What does the German land register offer?
The German land register provides information on civil law legal relationships concerning real estate, such as ownership data and third party rights in rem (rights over the thing itself rather than rights against a specific person). The land register is maintained primarily in electronic format.
The land register may be accessed only by persons who can show a legitimate interest in consulting it (e.g. particularly for legal or economic reasons). To do so, they must first contact the land registry office in the district in which the property is located. Those persons may also apply for excerpts from the land register.
Furthermore, a restricted group of users may consult the land register data via an electronic portal for the particular federal state. These users include German courts, public authorities, notaries, credit institutions and utility companies. The judicial authorities of the federal states are responsible for regulating these access rights.
Is access to the German land register free of charge?
Consulting the German land register at the land registry office is free of charge. A simple excerpt from the register costs EUR 10, a certified copy EUR 20. There is also a charge for accessing or consulting the land register electronically.
How to search the German land register
In the German land register you can search by the following search criteria:
- Land register folio number
- Cadastral unit
- Name of the owner
History of the German land register
Using the land register, you can usually trace the ownership history of real estate back to the start of the 20th century.
From the mid-1990s onwards, the paper version of the German land register has been gradually replaced by an electronic version. This migration is now largely complete.
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