Property Registration In Israel (Or Am I Registered As The Owner Of My Apartment?)

People from all over the world own apartments or houses in Israel but since they do not speak Hebrew and cannot understand the transaction documentation, they may have no idea if they have been registered as the owners of the property.

Property registration in Israel is a convoluted process and many properties are not registered in the names of their owners at the Land Registry, or are not registered at the Land Registry at all.

Real Estate in Israel is registered using a block and parcel number and not by owner or by address. The block (Gush in Hebrew) signifies the local area of the property and the parcel number (Helka) is the specific plot. If the property is an apartment in a building or complex, then each apartment will have a sub-parcel (Tat Helka) number, which may not be the same as the apartment number.

However, not all property in Israel is registered at the Land Registry.

Over 90% of the land in Israel is owned by the state or by national institutions and much of this is managed by the Israel Lands Authority (ILA). These areas are gradually being registered at the Land Registry but if the plot has not yet been registered, then details of ownership will be found either at the ILA (a registry which is not open to the public) or in the records of the company developing the land on its behalf. In such cases, there may be no evidence at all of the ultimate beneficial ownership of that property at the Land Registry.

Even when the land is privately owned and is registered at the Land Registry, it can take...

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