Skip to main content

In This Volume

  • 82 (1) Immediately on a judgment being entered or recovered in British Columbia, the judgment may be registered in any or all of the land title offices in British Columbia.
  • (2) From the time of registering it, the judgment forms a lien and charge on all the land of the judgment debtor in the land title districts in which the judgment is registered, in the same manner as if charged in writing by the judgment debtor under his or her signature and seal.
  • (3) After the registration of the judgment, the judgment creditor may, if he or she wishes to do so, proceed at once on the lien and charge created by it.

1979-75-75; B.C. Reg. 130/98, effective April 16, 1998.

PRACTICE

Features of Judgment Registration System Before October 31, 1979

Before October 31, 1979, a judgment creditor who wished to enforce their judgment against a debtor’s land registered the judgment in a general alphabetical register of judgment debtors kept in the land title office. A judgment registered in the judgment register book formed a lien and charge on all the lands of the judgment debtor in the particular land title district. The registrar did not note a judgment on title except where property changed hands subject to a judgment. The registrar generally did not register any dealings affecting property subject to a judgment unless the judgment was cancelled or an application for registration was made subject to the judgment. Judgments registered in the judgment book expired two years after registration or renewal of registration unless they were renewed.

Maintenance of Register of Judgments

The alphabetical register of judgments has been abolished. Judgments are now registered in the same manner as charges. See s. 210 of the Land Title Act in this Manual.

CROSS REFERENCES AND OTHER SOURCES OF INFORMATION

See Di Castri, Registration of Title to Land, vol. 3, para. 928.

CASE LAW

Priorities

Under s. 82(2) of the Act, the effect of which is now spent, a registered judgment forms a lien and charge on the lands of the judgment debtor in any land registration district in which the judgment is registered. That charge is the same as if the land had been charged in writing by the judgment debtor under their hand and seal. The judgment debtor cannot alienate the land free of the charge. If a court order does so under what is now s. 15 of the Law and Equity Act, R.S.B.C. 1996, c. 253 and Rule 50(9) [now Rule 21-7(9)], then the priorities in relation to the fund must be the same as the priorities in relation to the land which it replaces unless, for some specific reason, the court expressly orders otherwise. Any other view would be inconsistent with the concept of sale in foreclosure proceedings and would create an incentive for judgment creditors to initiate sale proceedings rather than maintain the registration of their judgments as security (Roadburg v. R., 1980 CanLII 407 (BC CA); followed in Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce v. 1679 Investments Ltd., 1982 CanLII 660 (BC SC), and Farm Credit Corp. Canada v. Krosigk, [1986] B.C.J. No. 2689 (QL) (S.C.)).

The mere entry and registration of a money judgment under s. 82(1) of the Act without more is not tantamount to a complete transaction and does not give priority over a floating charge debenture that crystallizes before the charge is proceeded upon (Andrekson v. Peerless Pipe & Equipment (1971) Ltd., 1982 CanLII 476 (BC CA)).

Joint Tenancy

A judgment creditor registered its judgment against the defendant’s interest as a joint tenant in matrimonial property. The judgment creditor applied twice for an order under s. 96 of the Act that the defendant’s interest be sold, but the court deferred the application both times. The judgment creditor registered a lis pendens in the land title office. When the defendant died, the registrar transmitted the property to the defendant’s wife, the other joint tenant. Sections 82, 86, and 108 of the Act do not change the law as set out in Re Young, 1968 CanLII 574 (BC CA), that registration of a judgment against the interest of a joint tenant does not sever the joint tenancy. The court therefore refused the judgment creditor’s application to sever the joint tenancy (Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce v. Muntain, 1985 CanLII 716 (BC SC)).