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Land Registration Act 2002

Section 54: Proceeds of sale: chargee’s duty

101.This provision is new. It deals with the following issue. Where a mortgagee exercises its power of sale the proceeds are held in trust. After satisfying certain payments, any surplus is held on trust for “the person entitled to the mortgaged property” (section 105 of the Law of Property Act 1925). The effect is that a mortgagee will hold the surplus on trust for any subsequent mortgagee of whose mortgage it has notice, actual, constructive or imputed. Where the mortgage relates to unregistered land, the mortgagee should search the Land Charges Register to discover the existence of any subsequent mortgages because registration constitutes actual notice. Under the Land Registration Act 1925 registration does not confer notice. Therefore, under the present law, a chargee should pay any surplus to the chargor unless he has been notified of the existence of a subsequent charge. Section 54 changes the law. As a result of the provision, the chargee will have to consult the register to determine who is entitled to the surplus.

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