deeds issued under multiple land regimes into a single land regime under the Land Registration Act of 2012.

This simply means that the normal Land Registration Process will now be centralized under a single land regime.

The process of conversion

In order for the conversion of Land parcels to take place, a few steps must be put in place.

The conversion begins with the Ministry of Lands preparing cadastral maps, graphical indices of parcels and a conversion list which will show the old land reference number and the new ones.

The second step is the publication of these cadastral maps, the graphical indices of parcels as well as the conversion list.

Thereafter, the third step would be for any person with an interest in land in the registration unit to lodge a complaint to the registrar who shall resolve the same within 90 days of receipt.

At the commencement date, all registers shall be closed and all transactions carried out in the new register. However, all the closed registers and supporting documents shall be maintained in the new registration unit.

The final step is for application for replacement of title documents from the closed registers.

A notice will be published in at least two newspapers of nationwide circulation inviting registered land owners to make application for replacement of title documents from the closed registers.

Commencement date of transactions in the new register

In order for registered land owners to know of the commencement date of the transactions in the new registers, they should be aware that the date is captured in two newspapers of nationwide circulation.

It is also announced in radio stations of nationwide coverage inviting registered owners to make the application.

The Lands Ministry aims in completing the migration process in the entire country by December of 2022.

In February 2021, the ministry had already published all Land parcels within Nairobi County and thus receiving and considering complaints for the already published parcels.

Required documents in Title replacement

The application shall be accompanied by the original title and the owner’s identification documents. The registrar will replace title deeds with new ones but retain the old title documents for record and safe custody.

The process of the replacement of old title deeds is absolutely free.

Boundaries and ownership after conversion of Land parcel numbers

Replacement of the title deeds will follow a process set by the Land Registration order, passed by parliament in 2017. This will fully utilize use of Registry Index Maps (RIMs) as registration instruments.

This will replace the deed plans and further minimize land fraud.

These Registry Index Maps are generated from survey plans with fixed boundaries therefore no boundaries will be affected.

The conversion of the parcel numbers does not affect the ownership, size or any other interests registered under a specific title deed. The title is simply replaced with a title under the Land Registration Act, 2012.

What to do in the event that one has a complaint

In the event that an individual may have a complaint, it should be submitted in writing to the Registrar in the Ministry of Lands in Form LRA 96 with respect to information contained in the conversion list as well as the cadastral maps.

The Law has subjected the Registrar to resolve any complaints submitted within 90 days of receipt.

A complainant can also apply to the Registrar in Form LRA 67 for registration of a caution pending the clarification or resolution of any complaint.

Key Pointers

Land owners should look out for Gazette notices on conversion, publication of conversion list as well as cadastral maps in the Daily newspapers and radio announcements. They should also look out for the specification from the Cabinet Secretary of the date for commencement of dealings and transactions within the registration unit and replacement notices.

Third-Party proprietorship

If a title is held by a third party as security, i.e. courts, banks or hospitals, it can be replaced on application by the proprietor.

The proprietor will be needed to liaise with the third party in order to facilitate the replacement.

The third party can’t change ownership as the conversion process does not involve change in the ownership of a title.

Encumbrance

The existing claims, interests or mortgages registered against your title will automatically be migrated to the new Register in the Lands Ministry.

How to access the Forms

All prescribed forms under the Land Registration Act, 2012 can be downloaded from the website of the Ministry of Lands.

Visit the website via lands.go.ke and click on the pull-down menu at the top left part of the page. This will prompt a list of options to drop down. On the list of options, click on the ‘Resources’ tab which will toggle another drop down menu.

On that menu, click on ‘Forms’

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