IntroductionThe Land Registration Act 2002 (LRA 2002) was enacted in response to the Law Commission Report No. 271, replacing the Land Registration Act 1925 (LRA 1925), whereby the Law Commission and Land Registry visualised a much simplified and modernised approach to the law of land registration through a very novel method of e-conveyancing. Even though this was the fundamental aim, the Act further seeks to ensure a reduction of risk in acquiring unsafe titles by focusing on registration as the way to, and proof of, title. As such, the law commission endeavoured to secure the exchange of land for both the purchaser and the proprietor. Subsequently, the most noteworthy change and will have the most effect on the land registration is that the register ought to be a total and exact impression of the condition of the title of land at any given time and that the purchaser ought to have the capacity to research title to the land that they are thinking of buying on the internet without further difficulties or enquiries. This essay will critically discuss the current progress of the implementation of LRA 2002 and challenges to its full implication.1. Progress of implementation of LRA 2002LRA 2002 has gone to great lengths to ensure the position of a purchaser. In spite of the fact that the 2002 Act does not deny the presence of unregistered land, it has made each move to dispose of the unregistered title sooner rather than later. In the expressions of Law Commission, the unregistered land ‘has had its day’ . Thus there is an obligatory registration on most dispositions of interests in land and that as a result will ensure good title. The register of title is proposed to work as a “mirror”, this is one of the three basic principles of land registration. Hence, the “mirror principle” implies that the register ought to be a precise mirror of the interests that exist on the land and in this way the ownership could be precisely related to the propriety benefits and burdens influencing the land.The 3 basic principles of Land RegistrationFurthermore, as electronic conveyance was introduced as a hope to reduce the risk to a purchaser acquiring unsafe titles, just by going online and verifying the ownership of the land that they are thinking of buying which is seemingly available on the register. And this is accomplished through the “mirror principle” where technology is utilized to guarantee that reflection of rights is more exact and there is no further need of examination of title as it is all accessible on the register.Insurance principle and curtain principle are the other two key principles of land registration. First and foremost, the insurance principle alludes to the guarantee protected by the law that in any case of misfortune incurred by a registered land due to the reliance on upon by the purchaser on the land registry will be remunerated through public funds. So, in the event that you are a buyer and depended on the data provided on the land registry and it was incorrect and you endured loss as a result of this then you are more than qualified for a compensation. Next is the curtain principle, this is principle which hides some of the equitable interests attached to the land, but are not disclosed on the land register from the view of the potential buyers. The operation of Registered Land: TitlesFurthermore, under LRA 2002, very few estates in land can have registerable title, this is on the account that a few estates are ruled out for practical or lawful reasons, for example, the time span may be too short to require safety of registration. At the moment, the registerable titles are either a legal freehold or a legal leasehold of more than 7 years. So, where a sale took place after the enactment of LRA 2002 any transfer of unregistered free-hold or leasehold estate of more than 7 years will be subject to mandatory registration. Meaning, not registering when required to do so will lead to the buyer having insufficient protection and will only be able to have an equitable title to that land. Thus, he will be exposed to a lot of risk and uncertainty and will not be able to take full advantage of the priority rights which is provided under section 28 and section 29 of the 2002 Act. Moreover, he will be at a great disadvantage because of the fact that the registered owner will always look for other parties for further dealings of the land. Consequently, not all of the estates can be registered in their own right, and these two qualifying titles are in every way that really matters the most significant indicia of land ownership in the modern land law. Overriding InterestsAnother important change in the LRA 2002 was in regard to “overriding interests” which has played an enormous part in the “crack in the mirror” rule as the LRA 1925 indicated to the interests which are not significant to be registered and can override registration and can be gathered as “minor interests”. Subsequently, the old enactment considered ‘proprietary entitlements that were listed outside of the register’. Even though, the 2002 Act is believed to be ruthless in its operation, unregistered interests that override still takes precedence despite those not being entered in the register. Which means that it halts LRA 2002 from working the mirror principle at its complete capacity which is a noteworthy flaw in the framework.The still ongoing debate with respect to ‘overriding interests’ is the protection accessible to persons in ‘actual occupation’ of the land in issue. In Williams and Glyn’s Bank v Boland, it was expressed that the occupiers’ spouse’s beneficial interest was overriding as a result of her actual occupation. Finally, schedule 3 of the 2002 Act provides the provision to the section 70(1)(g) of the previous act whereby it provides that if a person is asked of his interest and he fails to disclose it, then he loses his status as an overriding interest. In any case, the LRA 2002 lessened the impact of these minor interests that can be still be binding in spite of the reality that they are unregistered on the register which are currently known as “interests that override” as opposed to “overriding interests”.Furthermore, the category of overriding interest which replaced the section 70(g) of the former legislation incorporate land charges, legal easements, profit a prendres, public rights of way and right to lease reserved to the Crown. Additionally, any rent that is under seven years are not required to be recorded on the register but rather is as yet binding on other parties. The entire basis behind this was to locate a middle ground between a proprietor who may like to hold the land for longer timeframe compared to a person who might lease it for short period. Hence, the interest of a person who is in “actual occupation” are not required to be recorded on the register however this can bind any future registered interests. The LRA 2002 offers priority to overriding interests regardless of those not being protected on the register. The question of what constitutes an “actual occupation” and what that actually means was best portrayed by Lord Wilberforce when he expressed that it is plain English word and the word actually emphasizes is that physical presence is required. Nonetheless, the topic of physical presence was again raised in the case of Abbey National Building Society v Cann, whereby it was held that it was sufficient even if the person claiming actual occupation was not physically present but rather had someone taking care of the property.Overriding interests became such a concern to the Law Commission and Land Registry while formulating the LRA 2002 but because their economic and social significance is to such an extent that they cannot be abstained from. In any case, the 2002 Act can diminish the effect of overriding interests, to lessen their number and to encourage their enlistment on the register. If the register is not to be seen as a perfect mirror, reviewing the land and any related documents will still be essential and pure e-conveyance would not be possible.Adverse possession LRA 2002 offers preferable security over the 1925 Act with respect to adverse possession. This protection acts as a ‘trigger’ for voluntary registration, which leads to an increased number of registered titles and allowing the registered owners of the land to be notified of any adverse possession. Under the old law, an adverse possessor could procure title to a land on the off chance that he was in occupation 12 long years. However, Under LRA 2002, it is harder for the occupier to secure a title in light of the fact that the Act requires them to be registered following 10 years of occupation, so the registrar allows the registered proprietor to expel the adverse possessor. The enactment of LRA 2002 was more or less due to the fact that adverse possession had become more common and easier. The case of Pye v Graham is a principle example of lawful injustice, marked as ‘Britain’s biggest ever land grab’. if this case was heard under LRA 2002, the claimant would have had the right to evict the adverse possessor once he had possessed the property for 10 years. The Act has seismically changed how adverse possession works, now, an adverse possessor can no longer deny a registered proprietor of his land. As Martin Dixon viewed, the act has ’emasculated’ adverse possession. The doctrine of adverse possession continues to remarkably limit the protection provided by way of registration, and, indeed, has been given statutory permission to do so.2. Challenges faced in completing full implementation of e-conveyancingLRA 2002 had laid down the framework for e-conveyancing whereby it provides that this system is equipped for enabling electronic conveyancing of documents, online examination of title, communication between different parties, simultaneous completion and registration, and as a result would address the limitation of manual conveyancing by saving time and money and reducing any delays and consequently bring a more prominent transparency. However, since the laws relating to property transfer are tremendously complicated, it has become quite the challenge to convert the paper based systems which had been developed for over a period of several centuries to a straightforward electronic process.Members of the public are overwhelmingly in favour of e-conveyancing, and solicitors are for the most part as well but, it is still agreed that some fundamental issues need to be resolved. There was a general agreement that the land registry’s proposition was a decent beginning stage. But many experts had the reservation that it might be difficult to dismiss professional turf-guarding. And the proposal that the solicitors were supposed to sign the e-documents on behalf of their clients became an alarming point. “The main concerns highlighted are the risk of creation of misunderstanding between conveyancer and the client, fraud, and dealing with unusual ways of executing documents,” the land registry commented. Electronic SignaturesThe Electronic Communications Act 2000 and the Electronic Signatures Regulations 2002 completely defined the e-signatures laws in the UK. Whereby it is stated that they can incorporate a pdf or picture document of a signature which is sent by email as an alternative for the signatory signing the contract face to face, or even the addition of the person’s name or initials toward the end of the email. Under the Electronic Communications Act 2000 every one of these methods would conceivably add up to being legally binding methods for executing a document. Nonetheless, there are several obstacles that may emerge.The value of property transactions is quite high in today’s economically driven world and so is the amount of hacking or internet fraud and identity thefts, so it is not unexpected that the new system has held the interest of critics. With respect to many popular beliefs this new system of e-signature is widely open to impersonation, tampering and evidential consideration. it is believed that it is substantially much easier for somebody to steal the file of an image or make a duplicate of an electronic signature and pretend that it is the actual signatory than faking a hand-written ink signature. Moreover, in today’s world there is nothing easier than tampering with emails without leaving any trace of the foul play behind. Furthermore, challenges may emerge when trying to prove that the e-signature is genuine and even more difficult to prove that the signatory intend to be bound by it.However, the Land Registry calls attention to that the current framework of paper-conveyancing is also a long way from being free of abuse, and e-conveyancing in actuality may decrease these potential risks. With expanded use of electronic documents, forgery will be even more effectively distinguished, bringing about the forged document’s invalidation. Furthermore, the passwords and other safetymeasures that will be required for electronic signatory fraud will not likely occur without the knowledge of an authorized personnel. Nonetheless, the utilization of electronic signatures and e-conveyancing applications all in all must find a suitable harmony amongst ease of use and security. New electronic formality provisionWritten agreements, whether they are in the form of a deed or a contract will become completely ineffective when section 93 of the LRA 2002 comes into force. This is believed to be utmost important to make e-conveyancing the only system. In order to undermine e-conveyancing, it is expected, that there would be a boom in proprietary estoppel claims by those who believe they are complying with legal formality requirements by having a written agreement, however section 93 will not allow it. Under s.93 some specific disposition will have effect only if they are electronically registered. This is basic and lies at the core of the e-conveyancing framework. It implies that it will not be likely at all to make certain sorts of propriety rights except by way of electronic registration. The rights subject to these provisions could include all registered dispositions and all the third-party rights that ae capable of protection by way of an entry of notice on the register. Obviously, this speaks to a significant change in the way we see and make propriety rights and obligations. If and when all the provisions under LRA 2002 becomes fully enforced, the failure to comply with all the mandatory electronic formalities will not even add up to a creation of equitable right, not to mention one existing at law. Consequently, this provision is subject to a lot of criticism as it is seen that there is a lack of any safety net, no right capable of binding the parties between or among themselves, no contrast between legal and equitable rights and no right which is capable of overriding under schedule 1 or 3 of the 2002 Act by way of actual occupation. FraudA further concern emerges from the minute however estimated degree of rebel conveyancers who look to benefit financially through fake fraudulent transactions. Schedule 4 of LRA 2002 accommodates amendment of the register in these conditions. It provides that the court may make an order for modification of the register in order to correct the misstep. According to the Law Commission’s explanatory notes the law under fraudulent transfer will be provides in this provision. Additional concerns have been emerged over the issue of responsibility and liability for the registrar, this is due to the fact that other people except the registrar will have the capacity to make entries. In a similar manner it has been questioned whether the solicitors will bear the liability for fraudulent clients. The Law society is of the view that the burden of proof should be on the Land registry to show that the solicitor has acted fraudulently before being liable for their clients. Concerns have been communicated in regard to the security of an electronic system and the likely-hood for a higher risk of error or fraud. The Law Commission has consoled experts and critics that great many lengths are being taken so as to avoid these circumstances and has reassured in their defence that the ‘out-dated’ paper conveyancing is itself not invulnerable to fraud. However, it is assured that security will be the biggest priority when e-conveyancing is fully enforced as the Registry ensures title and heavy repayments will be the consequence otherwise. EfficiencyCritics have likewise addressed whether electronic conveyancing will be more productive than the conventional framework. In spite of the fact that the present paper-based framework is inefficient, a significant number of delays we experience will not be eliminated by the utilization of advanced technology. Sellers and purchasers all have their own particular set of agendas and a standardized method. After all, agreements will still need drafting, and there still need to be negotiation of indemnity insurance policies. And on the largest cause of delay in conveyancing, the obtaining of mortgage, will still not be lessened. However, even though e-conveyancing applications face numerous challenges, the potential benefits of enforcing this new conveyance methods to an outdated and unfit process cannot be overlooked.Legal issuesAnother challenge is that to bring about such a huge change like the introduction of e-Conveyancing ought to be effectively utilised for a major clean-up of previously used overall system for the benefit of the general public. In order to do this, it is vital to confirm that all land transaction done by way of e-Conveyancing system is legally satisfactory. So, a full guarantee is needed that all the legislative rules, which will be essential to allow the lawful operation of the framework, are in order at the required time; and a guarantee that the system, as it is developed, is legally fit for the purpose without any gaps or flaws and no questions could be raised against it.ConclusionIn this digital age, the most sacred laws in Land law is undergoing unprecedented changes by way of LRA 2002 and it is legitimately believed widely across the entire world, that e-conveyancing is, undeniably, the wave of the future. It has already been effectively adopted in Australia and is in progress in other common law jurisdictions including the UK. The Law Society perceive that change is long past due and that the e-conveyancing system will empower procedural and administrative changes to be executed quickly and reliably across the country. However, one must bear in mind that any misfortunate incidents with the conveyancing system could create uncertainties and provide reason to feel doubtful about the whole framework and furthermore, could disrupt the UK economy.