Cyprus Legislation | Purchasing Property
An Exchange Agreement of Property Without Title Deeds in Cyprus
The terms of a contract regarding an exchange of immovable property, where no exact time of transfer has been specified due to the Title Deeds awaiting transferal.
“An incomplete contract?” you may gasp, however this has become standard practice in Cyprus, where many property owners on the island are still waiting for title deeds to be issued from property developers or previous land owners.
In such an instance where no date is specified on contract, it does not automatically nullify the agreement, rather the parties have to give a reasonable provisional time taking into consideration the reasons for the respondents delay.
The option to terminate the agreement can be used as a remedy only after the contract of exchange or otherwise has been breached and the appellant notified of said breach. Cyprus law goes on to state that the communication of the contract breach should be out in writing leaving no uncertainties which a normal person would reasonably comprehend.
Once the appellant has fulfilled what was expected of him within his power; if innocent, can respond that he is awaiting the counter party to fulfill his own obligation, but he does not respond unreasonably, the innocent party has the right to terminate the exchange agreement and be released thereof.
For the termination to be classified as just and valid, violation of Contract Law is sufficient if the appellant can prove the time-frame to be unreasonable, which provides the following:
“Unless the contract specifically states otherwise, a Promisor has an obligation to perform his promise without having to be pressed by the Promisee; additionally, if no time for performance is specified, then the actions must be performed within a reasonable time.”
The matter of what constitutes reasonable time is, in each particular case, a subjective question for each case brought before the Cyprus courts. As long as the delaying party informs the other party that the delay is due to procedures out of their control for the issuance of the title deed and all the necessary steps have been taken at the Cyprus Land Registry, resolution cannot be determined without reviewing the facts of each case.
The simple lapse of allocated time given via a notice to the other party who has been delayed, to appear before the Land Registry for the exchange of the properties, does not automatically give rise to the right of the counter party to terminate the agreement.
The Cyprus Supreme Court recently issued a ruling on a case in Nicosia, and nullified a termination order allowing the original contract terms to take precedent. So, don’t be like the claimant in this case and pay costly court fees to fail to obtain important documents such as title deeds. Ensure that you have given appropriate time-frames and clear instructions to anyone first, before starting legal proceedings in Cyprus.
For more information on applying for a termination of an application order in Cyprus, contact us.