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In This Volume

  • 16 Except on Saturdays and holidays, the registrar must keep the land title office open to the public for the transaction of business every day from 9 a.m. until 3 p.m.

1979-219-16; 2004-66-76, effective January 20, 2005 (B.C. Reg. 16/2005).

PRACTICE

Hours of Operation

Land title offices are open to the public for general business from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. The Customer Service Centre offers phone or email support 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday to Friday.

For general inquiries, please email customerservice@ltsa.ca or call:

Metro Vancouver area: 604-630-9630, or elsewhere in B.C., Canada, or the U.S.: 1-877-577-5872

Applications for Registration Received before or after Hours of Business

Where the registrar receives an application for registration (that is, time stamps a document) before or after the hours of business, the registrar shows the actual time of receipt, and not the opening hour of business, on the records.

CASE LAW

Power to Admit or Exclude Public outside Regular Hours

The registrar has the power to exclude the public from the office except during the hours the office must be open to the public. The registrar may admit members of the public outside the regular hours, but should not show favouritism in doing so. If a person is admitted outside the regular hours and presents a valid application for registration, the registrar may accept and register it (Re Land Registry Act; Re Continental Explosives Ltd., 1964 CanLII 809 (BC SC)).

Land Title Office Not Open on Saturdays

In April 2015, the plaintiff buyer and defendant seller made a written contract for a house sale. The contract fixed a completion date of December 31, 2015. The parties could delay the completion date until the defendant’s new home was ready for occupation, which was to be triggered by the seller giving 15 days’ notice to move the dates until final occupancy. The parties entered into a new addendum to the contract in December 2015 that reset the completion date to February 26, 2016, later changed to March 26, 2016. That date was the Saturday of the Easter weekend; the plaintiff’s solicitor, KG, formed the view that the date for completion was moved to Tuesday, March 29, 2016 by operation s. 25 of the Interpretation Act, R.S.B.C. 1996, c. 238. On March 24, 2016, the defendant obtained from KG a copy of the contract; she said she had not consented to amendment of the completion date from February to March. She informed KG that her lawyer would contact him. The defendant never received the vendor’s statement of adjustments or documents necessary to complete the contract from KG, despite his efforts. On March 29, 2016, neither party performed under the contract. At trial, the plaintiff abandoned her request for specific performance and claimed damages only. Held, parties left to select new completion date. The contract said the sale would complete at the land title office. The court said s. 16 of the Land Title Act eliminates the need for the land title office to remain open for business on Saturdays and took judicial notice that it is not. The completion date was moved to March 29, 2016 by operation of s. 16 of the LTA and s. 25.2(2) of the Interpretation Act. Both parties were in essential default, and the contract continued with either party retaining the option to reset time of the essence (Grewal v. Lal, 2021 BCSC 844).