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16 Feb 10

The Implications Of The Landmark Orams Decision Are Spelt Out By Cyprus Property Lawyer

cyprus legal advice

Louise Zambarta a well respected property lawyer specialising in cyprus property law, gives her considered opinion on the outcome of the recent high court case between the Orams and Meletios Apostolides the Greek Cypriot owner of the land that they built their villa on in Northern Cyprus: .

A landmark decision of the Court of Appeal in Britain has confirmed the risks of buying property in the North. The decision in the so-called Orams Case made last month has confirmed that a Nicosia court decision of 2004 does have effect in Northern Cyprus and the Orams, a British couple who built a villa on property originally owned by Greek Cypriot Meletios Apostolides, have been ordered by the British Court of Appeal to demolish the villa, return the land and to pay Mr Apostolides back rent for their period of occupation. They are also ordered to pay Mr Apostolides legal costs .

Whether further legal action will need to be taken to enforce the judgment remains to be seen, but the decision is nonetheless a significant one, highlighting the risk taken in purchasing immovable property in the occupied area by an estimated 5000 British buyers who now face the possibility of similar claims by other usurped Greek Cypriots. With property rights being one of the major issues in reunifications talks the decision also has considerable political impact. Whilst the case will no doubt be cause for grave concern for those who have purchased property in the North, it potentially paves the way to show how a solution could be reached regarding disputed Cyprus property rights in the North .

As things stand things do not look good for the Orams and their ongoing battle to keep their home which they brought in northern Cyprus. No doubt they acted in good faith, but now face some pretty harsh consequences.

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