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14 (1) On hearing an application under section 13, the court may do one or more of the following:

  • (a) order that the applicant has a lien on the interest in land of the defaulting owner for the amount recoverable under subsection (2);
  • (b) order that if the amount recoverable under subsection (2) is not paid by the defaulting owner, within 30 days after the date of service of a certified copy of the order on the defaulting owner or within another period the court considers proper, the defaulting owner’s interest in the land be sold under the Supreme Court Civil Rules governing sales by the court;
  • (c) make a further or other order, including an order that the applicant may purchase the interest in the land of the defaulting owner at the sale.
  • (2) The amount recoverable by the applicant is the amount the defaulting owner would, at the time the application is made or repayment is tendered, have been liable to contribute to satisfy the defaulting owner’s share of the original debt if it had been allowed to accumulate until that time.
  • (3) If there is a sale under this section, the transfer to the purchaser must be executed by the registrar of the court, and, on registration, passes title to the interest in land sold.
  • (4) Surplus money received from the sale must be paid into court to the credit of the defaulting owner.

1979-340-14;2010-6-76, effective July 1, 2010.


Scope of Relief

Under s. 14, it is proper to order that an applicant owner has a lien carrying a power of either judicial sale or foreclosure, as may be determined in the action, and to authorize the applicant to commence an action against the defaulting owner. The section does not contemplate the making of any order of foreclosure but simply contemplates a declaration of lien (Fritzke v. Hepting, 1954 CanLII 487 (BC SC)).

On an application by one of two or more registered owners of land under s. 13, the only relief a court may grant is that allowed by s. 14; that is, a declaration that the applicant owner has a lien carrying a power of judicial sale or foreclosure upon the share of the owner in default. The applicant owner may commence an action to enforce the lien. Under s. 14, a court cannot grant a declaration of the rights of the owners or declare that the applicant is the sole owner of the land (Re Land Registry Act; Re Brook v. Brook, 1969 CanLII 761 (BC SC)).

Discretion to Order Sale

The petitioners held 2/22 interests and the respondents held 13/22 interests in a lot providing water access for a subdivision. Over the years, some owners in the subdivision had been delinquent in paying taxes and water rates for the waterfront lot, with the result that some owners paid more than their shares. The petitioners applied under ss. 2, 3, 6, 7, and 10 of the Partition of Property Act, R.S.B.C. 1996, c. 347 and ss. 13 and 14 of the Property Law Act for an order for the sale of the lot. The court refused the order. It was impossible to proceed under the Property Law Act because the court could not determine which owners owned how much. Because the value of the lots would decline if access to the water was lost, it would not be in the interests of the respondents, or those owners who did not appear, to order sale of the waterfront lot. The court also took into account the possibility that the petitioners wished to purchase the waterfront lot and develop it themselves (Lavallee v. Karow, [1988] B.C.J. No. 1445 (QL) (S.C.)).

The first party, a tenant in common with the second, obtained liens against the second party for expenses paid in accordance with s. 13 of the Property Law Act. In an application for a further order under s. 14 of the Act, the first party sought pre-judgment interest under the Court Order Interest Act, R.S.B.C. 1996, c. 79. However, pre-judgment interest is only calculable upon an amount ordered to be paid under a pecuniary judgment, and a lien is not a judgment; it is a charge upon property which may be enforced by an action. Furthermore, the fact that the Act allows a court to order the sale of property if payment is not made within the time set out does not turn the lien into a pecuniary judgment. Such an order is additional relief that may be given if the equities require it and, presumably, the court is able to quantify the amount. If it could be argued that making a further order under s. 14 turns the lien into a judgment, there could still have been no judgment in this case because no such order had been made in the past and the court declined to make the order in the present action. Because the liens were very small in relation to the value of the property and a sale of less than the whole of the two parties’ interests would result in a substantially reduced selling price, it would be inequitable to order the sale of the second party’s interest in the property (R.J. Enterprises Ltd. v. 112028 B.C. Ltd., 1994 CanLII 862 (BC SC)).