The Land Registry has introduced a form (form CNG) to enable the registered proprietor of a property to update their name on the register following a change of gender. There is no cost for making the application however the form must be accompanied by some form of evidence – a gender recognition certificate, new birth certificate or a UK medical practitioner’s letter. If the proprietors chosen evidence is the practitioner’s letter then it must confirm that they have lived in their new gender for two years and are now known as the name specified on the form. There are procedural requirements to follow in submitting the evidence. S66(1) Land Registration Act 2002 states that any person may inspect and copy the register of title and any document kept with the Land Registry. Commercially sensitive information however may be the subject of an application to exclude it from this requirement and a change of gender application will similarly be outside the public domain.
A change of gender which results in a name change does not have to be registered at the Land Registry immediately however if the application is not made and then the proprietor wishes to sell the property in question then the buyer’s solicitors would want proof that they are the person entitled to sell the property which means providing the other side with the same evidence that the Land Registry would have asked for had the application been made to them.
Undertaking the application prior to a sale would remove the need to send copies of evidence to the solicitors, but it would be no different than a person who has changed their name after marriage providing a copy of their marriage certificate to their buyers and so the method chosen depends entirely on the choice of the proprietor.
This article is intended as a general guide only, and not a substitute for specific legal advice. We are happy to assist in providing advice on any matter that we touch upon in this or indeed any other article that we publish.