HC Deb 24 March 1898 vol 55 cc757-8

I beg to ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland whether his attention has been called to the unsatisfactory working of the Local Registration of Title Act, 1891; whether he is aware that in many cases proceedings to perfect the registration of title occupy a period of two years; whether, in view of the multiplicity of offices and officers which act as a block to the sale, transfer, or other dealing in land, he will cause an inquiry to be made into the working of the Act; and whether he will introduce a Bill simplifying and expediting the procedure under the Act?


It is true that the proceedings in the registration of tenant purchasers' titles have in some cases occupied a period of two years, but apart from the rare exceptions which present inherent difficulties arising from want of proof or otherwise, the chief cause of any such delays has been the apathy or neglect of the applicants themselves to answer the requisitions issued to them by the Registrar of Titles. In those cases in which the applicants have replied registration has been effected without delay. The Act of 1891 contemplated a central office as well as local offices for each county in Ireland, and I have no evidence before me that there is a needless multiplicity of offices. I cannot give an undertaking to introduce legislation as suggested in the concluding paragraph of the Question.


Will the right hon. Gentleman hold an inquiry?


I cannot undertake to do that without preliminary inquiry.