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Mon 22 Oct 2018

International Update - Hong Kong: Property Fraud

International Update - Hong Kong: Property Fraud

This month, our International Partner and Head of Insolvency and Restructuring, Niten Chauhan shall be in Hong Kong for a series of meetings as well as the Annual General Meeting of the IAPL (International Association of Practising Lawyers) which is to be attended by 30 members from law firms across the world.

As Vice President of the IAPL, Niten recognises the importance of fostering stronger relationships between associates of member firms as well as sharing knowledge of trends and developments in the law within our respective jurisdictions.

In particular, following the rise of Property Fraud in Hong Kong, Niten has been invited to speak before Members of the Hong Kong Conveyancing and Property Law Association and the Property Committee of the Hong Kong Law Society about his success in the Court of Appeal earlier this year following the groundbreaking decision in P&P Property Limited v Owen White & Catlin LLP [2016] EWCA Civ. 1082.

In recent years, an increase in counterfeit identification cards and other false documentation has enabled fraudsters in Hong Kong to sell properties of which they are not the genuine owners but also apply for mortgages and loans secured against them too which are only discovered when the true individual receives a letter of demand for repayment.

Niten commented “Property fraud is ever evolving but the decision in P&P Property gives hope to innocent victims that they can find legal redress. By sharing knowledge with lawyers in a different jurisdiction this will enable them to gain an invaluable insight in to how they may help their clients in such an eventuality but more importantly protect them from such fraudulent transactions at the outset”

However, it is not just those purchasing homes in Hong Kong who have fallen victim to property fraud; some investors from the Far East who have acquired flats in the UK have also been left substantially out of pocket and, in turn, this has put the UK’s reputation as a leading jurisdiction for property investment at risk too.

As a result, Niten shall also be meeting with contacts both at leading banks and real estate agencies in Hong Kong to discuss some of the key indicators of property fraud and what preventative measures can be employed by them to protect their clients. Equally, this shall be a good opportunity for them to speak with him about how he may be able to assist an individual or a company which has already fallen victim to a property fraud in the UK and are uncertain of where to turn to for help.

For more information or should you require any assistance please do not hesitate to contact Niten Chauhan by email at nchauhan@jpclaw.co.uk or by telephone on 020 7644 723

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