STATUTE LAW (MISCELLANEOUS PROVISIONS) BILL 1999 - Addendum to The Law Society's Property Committee's Submissions dated 3 March 2000

The Law Society's Property Committee wishes to supplement its paper dated 3 March 2000 on the Bill as follows:

  1. In the earlier Submissions, the Committee examined the existing relief available to mortgagors to tackle problems associated with old, outdated mortgages that have not yet been formally discharged. This involves taking proceedings against the mortgagee and seeking a declaration that the mortgage is time no longer subsisting or capable of taking effect on the basis that the mortgagee is time barred under Sections 7 & 19 of the Limitation Ordinance ("LO").

  2. The Committee has expressed doubt in paragraph B4 of its paper on the availability of such relief in cases where no repayment date is specified in the relevant mortgage. S.19 of the L.O. states that "No action shall be brought to recover any principal sum of money secured by a mortgage or other charge on property, or to recover proceeds of the sale of land, after the expiration of 12 years from the date when the right to receive the money accrued". If there were no specified repayment date, when the right to receive the money accrues and thus the limitation period starts to run will be unclear.

  3. The Committee has subsequently come across a relevant decision in Yeung Kong v. Wong Pak Chaw HCMP No. 1305/98. In that case, it was decided that a right to receive the money under S.19 accrued and hence time began to run against the mortgagee under that section, as soon as the loan was made.


The Property Committee
The Law Society of Hong Kong
17 March 2000