At Askews Solicitors we provide expert property advice on a range of bespoke areas including Adverse Possession.

Adverse possession, commonly known as ‘squatters rights’, is a legal principle allowing someone to legally acquire a piece of land without purchasing it from the legal owners.

The legal process on how to make a claim depends on if the land is registered or unregistered. However, in both cases, the following principles must be established in order for an individual to be entitled to make a claim;

  • Limitation Period –
    • For unregistered land, an individual may be entitled to a claim for Adverse Possession if they have been maintaining or using the land for a continuous period of 12 years and over.
    • For registered title, an individual may be entitled to apply Adverse Possession if the land was possessed for a period of 10 years and over.
  • Factual Possession – the individual must have factual possession, meaning physical possession of the land.
  • Intention – the individual must have the intention to possess the land.
  • Possession Without the Owners Consent – the individual must occupy the land without permission from the legal owner. An application for adverse possession cannot be made where the individual is entitled to use the land, for example, by way of a licence.

Applications for Adverse Possession are submitted to the Land Registry who will consider all of the evidence submitted and assess each application on its merits on a case by case basis.

If you would like further information on Adverse Possession, or require assistance in relation to any property matter, please contact our Property Team on 01642 475252 who will be happy to assist.


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