Maintaining LINZ titles & parcels

We specialise in Māori land matters and our role is focused on providing owners of Māori land, their whānau and their hapū a forum which:

  • promotes the retention and utilisation of Māori land and
  • facilitates the occupation, development and utilisation of land.

Land Information New Zealand (LINZ) has a much broader responsibility of providing and maintaining the certainty of private property ownership information (Māori land is considered private property) by recording survey and land title information for all of New Zealand.

Our relationship with LINZ

We work closely with LINZ to ensure that information about Māori land is properly captured and maintained as part of the New Zealand property title and survey system.

Our work is undertaken at a number of levels:

Transaction level

Our land registry staff ensure that changes made by the Māori Land Court or Māori Appellate Court are transmitted to LINZ to registration against the LINZ title.

For example: You come to us to process a succession to your mother. Following your hearing a court order is issued confirming the transfer of the land to you and your brother in equal shares.

We will check the LINZ title records and, where necessary, we will lodge that order with LINZ to transfer the shares.

This is the same type of work that a lawyer would do when you purchase a house – taking care of the transfer of the LINZ title from the original owner to you as the purchaser.

We undertake this service on your behalf as part of our post Court work at no further cost to you.

Find out more about our registry services 

Find out more about LINZ and Māori land (external link)

Projects

We have worked (and continue to work) with LINZ on a range of projects which have long term benefit to Māori land owners.

Our past joint projects have included the:

  • Māori Freehold Land Registration (MFLR) Project (2005-2010) – a five year project to ensure orders affecting Māori land were correctly captured in the LINZ title together with survey records
  • Post-MFLR Options for maintaining integrity and consistency of the title registers project (2010-2012) – ongoing working group to continue to monitor the accuracy and integrity of Māori land titles and survey data
  • Future Opportunities for Efficiencies (FoFE) project (2012-2013) – Development of short, medium and long term opportunities for future work between both agencies
  • E-Lodgement Project (2013-2015) – Development and implementation of the electronic lodgement of court orders in Landonline

Regulatory work

Our Chief Judge works closely with the Registrar-General of Land, the Surveyor-General and the Valuer-General on the development of rules and regulations that affect Māori land.

This work has included:

Strategic work

We also provide input into larger pieces of work that LINZ undertake that may have an effect on Māori land.

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LINZ titles & surveys

LINZ is responsible for management of the current land transfer system (also known as the “Torrens” system) for New Zealand. Originally implemented in 1870, the system has been consolidated into what is now the Land Transfer Act 1952.

Use of this system is compulsory in New Zealand – this includes transactions that affect Māori land. Under our Act, where an order of the court affects your LINZ title, we will ensure that it is properly registered under the Land Transfer Act (at no cost to you).

The principles that underpin the current land registration system are:

  • Mirror principle – the register accurately and completely mirrors the state of the title.
  • Curtain principle – purchasers of land should be able to see trustee information or other interests lying behind the curtain of the register.
  • Insurance principle – this provides a state guarantee to the title and interests registered within and further provides for losses incurred as a result of errors in the register.

We work with LINZ to ensure that your interests are correctly recorded on titles maintained by LINZ.

By recording your interests in a LINZ title, your Māori land, as well having the protections of our Act, enjoys the same protection as any other private property under the Land Transfer Act.

Where a discrepancy exists between the title issued and maintained by LINZ and our records we will work with you to determine why this discrepancy exists and, if possible, correct it.

Find out more about LINZ (external link)

Contact us for more assistance 

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Māori land records held by LINZ

The value of our record is in the kōrero embodied in our minute books and other documents which record why a particular transaction has taken place. It provides the underlying story as to why something has occurred.

The result of the kōrero, embodied in the decisions made by the court or through the legal (and registerable) activity of owners, can be found in the LINZ records.

Many of our original orders creating Māori land were sent to LINZ to have titles issued as were subsequent partition orders, surveys, ownership changes, some leases and transfers.

LINZ also holds the following records:

  • Crown purchase deeds
  • Crown grants
  • Deeds and deed registers and indexes
  • Provisional registers
  • Property titles and plans
  • Survey records

Find out more about searching LINZ records (external link)

Find out more about our records 

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Māori land ‘flag’ in Landonline

The LINZ titles and survey system, Landonline, flags potential Māori land to ensure that lawyers or other authorised persons, comply with the requirements of our Act when registering a change against a Māori land title or parcel.

To ensure that unauthorised transactions don’t occur, LINZ have provisionally flagged titles or parcels of land which are linked to a current or former Māori land title.

A Māori land flag is indicative only, it does not stipulate that a particular title or parcel of land is Māori land, but it does require any person dealing with that title or parcel to investigate its correct status.

If you find your title or parcel has been flagged, and you believe this has been done in error, we can check our records to determine:

  • whether or not we have an entry for your title or parcel of land in our current records
  • if we have any records to confirm whether or not your land is general or Māori land
  • when your land ceased to have a Māori land status and why.

Where our records are clear that your land is no longer Māori land, we will supply you with written confirmation which you can supply to LINZ to have the flag removed.

However, if our records do not show any reason why it shouldn’t remain Māori land or are silent on any status change, you may need to apply to the Court for a determination of status to formerly confirm the land’s status.

Find out more about LINZ and Māori land (external link)

Contact us for more assistance 

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