Limitation of disposal is a provisional measure that includes placing a precautionary seizure on someone’s real estate to guarantee any financial rights owed to the state. This measure comes at the request of a public entity, usually the relevant governorate’s finance directorate or the local city council.
The name of the person whose property has been seized via this method is recorded in a special registry called the Limitation of Disposal Registry, one of the records kept by the Limitation of Disposal Section of the General Directorate of Cadastral Affairs’ Land Registry Department. The Limitation of Disposal lists the names of those barred from disposing or transferring ownership of their properties. Administrative decisions from the Ministry of Local Administration and the General Directorate of Cadastral Affairs regulate the work of the Limitation of Disposal Section.
Decree No. 189 of 1926, which includes executive rules for the Land Registry Law, stipulates that property disposal rights should be listed within the second section of a property’s Land Record. This measure was never implemented. Instead, this information is recorded within the Limitation of Disposal Registry.
Initially, the reason for limiting someone’s right to dispose of their property had to do solely with finances, such as unpaid taxes or fees due to the state or failure to pay off loans to a bank. Monitoring and repressive measures by the security services, such as when a property owner is wanted by security forces, were added after 2011. A Sharia judge, i.e., a judge who rules per the personal status law and the Islamic law, may also order limitation of disposal to seize the property of someone who is mentally unwell. In such cases, the court appoints someone to manage that individual’s assets.
The concerned public entity sends a letter to the Directorate of Cadastral Affairs to implement a limitation order. This letter includes the name of the person listed on the Limitation of Disposal Registry and a note to place a precautionary seizure on their real estate. In turn, the Directorate of Cadastral Affairs sends the letter to the Limitation of Disposal Section requesting it to enter that person’s name in its registry.
Once someone’s name enters the Limitation of Disposal Registry, they are barred from recording real estate transactions in the Land Registry. For example, when carrying out a transfer of real estate ownership, the head of any real estate documentation office sends a letter to the Limitation of Disposal Section to check whether that person’s name is listed in the Limitation of Disposal Registry. If yes, the recording of the transfer stops until their name is removed from it.
When the reason for someone’s entry in the Limitation of Disposal Registry is null, then the concerned public entity sends a letter to the Land Registry notifying them that there is no objection to writing off the name of the person from the Limitation of Disposal Registry.
Limitation of disposal does not prevent sales of real estate via court rulings, but it does prevent such rulings from being recorded in the Land Registry. In other words, the court may issue a ruling allowing the transfer and register ownership even if the property owner’s name is listed in the Limitation of Disposal Registry. But to enter these actions into the Land Registry, the property owner’s name must first be removed from the Limitation of Disposal Registry. This is because a court ruling allowing a property sale does not require a clearance for that property in the relevant governorate’s finance directorate. However, a clearance must be obtained to implement this ruling, thereby removing the property from the Limitation of Disposal Registry.
In reality, there is nothing to prevent the court from issuing a ruling to transfer ownership or implementing a seizure on properties belonging to someone already listed in the Limitation of Disposal Registry. The limitation on disposal is lifted as soon as the property receives its acquittal, according to Jurisprudence No. 10 Basis 81 from May 1993. This is in contrast to the mark for restraint on disposal, which prevents any legal disposal of a property.