Simplification of the due diligence examination in the context of real estate acquisitions.
As of October 1, 2018, an amendment to the Cadastre Act (Act No. 162/1995) will amend the rules on inspecting the land register.
The Cadastre (Land Register) in Slovakia is an information system where important data on real estate is kept. Entry in the land register is an indispensable condition for any disposal of real estate (immovable property). In the land register, all legal relationships to real estate (e.g. easements, liens) and all relevant contracts and other documents are entered. The land register is thus also a source of information which is necessary for any purchase, sale or other disposal of the property.
In principle, everyone has the right to inspect the land register both with regard to their own real estate and that of others. However, several exceptions exist to this rule, which was recently amended.
Anyone can request extracts from the deeds of title, cadastral plans and similar information about their own real estate as well as that of others. This data is also available on the Internet (www.katasterportal.sk, https://zbgis.skgeodesy.sk). However, information on the value of real estate, which from 1 October 2018 must also be entered in the land register, and the birth number is only accessible to certain persons (e.g. public prosecutors, courts, etc.).
Access to documents kept in the deed collection of the land register (mostly contracts) is only granted to owners and other specific persons. Access to documents on third-party real estate is still not possible.
A thorough examination of documents on acquisition titles from the past is a necessity for every major transaction. Many authorities have so far refused to deliver to the current owners any documents from the past that were drawn up by their legal predecessors. For example, owners only had access to contracts to which they were a party. They often could not get the contracts of their predecessors, which made investigation impossible. This state of affairs was impractical because it was not possible to carry out a legal analysis (due diligence) of older acquisition titles. The amendment to the law abolishesd this situation, so that the owner has access to all documents concerning their real estate. In this way, it is possible to obtain an overview of past dispositions of properties, prices, encumbrances, etc.