On May 2, 2009 simplified procedures for the registration of land ownership and land transfers went into effect in Ukraine. Previously, a state act was required to demonstrate title to a parcel of land. This meant that a notarized land purchase agreement was not sufficient evidence of ownership of title to land and any new purchaser of land had to obtain a duly registered state act with the state department of land resources.

The bureaucratic procedures for issuing state acts caused additional expenses and time for new landowners. With the adoption of the simplified procedures, described below, state acts will no longer be required.

Changes to the Laws of Ukraine

The simplified procedures are the result of the law “On Amendments to the Laws Certifying Ownership Rights to a Land Plot and to the Procedure of Division and Joining of Land Plots” No. 1066-VI dated 5 March 2009 (the amendments). The law amends (i) the Land Code of Ukraine, (ii) the law “On Land Tenure (zemleustriy)” and (iii) the law “On State Registration of Property Rights on Real Estate Objects and Their Encumbrances.”

New List of Documents That Certify Ownership Rights to a Land Plot

The following documents will now certify ownership rights to a parcel of land:

State act; or Civil-law title transfer agreement, duly notarized, or certificate of inheritance – provided that the land plot was previously privately owned and no borders or zoning was changed.

Leases

A right to lease a land plot, as it was in the past, is certified by a notarized land lease agreement that must be registered with the state department of land resources.

Land Plot Transfer of Title Procedure

In case of a transfer of title, a state act on a parcel of land that is being transferred should be attached to the civil-law title transfer agreement or certificate of inheritance.

The state act should contain notes of a notary and the state department of land resources (which registers ownership rights and restrictions on real property) about the title transfer of the parcel of land and identify the agreement or certificate on the basis of which the title transfer took place.

The state department of land resources must register the ownership rights within 14 calendar days from the date of submission of the document to the relevant state department.

In the event of a change of the co-owner or acquisition of the right of joint ownership to a parcel of land, the state department of land resources should make changes to the state act.

Transferring part of a parcel of land and separating it into a new parcel of land are possible only after the owner obtains a state act on the newly formed parcel of land.

Certification by Notary and State Registration of Ownership Rights to a Land Plot

Sales of land ownership rights must be certified by a notary and registered with the state department of land resources.

Ownership rights to a parcel of land and the right to use and rent a parcel of land are acquired only after the state registration of these rights.

Effect on Previous Agreements

This law also applies to cases for which a civil-law title transfer agreement or certificate of inheritance was obtained before the enactment of this law, but state acts were not issued.