Where the original title is still paper, the original title is a paper document on file in a book at the land titles office. This document officially records certain information pertaining to land, including the owner of the land, the land description of the property in the title, and the interests and claims of interest of parties other than the registered owner. Where the title is now in the land titles electronic database all of this same information is stored electronically and is assigned a title number. There is no actual physical title. However the title is created, on paper or electronically, the Province of Manitoba guarantees the information in the title.
A duplicate title (or duplicate certificate of title) is a document which reflects all of the information that was contained in the original title as of the moment the duplicate title was created, either at the same moment as the original title, or at some later date as requested by the owner of the lands in the title.
Given the fact that duplicate titles, which are in the owners’ possession, cannot be kept up-to-date by land titles, the duplicate title will not always stay identical to the original title. The reason for this lies in the fact that land titles will accept for registration a number of documents, including caveats, judgments and builders’ liens without requiring the production or presentation of the duplicate title. As a result these instruments will be shown on the original title and not on the duplicate title. Accordingly, a duplicate title can only be trusted to be current as of the date on which it was created.
It is very important to be aware that duplicate titles are valuable documents, documents that must be kept in a safe place. To begin with, land titles will not allow a transfer or a mortgage to be registered in land title unless either we have the duplicate title in our files or it is submitted by the client with the transfer or the mortgage. Given the manner in which land titles treats duplicate titles, certain lending institutions will lend monies to clients, holding only the duplicate title as security.
In response to the many and often considerable complications arising from the loss or destruction of duplicate titles, land titles no longer issues duplicate titles.