A new ruling by the European Court of Justice in Luxembourg might put a lot of expat property owners in Northern Cyprus into financial hardship as they might be forced to pay thousands of pounds in damages to the original land owners, the Greek Cypriots.
It turns out that many British bought their Cyprian properties from illegal owners, namely the Turkish Cypriots who took ownership of land in the country when they invaded Cyprus in 1974, forcing many Cypriots to flee their home country.
If this ruling is in fact enforced by the law, many expats and overseas investors will be made to pay, even if they have done nothing wrong in their own eyes.
Meanwhile British Foreign Secretary David Miliband and Chancellor Alistair Darling are battling to have this title deed issues solved ASAP. Miliband stated in a letter to Darling:
“I understand the concern about the practice in Cyprus of title deeds not being supplied on completion of a property purchase. The practice of property developer’s not supplying title deeds to purchasers has the potential to affect a large number of British citizens as well as other foreign nationals living in Cyprus.”
Miliband was also informed that British High Commissioner Peter Millett received assurances from the Cypriot Interior Ministry that a bill addressing the issue would soon be ready.
Photo credits: Steve Harris via Flickr