3 Types Of Land Title Damages And How To Get A New One

PropertyGuru Editorial Team
3 Types Of Land Title Damages And How To Get A New One
When it comes to purchasing property, there’s bound to be tons of paperwork and legal documents to sign, handle, and receive.
There’s your Sales & Purchase Agreement, the Memorandum of Transfer (MOT), a Land Title/Title Deed, and well… a whole LOT more!
Aside from filing and organising them correctly, it’s always best to keep additional copies in case of emergencies or damages that might occur. However, what if something terrible happens before you can do that?
In this article, we’ll look at the 3 types of damages that could occur to your Land Title, and how to go about applying for a new one.
The Land Title is a very important document to own, as it officiates your property ownership, so pay close attention!

First Off, What Is A Land Title?

Otherwise known in Malaysia as ‘geran’ or ‘geran title’, a Land Title is issued to an individual to acknowledge the legal ownership they hold over the land.
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For example, if you’re buying a plot of land in Sepang, you’ll be issued with a Land Title to confirm you own that piece, and nobody else!
Once you receive the Land Title, it gives you the freedom to do anything and everything you want with the land, even transfer or sell it.
However, with great power comes great responsibility, so you need to take care of your Land Title and protect it at all costs! Which brings us to…

The 3 Types Of Land Title Damages

In the land of sunshine and tropical storms, erratic weather can cause property destruction such as flooding and fires. Precious documents – including your Land Title – could easily get damaged in the process.
Not just the weather, but your geran title could be damaged by pests, stolen, or be considered ‘spoiled’ although it’s in excellent shape (we’ll get to that in a moment!).
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1) Missing Land Title

According to the Selangor Land and Mines Office, a Land Title is considered missing if it has disappeared from the owner or relevant party’s possession, whether by theft or misplacement.
Common scenarios
  1. Stolen during a home burglary.
  2. Misplaced and can’t be found.
  3. Fell off the back of your moving van when you were moving houses.
Processing time for a new one
  1. Qualified Title: 3 months.
  2. Final Title: 6 months.

2) Destroyed Land Title

A destroyed Land Title bears some similarities to a missing Land Title, but this time, the second copy kept at the Land Office has also gone missing, and there’s no further information!
Compared to a missing and spoiled geran title, a destroyed one will take longer to process as it needs to undergo a thorough investigation.
It’ll also ‘perlu melalui warta’ twice, which basically means that an official notice will be put out to allow anyone who wishes to make an objection to come forward. Any objections to the land will also need to be scrutinised.
Common scenarios
Owner loses the Land Title and the Land Office has lost the copy.
Processing time for a new one
9 months.

3) ‘Spoiled’ Land Title

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What is considered a ‘spoiled’ land geran? Is it one that’s given too many toys and sweet treats? We wish it was, but nope!
A spoiled Land Title is one that’s considered ruined (rosak) due to damages caused by natural phenomena, old age, or if it has been LAMINATED. Yes, even the act of laminating this document could render it void!
The heating process that occurs during lamination could spoil any important holograms, security stamps, seals, or ink on the document itself.
When photocopying, the reflective plastic of the lamination might create distorted lines, additional shadows, noise, or colour on your geran title, making it difficult to process and read.
In addition to all that, if your Land Title needs any editing, lamination will make it harder to do so as you can’t write on it.
In the end, you’ll have to go back to the Land Office to request for a new one, so take our advice and keep it in a pocket file instead!
Common scenarios
  1. Contents were destroyed in a flood/house fire.
  2. Land Title has yellowed and the ink has faded due to old age.
  3. Laminating and exposing it to heat.
Processing time for a new one
2 weeks.

How To Apply For A New Land Title To Be Issued

First off, you’ll need to file for a police report as soon as you notice your Land Title has gone missing.
The report must be a certified true copy and must include all relevant details of the property like the postal address, owner’s name, owner’s identification card number, etc.
The next thing you’ll need is a Statutory Declaration for your missing title and the lawyer representing you, who, by the way, will be assisting you in these matters!
These Statutory Declarations will then need to be affirmed by a Commissioner of Oaths and stamped at the Inland Revenue Board Of Malaysia (LHDN).
Once that’s done, you’ll need to conduct an official land search of your missing Land Title at the Land Office, assisted by your lawyer too.
Finally, with the official results of the land search, attach it with the required documents (listed below) and present it to the Land Office.
Note: All stamped documents will cost RM10 each.

1) Individual application

  • A copy of the original police report, reporting that the Land Title is missing (must be certified by the relevant police station and contains the full number ID of the Land Title).
  • A copy of the complainant’s identification card.
  • A stamped Statutory Declaration of each of the owners/stakeholders.
  • A copy of each of the owners/stakeholders’ identification cards.
  • Official land search certificate (valid for two weeks only).
  • A stamped copy of the owner’s death certificate/official will and Statutory Declaration of Heirship if the owners/stakeholders have passed away.
  • A copy of the latest Quit Rent and Assessment Rate receipts and proof of payment.
  • A stamped Statutory Declaration of relevant/registered parties of the Land Title and a copy of their identification cards.
  • A Letter of Appointment from the owner to their representative, a stamped Statutory Declaration, and a copy of their identification card.
  • If applying with the help of a lawyer, a copy of the lawyer’s identification card and Statutory Declaration is needed.
  • Application process charges of RM430 for Qualified Title or RM440 for Final Title.
  • The document submitter will need to present their identification card during the application for biometrics purposes.

2) Private company/via a legal firm

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  • A company’s official letterhead must be used. If applying with the help of a lawyer, the application must use the firm’s official letterhead.
  • A copy of the director’s identification card and their stamped Statutory Declaration.
  • A copy of Form 49, 44, and 24, plus the Company’s Resolution and M&A as confirmed by the Company Secretary.
  • If applying with the help of a lawyer, a copy of the lawyer’s identification card and Statutory Declaration is needed.
  • Other documents are the same as an individual applicant’s.

3) Government/statutory bodies (non-profit)

  • An official government/statutory body letterhead must be used.
  • A copy of the official police report (must be certified by the relevant police station).
  • A copy of the government servant (complainant)’s identification card.
  • A stamped Statutory Declaration of the government servant (complainant).
  • A Statutory Declaration of the submitter (representative of the department/statutory body) and a copy of their identification card.
  • The identification card will need to be presented during the application for biometrics purposes.
  • No charges will be applied for applications from government/statutory bodies.
Before you go about getting your documents together, make sure of these final and very important things:
  • All Statutory Declarations must be in Bahasa Malaysia and stamped.
  • All police reports must be certified by the relevant police stations.
  • If there are any ground plans, attach those as well.
  • Payments for applications must be made via cash or bank draft under the name ‘Bendahari Negeri Selangor’.

What If I’m Not The Property Owner? Can I Still Apply?

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If you don’t own the property but someone close to you does, like a partner or parent, you can still help them with the application. All you have to do is provide these extra documents:
  • A stamped copy of the affirmed Letter of Authorisation by the property owner, permitting you to carry out the application.
  • A stamped copy of the affirmed representative Statutory Declaration.
  • Your identification card for biometrics purposes during the submission of the documents.

Tips On Taking Care Of Your Land Title

We get that you like to be neat and organised, but laminating your Land Title is NOT the way to go! Here are some ways to keep your Land Title in good condition and for a long time:
  • Keep it in a plastic sleeve away from excessive heat or moisture.
  • Create backup files in your hard drive or online storage system.
  • Store it in a safe deposit box in the bank.
  • Safeguard it in a home safe that’s waterproof, fireproof, and theft-proof.
  • Entrust a copy to your lawyer.
  • Make copies and place them in an emergency grab-and-go bag.
Before you set your heart and wallet on purchasing a property, make sure that the dream home you’re about to purchase bears the correct land and property titles.
For multi-storey developments, this means a Strata Title; for landed properties, it’s typically an Individual Title.
If the home you’re buying doesn’t have a title, beware as you could get caught in a sticky situation. Without an official property title under your name, the ownership process is not complete, and that means the property still belongs to the former owner/developer.
Hence, since that means you don’t ‘legally’ own the property, you won’t be able to sell, transfer, or put it up as collateral. Talk about trouble!
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