If you are thinking of buying a property, it is worth checking its ownership status on the Web as a starting point.
NOTE: The system has changed since this article was written. For instructions on how to find ownership details on the Land Registry’s new computerized records, click here.
The Land Registry office for Hvar is in Stari Grad, on the ground floor of the local Court building on the waterfront. Address: Nova Riva 3, 21460 Stari Grad. Tel. 021 778 280, fax 021 778 282. Client receiving hours are from 08:00 to 13:00, Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, with a break (pauza) from 11:00 to 11:30.
If you are thinking of buying a property, it is worth checking its ownership status on the Web as a starting point. If you own a property, you are well advised to check the Land Registry records at intervals, to make sure no changes have been made which might affect your ownership rights. This section explains how to use the Land Registry internet database.
The Land Registry (Zemljišna Knjiga) holds the records of ownership. Whoever is registered as owner on the Land Registry is the legal owner of that property until such time as the Court orders a change, whether through sale, inheritance, deed of gift or re-possession. An Ownership Certificate (Vlasnički list) issued by the Land Registry is proof of ownership at the time of issue. Details of any mortgage, charge, right-of-way or right-of-use are entered on the Ownership Certificate, which also gives the case reference number(s) for any court case(s) relating to the property.
There are two ways of identifying a property on the records, the plot number or the Land Registry entry number. The plot number is in the form of čes.zgr. for a building, or čes.zem. in the case of land, followed in either case by a number. This number is the same on the Land Registry and the Cadastar. The alternative is to use the Land Registry reference number (Broj uloška, ZK Uložak, ZU for short) for the document including the property. Several properties may be listed on a single Land Registry ownership document, if they are owned by the same person or group of people.
Information taken from the internet is not legal proof of ownership rights, but still serves as a good guideline.
The Land Registry Home Page (Početna stranica) warns that the database is not complete, but includes: 1) information on properties which match the information on the Cadastar; 2) details which have been transferred in part or whole from the handwritten Land Registry ledgers; 3) listings showing the number of contracts and entries which have been digitalized.
To check on a property from the Home Page, go to the left side-bar. Under Pretraživanje (Search), click on ZK ulošci (Land Registry entries).
A window opens titled Dohvat z.k. uloška (Accessing Land Registry entries).
First line ZK Odjel (Land Registry office): use the arrows to scroll down to Stari Grad, the office where Hvar Island’s records are kept.
Second line Glavna knjiga (Main Book), use the arrows to scroll to the relevant town or village.
To access the Stari Grad listings directly, avoiding the above steps from the Home Page, click here, then choose the town or village from the red list in the first column of the box, under Naziv glavne knjige (Name of the Main Book).
You now have the choice between using the third line Broj zemljišta (kat.čestice) by inserting the plot number, or the fourth line, broj zk uloška, in which case you enter the ownership certificate reference number. If you use the plot number, enter ZGR after the actual number if there is a building registered on the land. If a red message appears under line three, it says that the plot you are looking for has not been found. Sometimes this is because ZGR has been wrongly inserted or omitted. A red message under line four means that that ZU number is not on the database, usually because the document number has been changed.
Line five is the control number (kontrolni broj), given in the box. When you have entered it, press Traži (Find). If you forget to enter the control number, a red message will appear under line five reminding you to do so. Note that if you move back to this page to check on another property, the control number may not change automatically. If you see a red message saying ‘Broj nije više važeći, ponovite unos kontrolnog broja’ enter the new number given in the box.
The green box underneath the lines where you insert your entries simply explains how to put in the plot numbers correctly.
If the property you are looking for is a building divided into flats (a process known as etažiranje), a box opens under the green instructions giving individual flat numbers, each listed as Etaža, with its dimensions expressed as a fraction of the whole building. You then need to click on the relevant red Etaža.
When the system identifies your property, a coloured document opens, headed Prikaz z.k.uloška – neslužbena kopija (Land Registry entry document – unofficial copy). To the left, under the Croatian crest, Land Registry Office name and date, is the Katarska općina (k.o. for short in official documents), meaning Cadastar local council, which names the town, village or area in which the plot is situated. Below that, Broj zadnjeg dnevnika (Number of last registration entry) states either Početno stanje, meaning Initial State, or it gives a reference number for any legal action which has been completed recently.
Aktivne plombe is the line giving the reference number(s) for any active case(s) involving the properties on the Ownership Certificate.
The Land Registry reference number (broj uloška) is given on the right opposite the k.o. place identification.
ZK uložak je (nije) verificiran means that the entry has (has not) been verified.
A Posjedovnica identifies the property, for instance as a house, garden, well or field, usually stating its overall dimensions.
B Vlastovnica names the registered owner(s) of the property.
C Teretovnica details any charges, actions or rights-of-way affecting the property.
To check on active cases affecting the property, click on the number beside ‘Aktivne plombe’. Under ZK Odjel Stari Grad, Stanje na dan means ‘Situation on the day’, followed by the current date. Podnesak shows the case number. The box underneath gives the essential details.
Line one: Primljeno: gives the date when the case papers were received by the Court.
Line two: Vrsta isprave: is the basis of the case for change on the Land Registry entry. For instance it might be Ugovor o kupoprodaji (Sales Contract), or Rješenje o Naslijeđivanju (Probate for Inheritance).
Line three: Oznaka spisa: gives the initial case number, if any.
Line four: Vrsta upisa: the type of change requested on the Land Registry. Most often this is Uknjižba meaning Registration of Ownership.
Line five: Sadržaj prijedloga: identifies the property or properties involved in the case and the action(s) requested.
Line six: Bilj.o kretanju spisa: notes on the movement of the papers. Some cases are sent away for ratification, and the date they are returned to the Stari Grad Court is entered here.
Line seven: Način rješenja: outcome. ‘U radu’ means the case is still in Court. Udovoljeno means the applicant has succeeded, while Odbijeno means the application has been turned down.
Line eight: Datum rješenja: the date on which the decision is given.
Line nine: Datum provedbe: the date the Court’s decision is confirmed.
Line ten: Datum otpreme: the date the decision is implemented.
Please note that if you want to apply for an ownership document in person from the Land Registry office, you need special tax stamps (taksene marke), which you can buy at post offices and selected kiosks, as cash is not accepted.
Written by Vivian Grisogono