Chancel repair liability

December 14, 2017

The Law Commission has announced that, as part of its Thirteenth Programme of Law Reform, it is to look at chancel repair liability:


2.30 Liability for chancel repair is the liability of certain landowners to pay for repairs to a local church. The intention of the Land Registration Act 2002 was that chancel repair liability should not bind purchasers of land after 2013 unless protected on the register. However, since the 2002 Act was brought into force, a question has arisen about the legal status of the liability, and so whether homeowners are nevertheless bound despite that Act.

2.31 This small project would aim to close the loophole and so achieve with certainty what was intended to be achieved by the Land Registration Act 2002. Doing so would eliminate the current standard practice of purchasers searching and/or insuring against the risk of liability, which costs an estimated £20 million each year. The work will take the form of either an advice to Government, or recommendations with a short draft Bill.”

The Commission’s full report is here.