All general law records, which date from 1827, are held in the Registry of Deeds in the Lands Building, 134 Macquarie Street, Hobart. The books of general law land grants, dating from the early 1800s, are now held at the Archives Office
General Law Grant Book/page numbers need to be obtained from the Grants Index Book in the Registry prior to ordering general law grants from either the Land Titles Office or from the Archives Office.
The relevant memorial or plan reference is required for Land Titles Office staff to provide copies of single memorials, plans, field notes (if available) and other records in the Registry of Deeds together with the appropriate fees.
Who can search in the Registry and what does it involve?
Anyone who pays the prescribed search and copy fees can search the Registry. Searching the Registry can involve searching indexes and interpreting records. This type of searching can require considerable time and experience on the part of the searcher.
Staff in the Land Titles Office are not permitted to assist in searching records, other than to point out the layout of records in the room. If assistance in searching records is required, the services of a solicitor or search agent is recommended.
Where do I start?
You should first check at the Land Titles Office to confirm which land system is involved (ie whether the parcel is held under Torrens title or General Law deed).
How do I obtain a copy of a General Law deed?
If you have the deed reference, you may obtain a copy at the Land Titles Office. You will need to provide the book/page number and the prescribed fee, payable to the Recorder of Titles.
If you do not have a deed reference, a search in the Registry of Deeds may be required.
What information is required to search in the Registry?
Ideally you should know the registered number(s) of the deed(s) to begin a search at General Law.
NOTE: Memorials (copies of deeds) are filed in book/page number (eg 13/4500). Your solicitor, estate agent or vendor should be able to provide you with this number.
If you do not know the registered number(s) of the deed(s), you will need to know:
What if I only know the address?
- the owner's full name, and
- a previous owner's full name and timeframe of ownership, and
- the location of the land.
A search of cadastral (plan and map) records may provide sufficient detail to commence your search. An additional search fee may be required to search the cadastre.
To search the cadastre:
- you could enquire at the Office public counter on Level 1, 134 Macquarie Street, Hobart
- locate the parcel of land on a map or chart, or
- search adjoining survey information.
You may search in the Registry by year of purchase and surname/s of the parties involved.
All deeds in the Registry are entered in the indexes, in alphabetical order of the surnames of the parties involved. Indices are divided into time zones being: 1827-1926, 1926-1942, 1942-1953, 1953-1957, 1958-1967, 1968-1972. Indices from 1972 to date are held as a computer database which may be viewed "REGISTRY OF DEEDS" on computer screens at the public counter or in the Registry.
By using the owner's surname and period of ownership, select the appropriate years' index book. On finding the owner's name, copy down all relevant entries.
Where is the Registry and what are the requirements for searching?
Access to the Registry is by key issue from the Land Titles Office, Level 1, Lands Building, 134 Macquarie Street, Hobart . You will be required to pay the required fee prior to key issue. The key is to be returned to the Land Titles Office each day.
Searchers are requested to take all due care in handling the books to ensure their own personal safety and preservation of the records. The Registry records may prove heavy to lift and awkward to photocopy, therefore you may want to bring someone with you to assist with searching.
You will be required to provide ID prior to key allocation.
No food, drinks or bags are permitted in the Registry.
Weekdays 9am - 4.30pm.
Searching the Registry can involve considerable time, therefore please ensure you allocate sufficient time to complete your search and return the key prior to office closure.
What is the present search fee?
A search fee is payable to access the Deeds Office.
A copy fee is payable per document if no search fee has been paid.