Service New Brunswick

200 years of land registry documents available in digital format (09/01/06)

NB 7

Jan. 6, 2009

FREDERICTON (CNB) - Thousands of historical land registry documents dating back more than 200 years are now available online.

Greg Byrne, minister responsible for Service New Brunswick (SNB), today announced the digitization of all documents in New Brunswick's land registry. This makes all current and historical land registry documents such as deeds, mortgages and leases available for easy access online.

"The complete digitization of a provincial land registry is an incredible accomplishment for this province and for its many users," said Byrne. "Now, New Brunswickers will be able to easily search and access these documents from their office or home, saving time and avoiding the costs involved in travelling to our offices. It's another step forward in improved service for New Brunswick lawyers and businesses."

The project involved the scanning of more than 200 years' worth of historical documents, including 13 million pages dating to 1784, the first days of New Brunswick as a colony separate from Nova Scotia.

The completion of this three-year project will enable SNB to preserve information of historical significance that would otherwise deteriorate because of use or exposure to less than ideal conditions. More than 18,000 books from all 13 registry offices have been scanned and are now available in digital format. SNB has archived all images to new digital microfilm and optical media, ensuring multiple backup formats of each document.

"Our customers will no longer need to visit a registry office to view or obtain copies of these documents," said Byrne. "They will now be available through the registration index on our PLANET Land network system at the SNB website."

New Brunswickers with valid PLANET accounts will also be able to print from their personal computer, eliminating the customer's costs of copying documents at the registry office.

Access to images of the documents will continue to be provided at registry offices.

09/01/06

MEDIA CONTACT: Brent Roy, communications, Service New Brunswick, 506-453-6775.

09/01/06