Torrens title

Torrens title is a land registration and land transfer system, in which a state creates and maintains a register of land holdings, which serves as the conclusive evidence (termed "indefeasibility") of title of the person recorded on the register as the proprietor (owner), and of all other interests recorded on the register.

Ownership of land is transferred by registration of a transfer of title, instead of by the use of deeds. The Registrar provides a Certificate of Title to the new proprietor, which is merely a copy of the related folio of the register. The main benefit of the system is to enhance certainty of title to land and to simplify dealings involving land.

Its name derives from Sir Robert Richard Torrens (1814–1884), who designed, lobbied for and introduced the private member's bill which was enacted as the Real Property Act 1858 in the Province of South Australia, the first version of Torrens title enacted in the world. Torrens based his proposal on many of the ideas of Ulrich Hübbe, a German lawyer living in South Australia. The system has been adopted by many countries and has been adapted to cover other interests, including credit interests (such as mortgages), leaseholds and strata titles.

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