Question 5

How is a search of title conducted?  How is registration completed?


Title searches are generally conducted electronically through Alberta Registries SPIN system. PDF copies of title and encumbrances printed easily. Copies of condo plans ordered online and usually available for pick up within one day.

Registration is still done manually. An electronic copy of the Document Registration Request (DRR) form can be pre-filed to "get in line" prior to the submission of the originals to the land titles office. Original copies of transfers and mortgages are still submitted to Calgary or Edmonton land titles offices and registration usually takes one to two business days.

British Columbia:

Title searches can be obtained in-person at a land title office or electronically by anyone with a BC Online account.

Land title registration is completed by submitting an application over the counter or electronically (see registration process below), and sometimes using the service of a professional registry agent.


A search of title must be conducted at the appropriate Land Titles Office where title is still in "paper" form. However, where title is in "electronic" form, a searcher may conduct a search either at the Land Titles Office or remotely via electronic communication through the entity which provides the searching service (most lawyers are equipped to conduct electronic searches). Registration of instruments at a Land Titles Office is effected by submission of "paper" documents (which must be accompanied by a "real property registration application"), and to date, it is not possible to effect registrations electronically.

In October 2017, the use of electronic forms became mandatory.

New Brunswick:


All properties are searchable electronically, in the Registry System or Land Titles System. All documents have been scanned and put on PLANET, an online source of land registration, assessment, mapping and information services operated by Service New Brunswick. PLANET is available online at the lawyer's office. Copies of deeds, plans and other documents are available online and can be printed at the lawyer’s office. There are a limited number of documents still available to be paper viewed at various registry offices.


Electronic registration is mandatory in all 15 counties for Transfers, Mortgages, Collateral Mortgages and Discharge of Mortgages. The remaining documents are still to be paper filed.

Newfoundland and Labrador:

Land titles registry system.

Search title to earliest registered deeds that weren't destroyed in the Great Fire of 1892. Unless, there is a quieting in which case no further search is required.  

Primarily professional title searchers are engaged to search the title and report back. This normally costs $150 - $200 for regular transactions - a disbursement paid by clients. Deeds can be searched online with purchased registry access, but these electronic versions only go back to the 1980s, so a full search cannot be completed remotely.

Deeds can only be registered at the Registry of Deeds in St.John’s.

Northwest Territories:

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Nova Scotia:


Registrations of most documents are done by e-submission while others require paper filing.


Title searches are conducted electronically through the Nova Scotia Property Online computerized system accessible by subscription.

Most documents are scanned and submitted electronically except for a few documents which must be done manually.

With the electronic filing, lawyers and other permitted users keep the originals until they have been registered and may then give the originals to their client, the bank etc.

When documents are paper filed, the originals are scanned into the computer system by the staff at the Land Registration Office and then returned to the lawyer.


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Search: For properties converted to the electronic registry software, the search is available on-line on the lawyer's desktop. Copies of the title abstract, documents and plans registered are available to be printed on the lawyer's office computer.

Registration: Electronic registration is mandatory throughout Ontario’s 54 registry county offices via software (Teraview) operated by Teranet, a private company under contract with the government until 2067. In 2018, the Teraview desktop software was migrated to a cloud service.

Prince Edward Island:

The title search is conducted at the Registry Office. We have three registries in PEI – Prince County Registry Office in Summerside and both the Queens County and Kings County Registries in Charlottetown. There is no electronic registration system in PEI. A title searcher would search “conveyances to” each owner for a 40 year period, or for such longer period as is required in order to locate a warranty deed that is at least forty years old (with a few exceptions, such as a deed from the Director, Veterans Land Act, or a certificate of title under the Quieting Titles Act).

A title searcher will search “conveyances from” and “mortgages from” all of the owners of the property during the 40 year period to ensure there are no unsatisfied mortgages or pieces of the parcel that have already been conveyed. Mechanics’ liens, judgments and pending actions against anyone who has owned the property in the last 20 years are also searched.

Registration must be completed at the land registry office. In most cases registration can occur on the same day the document is received at the registry office. Original documents are required for registration and the execution of the document must be proven in accordance with the Registry Act. The document to be registered must be accompanied by the registration fee and payment of the Land Transfer Tax, if applicable. Deeds must also be accompanied by an affidavit of transfer sworn by the purchaser or the purchaser’s agent (lawyer).


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Searches conducted online (ISC website).

Registration completed via submitting “packet” to ISC electronically.

Yukon Territory:

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