Canada: Land-owner transparency requirements (British Columbia)

New provincial reporting requirements under the “Land Owner Transparency Act”

New provincial reporting requirements under the “Land Owner Transparency Act”

Certain corporations, trusts or partnerships that held an interest in British Columbia real estate on or before 30 November 2020 may have new provincial reporting requirements under the “Land Owner Transparency Act.”

These rules require certain entities holding registered legal title in British Columbia real estate to file a "transparency report" with British Columbia's "Land Owner Transparency registry" by 30 November 2021.

British Columbia implemented the new rules to track ultimate individual interest holders of real estate via a public and searchable registry. Specifically, relevant corporations, trustees of relevant trusts or partners of relevant partnerships (i.e., the reporting bodies) that are subject to these rules must provide personal information about certain individuals (i.e., the interest holders) who ultimately hold an interest in the property, among other details.

Background

A reporting body (a relevant corporation, trustee of a relevant trust, or partner of a relevant partnership) is required under the law to file a "transparency declaration" as well as a "transparency report" with the Land Owner Transparency registry, when it files an application to register an interest in B.C. real estate on and after 30 November 2020.

For reporting bodies that held registered legal title in B.C. real estate on or before November 30, 2020 and continue to hold registered legal title as of 30 November 2021, they are required to file a transparency report by 30 November 2021.

Reporting bodies must also file a new transparency report within two months of any change to the interest holders (even when there has not been a transfer of legal title to the land). This situation may arise where the reporting body undergoes a reorganization, estate freeze or acquisition.

The transparency report generally requires information about:

  • The reporting body (names and business numbers)
  • The interest holders of the relevant real estate (e.g., name, date of birth, address, social insurance number, tax number, tax residence)
  • The settlor of the trust (in the case of a reporting body that is a relevant trust)
  • The person certifying the report (name, position, and contact information)

Read an October 2021 report prepared by the KPMG member firm in Canada

 

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