BC’s New Property Registry 2019: A good idea?

* this is a brief commentary on the topic of BC’s newly proposed property registry. For more information, contact our office.

How does owning a condo in the name of my company raise the risk that the owner is committing fraud, laundering money or evading taxes?

As usual these unsubstantiated assumptions are made by the government and then blindly repeated by the reporter without question.

Rather than creating a whole new bureaucracy (something that the NDP government excels at), just add a few lines to the current electronic Property Transfer Tax form to include the name of the beneficial (“real”) owner if it’s not the same as the registered owner.

BC proeprty registry identity beneficial ownership twitter

For corporate ownership, the real owner of the property is often the company, so that information would not change.

If you want to know who the shareholders of the corporate owner are, then a simple amendment to the BC Corporations Act to require the recording of shareholders in the Corporate Registry would suffice.

At the moment, information about shareholders is NOT required for incorporations nor annual corporate filings, something which is long overdue.

As usual, the BC NDP government wants to look like it is doing something of value while choosing the most expensive way to do it –not exactly a surprise.


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DISCLAIMER: The foregoing is not legal advice and is presented for information purposes only. Readers of this material should consult with their own legal counsel before making a decision based on this legislation.

For information about this please feel free to contact  Kenneth Pazder or Melissa Valana at 604-682-1509.