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Protecting your protection: avoiding automatically lapsing caveats in Victoria

The caveat is a vital tool in protecting a trade creditor’s position in relation to debtors guarantors where an interest in land is obtained. Its value can however, be swiftly and irretrievably lost by a failure to act within the rigid timelines set out in the Transfer of Land Act 1958 ( Vic) (the Act) after a “lapsing” notice is issued by the Registrar of Titles. Action mustbe taken by the date stated in the lapsing notice, (which cannot be less than 30 days after the lapsing notice is posted) to substantiate the caveator’s claim and stay registration of any competing dealings. If this doesn’t occur and the caveat lapses or is postponed to a competing dealing, the caveator cannot simply seek to renew it.

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