Reference Plan

These plans are deposited in the local Land Registry Office and are graphical representations of descriptions of land. Each Land Registry Office has a unique number, and reference plan numbers include the number of the office in which they are deposited. Reference plans show the surveyed boundary and dimensions as well as any physical or documentary evidence that could affect the title to the

This may include the location of fences, hedges, retaining walls, or overhead wires in relation to the boundaries, and any easements or rights-of-way that are evident or that are registered on title. Buildings or other improvements on the property are generally not shown unless they were used to position the boundary or they encroach on the property. A reference plan is necessary for a severance.

Preparing a reference plan, or “R-plan,” begins with the creation of a draft reference plan showing the proposed severance. A draft R-plan is used in the application for consent. The draft might be approved as is or with some revisions.
Once the draft is approved, the R-plan is deposited at the local Land Registry Office. Here, the plan is assigned a unique number and becomes part of the public record. Depositing the reference plan does not in itself create the severance of land. Lawyers must then go through the process of changing the land description to assign appropriate parts on the R-plan to the appropriate parcels.

Situations requiring reference plans could include one neighbour selling a piece of his property to another or a farmer carving out building lots from a larger parcel. Reference plans are also made to illustrate easements or rights-of-way.

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