NOTE: Standard 5.2 and 5.3 combined on February 28, 2014 to form the Standard 5.2 below.
A lawyer who represents a buyer of real property in a transaction that includes the purchase and sale of personal property must consider whether to search the Personal Property Registration System (“P.P.R.S.”) for encumbrances and judgments which attach to the personal property. A lawyer who represents a lender where the collateral includes personal property must search the P.P.R.S. for encumbrances and judgments which attach to the personal property.1
A lawyer who considers whether to conduct a P.P.R.S. search may consider the exemptions for consumer goods having a value of $1,000.00 or less.2
A lawyer who conducts a P.P.R.S. search must search the serial number if the personal property includes serial numbered goods as defined,3 or in all other cases search the name of the “debtor.”4 When reporting the results of such searches, the lawyer should heed the caution against certifying title to personal property.5
A lawyer must consider the possibility of other security instruments, statutory liens, or deemed trusts affecting the personal property.6
A lawyer who represents a lender where the collateral includes personal property must consider registering a notice in the land registry to protect perfection of the security interest in the event the personal property becomes a fixture.7
- Personal Property Security Act, S.N.S. 1995-96, c. 13.
- Personal Property Security Act, S.N.S. 1995-96, c. 13, s.31 & Creditors Relief Act, R.S.N.S. 1989, c.112, s.2B(6).
- See Personal Property Security Act – General Regulations, N.S. Reg. 129/97 for the definition of “serial numbered goods.”
- Personal Property Security Act, S.N.S. 1995-96, c. 13, s.2(1)(m) defines “debtor” to include owners, obligors and transferees in various circumstances. Therefore the buyer and seller should both be searched in purchase and sale transactions, and the owner should be searched in refinancing transactions.
- R. Wright, “Certifying the Uncertifiable – Chattels” (1993) 5. The Claims Wise Bulletin No. 29 at 2.
- These may arise, for example, under the Income Tax Act, R.S.C. 1985, c.1 (5th Supp.), Excise Tax Act, R.S.C. 1985, c.E-15, the Bank Act, S.C. 1991, c.46, s.427, municipal liens and liens in foreign jurisdictions. While these will not apply to personal property in most residential transactions, the lawyer should have regard to these kinds of charges when considering transactions involving personal property.
- Personal Property Security Act, S.N.S. 1995-96, c. 13, ss. 37 and 50; Registry Act, R.S.N.S. 1989, c. 392, ss. 1A(1) and 18A; Land Registration Act, S.N.S. 2001, c. 6, s. 59.
The potential for personal property to become a fixture will often affect security interests in mobile homes, modular homes, furnaces and water heaters, for example. Typical lenders’ instructions on mobile home and modular home transactions vary, and often include express instructions not to register the security in the land registry. It is recommended that lawyers review the lenders’ instructions in each case to determine the extent of their obligations.
Manufactured Home Transfer Form: Bridgewater (PVSC)
Manufactured Home Transfer Form: Dartmouth (PVSC)
Manufactured Home Transfer Form: Port Hawkesbury (PVSC)
Manufactured Home Transfer Form: Truro (PVSC)
MacLean KC, Ian H. / “Personal Property Security Act and Regulations as they apply to mobile homes: Some basic principles” (April 2014)
Approved by Council on February 28, 2014