Dispensing with Owner Signatures on Land Title Documents Failed

When amending the strata plan, the Strata Property Act only requires 3/4 vote approval of the owners, for many amendments. However, the amendment plan needs to be filed in the Land Title Office and the requirements of the Land Title Act are more onerous: the Land Title Act requires the signature of every registered owner and all charge-holders (mortgagees) of every single strata lot.

In the case of British Columbia (Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure) v Registrar, Victoria Land Title Office, 2017 BCSC 1999, deals with an application to dispense with the signature requirement.

The Ministry had obtained a portion of common property from a strata corporation which was necessary for a highway. The Ministry then attempted to deposit the new land plan with the Land Title Office with less than 100% of the signatures, but with a 3/4 vote approval of the strata corporation. When the LTO refused to register the plan, the Ministry applied to Court to require the LTO to register the plan as the Ministry argued it was unreasonable for the LTO to refuse.

The Court refused and upheld the decision of the LTO. In these cases, with multiple owners per strata lot, and, in some cases, multiple mortgages per strata lot, it can mean that there are over 100 signatures to obtain (for only a 30 strata lot complex). Which means, that it can be months, if not years, to obtain all signatures. While it can be a lengthy process, it may be necessary in many cases depending on the reason for the amendment. Legal advice on the subject is, most often, required to determine the necessary components and whether the amendment is recommended.





TAEYA FITZPATRICK

Taeya Fitzpatrick has specialized in strata law for most of her practice, has won cases for her clients in the BC Supreme Court, the BC Court of Appeal, and assisted with a client succeeding in defending a Civil Resolution Tribunal claim. Taeya offers full services to a strata corporation or a strata owner from redrafting the strata’s bylaws, collection of outstanding strata fees or other charges, issues with bylaw enforcement, to amending the strata plan. For more information on the services provided, you can reach Taeya by email, phone: 250-762-6111, or at her Web Page

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