Land documents in Nigeria refer to the various legal instruments or documents that are used to establish, transfer, and convey land or ownership rights in Nigeria. These documents are important for ensuring that land transactions are conducted legally and that the rights of both buyers and sellers are protected. Also, the documents that may be relevant to each land transaction may vary with the nature of the ownership and with each transaction.
Let’s highlight some of the commonly used land documents in Nigeria:
We all know how relevant a receipt is, a receipt in a real estate transaction is a document that confirms that a land seller has received the agreed amount of money from the buyer. Without this document, the seller can wake up one morning and say he was never paid the complete amount even if he was fully paid, and win the case if taken to court. This document shows the amount paid and the name of the person paid to. It is often required when registering land.
This is a document that shows you are the new owner of the property. The document is an important one and that should not be overlooked.
It is also referred to as ‘deed of conveyance ‘ which means the process of transfer of ownership. It shows evidence that the seller has transferred all ownership, right, and title on the land to the buyer.
The deed of Assignment contains important information. Information like the date the land was transferred to the new owner and a clear description of the land.
After the exchange of the deed between both parties. It has to be recorded in the land registry to show legal proof that the land has exchanged hands.
DEED OF GIFT: This is a legal document used to transfer ownership rights from one person (Donor) to another (Donee) without any monetary consideration. It is often used in cases where a parent wants to gift a piece of land to a child, relative or any other person. It can be used to transfer ownership of a parcel of land permanently to another person.
POWER OF ATTORNEY: This is a legal document that authorizes a person to act on behalf of another person in matters relating to land transactions. It is often used where the owner of a parcel of land is unable to act by himself in a property transaction. A power of Attorney may or may not be by Deed.
SURVEY PLAN: This is a document that shows the exact measurements and boundaries of a piece of land. It is used in cases where a land transaction is being carried out. A survey plan is usually drawn by a Registered Surveyor and it is usually attached to a Deed of Assignment or Conveyance.
CERTIFICATE OF OCCUPANCY (C OF O): This is a legal document issued by the government to indicate that the holder has the legal right to own and use a particular parcel of land for a specified period of time. The C of O is issued by the State Government of the State where the land is located. A purchaser of a parcel of land covered by a C of O is not required to apply for another one, he is only required to register a deed of assignment with the governor’s consent.
You should note that a receipt is not the same thing as a deed of assignment. While a receipt proves that money was involved in the transaction. A deed of assignment proves ownership of a piece of property.
Before you carry out any real estate transaction be sure to collect a receipt that states the right amount paid and the right person paid to.
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