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Cancellation of judgment mortgages at the Property Registration Authority (the ”PRA”)




The property team explores the steps involved in cancelling a judgment mortgage in circumstances where a discharge is not available.

Where a charge has been paid but the discharge was not obtained.

An affidavit in Form 57B can be lodged with the PRA exhibiting a receipt or evidence of payment and setting out the circumstances as to why the discharge cannot be obtained.

Statute barred judgment mortgages

The limitation period in relation to any judgment mortgage is 12 years from the date on which the judgment became enforceable (i.e. the date on which the judgment was obtained)[1]

A judgment mortgage obtained more than 12 years ago can be cancelled by lodging an affidavit setting out the relevant facts, including the following:

1. that the appropriate limitation period has expired 2. that no acknowledgement in writing has been given during that period and no part payment made. 3. that the owner of the judgment was not under such disability (of unsound mind or infancy) as would stop the statute running.

From the Bank’s perspective it is important to note the limitation period as the Bank would have expended time and money in obtaining the judgment mortgage in the first instance.

Every application is considered by the PRA on a case by case basis. Before the PRA can proceed with the cancellation of the burden, it must serve a notice of the cancellation on the judgment mortgagee (the judgment holder). If no objection is received the burden may be cancelled.

This procedure provides a practical solution to the Banks to deal with aged judgment mortgages which may pre-date Bank’s charge which remain registered on title. It is also as important for the Bank to be aware of this process and the time lines which can affect judgments obtained by the Bank.

Please note that this article is for information purposes only and does not constitute legal advice. Specific advice should always be taken in given situations.

Should you have any query in relation to this article or a related legal issue, please contact a member of our Property Team at 01 828 0600. 

[1] Section 47(c)(3) of the Statute of Limitations 1957.