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Tag Archives: Land Title Office

Is Property Transfer Tax Reform on the Horizon?

Posted in Commercial, Property Tax Assessment, Residential

The Property Transfer Tax Act (British Columbia) could soon be amended to impose property transfer tax (“PTT”) on beneficial transfers of real estate.  The NDP-Green Party Coalition Government budget, scheduled for release this month, is expected to focus on the real estate market and PTT reform may be on the agenda. … Continue Reading

The Anti-Avoidance Blues: Does a Foreigner’s Title Nominee Share Purchase Constitute an “Avoidance Transaction”?

Posted in Property Tax Assessment

On August 2, 2016, the Province of British Columbia enacted amendments to the Property Transfer Tax Act (British Columbia) (the “Act”) which introduced a new 15% property transfer tax (colloquially referred to as the “foreign buyer tax”).  This tax currently applies when a foreign national or foreign corporation purchases residential property situated in the GVRD.  The amendments also include a new anti-avoidance rule applicable to the foreign buyer tax only.  This rule has yet to be considered by a Court, but on its face it may affect the ability of a foreign national or foreign corporation to safely avail itself … Continue Reading

Proposed amendment to Builders Lien Act expected to be controversial

Posted in Commercial, Construction, Land Use, Policy

On May 5th 2015, Members’ Bill M 216 received first reading in the BC Legislative Assembly. The proposed Builders Lien Notice to Owners Act would amend the Builders Lien Act to impose two new preconditions on a party’s right to file a claim of lien: (1) service of a detailed written notice on the land owner of the lien claimant’s intention to file a claim of lien, and (2) proof that the owner has been served.… Continue Reading

Gone but not forgotten: restrictive covenant restored to title against the interests of a beneficial owner

Posted in Commercial, Land Use, Policy

Is a beneficial owner of real property affected by a restrictive covenant that was mistakenly removed from title? The BC Supreme Court considered this question in BC Retail Partners (Boitanio Mall) Ltd. v. Overwaitea Food Group, 2015 BCSC 404.

In 2004, BC Retail Partners General Partnership (the “General Partnership”) and BC Retail Partners (Boitanio Mall) Ltd. (“BC Retail”) purchased one of the three lots comprising Boitanio Mall in Williams Lake, British Columbia. BC Retail was the registered owner of the lot, and the trustee, nominee and agent for the General Partnership, which was the beneficial owner of the lot.… Continue Reading

When the Keyboard is Mightier than the Sword: Mandatory Online Resolution of Strata Disputes

Posted in Land Use, Policy

As readers of this blog will know, as a result of changes implemented by the Land Title and Survey Authority on November 1, 2012, almost all documents and plans submitted to the land title office for registration must now be submitted electronically. Recently, there has been a similar significant development regarding strata disputes.

On March 10, 2015, the Civil Resolution Tribunal Amendment Act was introduced and, if passed, will make it mandatory for strata disputes to be submitted to the Civil Resolution Tribunal (CRT). The CRT is Canada’s first ever online tribunal, and is intended to be accessible 24 hours … Continue Reading

Amendments to registered interests: who comes out on top?

Posted in Land Use, Policy

To what extent can a subsequent lender rely on the explicit terms of prior registered interests? The recent decision by the Alberta Court of Queen’s Bench, CareVest Capital Inc. v 1336868 Alberta Ltd, 2015 ABQB 94, considered that very issue.

The facts in the case were as follows. In 2007, Bowstein Holdings Inc. loaned $18.1 million to 1336868 Alberta Ltd., which loan was secured by a first priority mortgage registered in the Alberta Land Titles Office (the “LTO”). CareVest Capital Inc. subsequently loaned money to 1336868, which loan was secured by two different mortgages, likewise registered in … Continue Reading


Posted in Municipal

It is not uncommon for parties to enter into contracts for the purchase and sale of real estate that contain defects which may affect their enforceability.

To be enforceable, a purchase contract must set out the essential terms of the agreement; in particular, it must clearly describe the “three Ps” (parties, property and price) and other key terms such as the completion date and the particulars of any vendor financing or leaseback.  Although these legal requirements are well known, even the most experienced real estate professional will occasionally fail to adequately describe one or more essential terms in a purchase … Continue Reading