How to Fill in Form OC2




 



Anyone is entitled, on payment of a small fee, to request (using form OC2) an Official Copy of any document filed under any title number if it is either (1) referred to in the Register of Title or (2) a document relating to an application made to the Land Registry.

The layout of Form OC2

Most people’s immediate reaction, when looking at form OC2 is to ask why a form for such a simple function has to be so complex. A large part of the complexity arises from the fact that the form distinguishes between two classes of document, one of which will only be searched for in the title number you enter at the top of the form, and one of which may, optionally, be searched for under an alternative title number. In order to keep things simple, I would suggest that you use a separate OC2 form for each title number that you want searched for copies of documents. Not only does this make filling in the forms easier, it means that you can send an OC2 form for each title number you wish to search in a separate envelope to the Land Registry. All other things being equal this may mean that you get a faster turnaround because the forms may be dealt with by different people in parallel (and the fact that each form is for a separate title number means that there will be no delay caused by staff “fighting over” the paper files for a title number).

How to fill in form OC2

Fill in the Title Number that you want to be searched for documents in box 2. 

The purpose of boxes 1 and 3 is as a double check in case you make a mistake when entering the title number

List the documents you would like copies of in section 7 then work out the fee payable for the copies and enter the fee in box 4. Put your address - where the copies requested should be sent to - in box 5

The following notes will help you fill in details of each document you require in section 7

Have a look at the Register of Title for the title number you are searching and see if the document you are seeking a copy of is mentioned in the Register of Title. There are four possibilities

1. The document is referred to in the Register and there is a note saying COPY FILED but giving no title number (indicating that it is filed under this title number)

2. The document is referred to in the Register and there is a note saying COPY FILED UNDER and giving a title number

3. The document is referred to in the Register but there is no note saying COPY FILED 

4. The document is not mentioned in the Register 

In the case of 1 you should write the type of document (e.g. Conveyance, Transfer, Deed) and the date of the document on one of the lines in section 7. The Land Registry expect you to always give the date for a document because you can get that from the mention of the document in the Register.

In the case of 4 a copy of the document may or may not be filed under the title number you are searching. If you want the Land Registry to search for it you should give as much information about the document as you can. “Conveyance from Smith to Jones dated 14/08/1956” would be ideal but if you do not know the exact date you could write “Conveyance from Smith to Jones dated sometime in the 1950s” in one of the lines in section 7.

In the case of 2 you know that a copy of the document is not filed under this title number so do not enter details of the document on the current OC2 form you are filling in but, of course, you can fill in a separate OC2 form to obtain a copy of the document filed under the title number stated.

In the case of 3 this indicates that a copy of the document is not filed under this title number but before you fill in another OC2 form to search for it in some other (e.g. neighbouring) title number it is still worth searching first under the current title number because in a small percentage of cases a document referred to in the Register for a title is actually filed under that title number even though the Register indicates that it isn't. So write the type of document (e.g. Conveyance, Transfer, Deed) and the date of the document on one of the lines in section 7. 


In response to your requests on form OC2 the Land Registry will either supply a copy of the document or else they will respond saying that the document could not be located from the information you supplied. If you were not able to specify the precise date of the document, and you get a response saying it could not be located from the information you supplied, that unfortunately leaves you not knowing whether the document is definitely not filed under the title number you quoted in box 2 or whether, whilst it has not been found under that title number based on the information you supplied, if only you had been able to supply more precise information it might have been located in the file for that title number.

Unfortunately there is no easy solution to this conundrum. The Land Registry will not provide a comprehensive list of the documents they hold for a title number and they will reject any OC2 request which says, for example "all conveyances from 1960 to 1970". You have to request one document per row in section 7 of the OC2 form and all you can do is to provide as much information as you can about each document you are seeking. If you do not know the exact date of a document some ways in which you can try to find out the date are explained in the next three paragraphs.

You can submit an enquiry to the Land Registry. An enquiry is separate from an OC2 request so you can't ask for a copy of a document by making an enquiry but the answer to an enquiry may give you information which you can then use to fill in a row in section 7 of the OC2 form. The quality of replies from the Land Registry to enquiries varies but you will have the best chance of receiving a useful reply if you ask a focused question such as "I am interested in the position of the boundary between title AB123435 and CD654328. Can you tell me what Transfer of Part documents are filed in the date range 1960 to 1990 which may shed light on this?".   

Every title number will have been created as a result of someone submitting an Application Form to the Land Registry and you can request, in section 7 of an OC2 form "The Application Form which resulted in title number AB123456 being created" to get the earliest Application Form for a title number. You should not need to quote the date of the Application Form which created a title because Land Registry staff should be able to identify it without the date - it will normally be the first thing on the file. The Application Form which resulted in the new title number being created could be an Application Form for First Registration when previously unregistered land is registered for the first time, or it could be an Application Form to Change when part of land in an already registered title is sold off - this results in the creation of a new title number for the land sold off. An Application Form to Change submitted on a transfer of the whole of an already registered piece of land would not normally result in any new title number being created but, in the days before computers when the Land Registry used purely manual filing systems tied to the alphabetic prefix of title numbers, from time to time the Land Registry would change its manual filing systems and start using different alphabetic prefixes, and often would use the occasion of receipt of an Application Form to Change as a convenient opportunity to change the title number to the new format even if the transaction was a transfer of whole. This happened, for example, in the 1960s when title number prefixes for registered land outside London were changed from P (meaning "provincial") to a two letter prefix identifying the county or region. So occasionally you may find that the Application Form to Change which created a new title number was in fact a transfer of whole rather than a transfer of part. In all cases you can request, on a row in section 7 of the OC2 form "The Application Form which resulted in title number AB123456 being created" to get the earliest Application Form for that title number. 

The Land Registry has an essentially passive role, considering and processing Application Forms which are sent to it. Occasionally the Land Registry will do something of its own initiative, such as producing a new Title Plan in accordance with the latest Ordnance Survey map, but mostly changes to an existing title number only happen when someone submits an Application Form. So every time something happens to a title number there will normally be an Application Form, which is filed under that title number, and which you can obtain a copy of (using form OC2) if you know (or can find out by enquiry) its approximate date.        

When you obtain a copy of an Application Form, it may indicate that it was accompanied by a list of documents. If so, you can then request, using a further OC2 form, a copy of that list of documents - e.g. ask for "The List of Documents Form which accompanied the Application Form dated 1/7/2014". From the Application form itself and/or any accompanying List of Documents you will be able to see dates and types of documents which accompanied the Application Form and, now armed with the exact dates of these documents, you can then request copies, using form OC2, with greater chances of success than if you had to guess at the dates. If one of the documents listed is an Abstract of Title or Epitome of Title then when you get a copy of that, that will list further documents which you can then also request using Form OC2.

In the past Land Registry staff would, where appropriate, have regard to what the obvious intention behind a request was and provide what it was thought the requestor was really after. For example, the first entry in section A (Property Register) of the Register of Title will, in nearly every case, have a date which is the date of first registration of the land now in the title number but this is not always the date that this title number was created because the current title number may have been created when a piece of already registered land was split in two. In the past if you had requested the Application Form for for First Registration of the title quoting a title number but that title number was not in fact created by first registration but was created when an existing registered title was split in two, the Land Registry would probably have supplied a copy of the Application Form for the original title number on the basis that that was probably what you wanted. But nowadays a stricter approach prevails so it is important to be as precise as you can be when requesting a document in section 7 of Form OC2.


Disclaimer

This information page is designed to be used only by clients of John Antell who have entered into an agreement for the provision of legal services. The information in it is necessarily of a general nature and is intended to be used only in conjunction with specific advice to the individual client about the individual case. This information page should not be used by, or relied on, by anyone else.

This page was lasted updated in March 2017 Disclaimer