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Registering Property in

Lao PDR

Below is a detailed summary of the steps, time and cost involved in registering property in Lao PDR. It assumes a standardized case of an entrepreneur who wants to purchase land and a building that is already registered and free of title dispute.

This information was collected as part of the Doing Business project, which measures and compares regulations relevant to the life cycle of a small- to medium-sized domestic business in 190 economies. The most recent round of data collection was completed in June 2016.

Compare Lao PDR to 189 other economies.

  • Measure of efficiency
    No. Procedure Time to Complete Associated Costs
    1

    Obtain the Land Title Accuracy Certificate ("Certificate")

    Agency: District Natural Resources and Environment Office

    The seller or buyer or their appointees submit the application form to the District Natural Resources and Environment Office for verification of correctness of the land title which is signed by the village chief where the land is located. After receiving the application form, the Vientiane Department of Natural Resources and Environment will verify the correctness of the land title compared with the Land Registry Book, Land Map and other related documents. If it is correct, the Vientiane Department of Natural Resources and Environment will issue the Certificate of Correctness of the land title. The application forms for verification of correctness of the land title are submitted at the same time as the application for registration of the sale and purchase agreement and transfer of the property to the District Natural Resources and Envrionemt Office.

    2-5 days LAK 5,000 for application + LAK 50,000 for issuance of the title
    2

    Complete the LMA sale-purchase agreement form

    Agency: District Natural Resources and Environment Office

    The authorized representatives of the seller-company and buyer-company must execute a sale and purchase agreement in a form provided by the District Natural Resources and Environment Office, which is signed by three witnesses and by the village chief where the land is located.

    1-2 days LAK 15,000 - LAK 20,000
    3

    Notarize of sale-purchase agreement

    Agency: Notary's Office

    The Instruction No. 435/MoJ, dated November 11, 2011 on the Implementation of the Notary Law requires for the parties (or their duly authorized representatives) to be present at the Notary Office in order to have the sale-purchase agreement notarized. They submit the Certificate of Correctness of Land Title to Notary Office along with the original sale-purchase agreement. The signed sale and purchase agreement is certified by the Notary Office to attest that land use rights have been appropriately transferred according to the agreement.

    2-3 days LAK 20,000 + LAK 5,000 per page
    4

    Registration of the sale-purchase agreement and issuance of the new Land Title

    Agency: District Natural Resources and Environment Office

    The notarized sale and purchase agreement is submitted to the District Natural Resources and Environment Office which will be registered at the Vientiane Department of Natural Resources and Environment. The Vientiane Department of Natural Resources and Environment will thereafter issue a new land title in the name of the Buyer and send to the District Natural Resources and Environment Office.

    30-60 days LAK 135,000 (paid at the time of submission) + LAK 50,000 (land registration form) + LAK 30,000 Stamp Duty + 1% property value (Registration Fee)

  • Measure of quality
    Answer Score
    Quality of the land administration index (0-30) 9.5
    Reliability of infrastructure index (0-8) 1.0
    What is the institution in charge of immovable property registration? Department of Natural Resources and Environment – at the provincial level
    In what format are the majority of title or deed records kept in the largest business city—in a paper format or in a computerized format (scanned or fully digital)? Paper 0.0
    Is there an electronic database for checking for encumbrances (liens, mortgages, restrictions and the like)? No 0.0
    In what format are the majority of maps of land plots kept in the largest business city—in a paper format or in a computerized format (scanned or fully digital)? Paper 0.0
    Is there an electronic database for recording boundaries, checking plans and providing cadastral information (geographic information system)? No 0.0
    Is the information recorded by the immovable property registration agency and the cadastral or mapping agency kept in a single database, in different but linked databases or in separate databases? Separate databases 0.0
    Do the immovable property registration agency and cadastral or mapping agency use the same identification number for properties? Yes 1.0
    Transparency of information index (0–6) 0.5
    Who is able to obtain information on land ownership at the agency in charge of immovable property registration in the largest business city? Only intermediaries and interested parties 0.0
    Is the list of documents that are required to complete any type of property transaction made publicly available–and if so, how? Yes, in person 0.0
    Link for online access:
    Is the applicable fee schedule for any property transaction at the agency in charge of immovable property registration in the largest business city made publicly available–and if so, how? Yes, on public boards 0.5
    Link for online access:
    Does the agency in charge of immovable property registration commit to delivering a legally binding document that proves property ownership within a specific time frame–and if so, how does it communicate the service standard? Yes, in person 0.0
    Link for online access:
    Is there a specific and separate mechanism for filing complaints about a problem that occurred at the agency in charge of immovable property registration? No 0.0
    Are there publicly available official statistics tracking the number of transactions at the immovable property registration agency? No 0.0
    Number of property transfers in the largest business city in 2015:
    Who is able to consult maps of land plots in the largest business city? Only intermediaries and interested parties 0.0
    Is the applicable fee schedule for accessing maps of land plots made publicly available—and if so, how? Yes, in person 0.0
    Link for online access:
    Does the cadastral or mapping agency commit to delivering an updated map within a specific time frame—and if so, how does it communicate the service standard? No 0.0
    Link for online access:
    Is there a specific and separate mechanism for filing complaints about a problem that occurred at the cadastral or mapping agency? No 0.0
    Geographic coverage index (0–8) 4.0
    Are all privately held land plots in the economy formally registered at the immovable property registry? No 0.0
    Are all privately held land plots in the largest business city formally registered at the immovable property registry? Yes 2.0
    Are all privately held land plots in the economy mapped? No 0.0
    Are all privately held land plots in the largest business city mapped? Yes 2.0
    Land dispute resolution index (0–8) 4.0
    Does the law require that all property sale transactions be registered at the immovable property registry to make them opposable to third parties? Yes 1.5
    Is the system of immovable property registration subject to a state or private guarantee? Yes 0.5
    Is there a specific compensation mechanism to cover for losses incurred by parties who engaged in good faith in a property transaction based on erroneous information certified by the immovable property registry? No 0.0
    Does the legal system require a control of legality of the documents necessary for a property transaction (e.g., checking the compliance of contracts with requirements of the law)? Yes 0.5
    If yes, who is responsible for checking the legality of the documents? Registrar.
    Does the legal system require verification of the identity of the parties to a property transaction? Yes 0.5
    If yes, who is responsible for verifying the identity of the parties? Registrar.
    Is there a national database to verify the accuracy of identity documents? No 0.0
    For a standard land dispute between two local businesses over tenure rights of a property worth 50 times gross national income (GNI) per capita and located in the largest business city, what court would be in charge of the case in the first instance? People's Court Vientiane Capital
    How long does it take on average to obtain a decision from the first-instance court for such a case (without appeal)? Between 2 and 3 years 1.0
    Are there any statistics on the number of land disputes in the first instance? No 0.0
    Number of land disputes in the largest business city in 2015:
    Equal access to property rights index (-2–0) 0.0
    Do unmarried men and unmarried women have equal ownership rights to property? Yes 0.0
    Do married men and married women have equal ownership rights to property? Yes 0.0