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Direction to Land Surveyors No. 2 (August 21, 2008)

Process for Obtaining Approval of Electronic Plans


The audience for this paper includes everyone who seeks approval for a subdivision or road dedication from a provincial approving officer, the person who manages obtaining final approval for a plan from a provincial approving officer, Provincial Approving Officers, Development Technicians and the development approvals staff.


The Electronic Survey Plan process requires that all consent and approval signatures be gathered off the face of the survey plan. Simply put, the medium upon which approval is provided has changed but the requirements for approval have not.

Under the Electronic Survey Plan process, an electronic Application Form has been developed for the purpose of gathering all consents and approvals. The process allows for acquiring all consents and approvals concurrently, and removes the burden of shipping a physical plan to several locations for sign-off.

This new system is designed to strengthen the security around dealing with legal survey plans as well as providing some significant cost and time savings.

When an applicant seeks final approval of an electronic plan, the Development Technician will receive the survey plan showing a pre-assigned plan number in the PDF affixed to a Certification Form which has been secured by the electronic signature of the land surveyor responsible for the survey plan. The Certification Form bears a unique Control Number. The Control Number will have been system-generated when the land surveyor applied his/her electronic signature to the Certification Form.

The Development Technician will also receive an Application Form in PDF. The Application Form also bears the pre-assigned plan number and the Control Number. Control Numbers provide version control. The Control Number on the Application Form will match the Control Number on the Certification Form unless the survey plan has been amended. If the Control Numbers do not match on both forms, the Development Technician will need to contact the person managing the submission of the final plans and documents for an explanation.

To provide approval, the Application Form is printed, signed and returned to the submitter by e-mail, fax, courier or hand delivery. Signing an Application Form has the same legal effect as signing a mylar survey plan.

Before an electronic survey plan is accepted at the land title office (LTO) for registration, a lawyer, notary public or land surveyor must attest to having in their possession the originally-signed Application Forms, or true copies of them, from each signatory listed on the Application Form.


The process of obtaining preliminary layout approval for a subdivision or road dedication has not changed. An applicant must still make application, pay application fees and meet requirements set out by the Approving Officer.

At the time application is made for preliminary layout approval, the Ministry will issue a unique application file number.

It is critical that this file number appear on all subsequent correspondence with the Ministry, and upon the electronic plan, Certification Form and Application Form. The Application number must appear in specific locations on the plan and forms. These locations are shown on the attached examples.

Once all conditions of preliminary layout approval have been met, the applicant may seek final approval within the time allowed in the preliminary layout approval.

The person seeking final approval for submission of plans and documents into the land title office must manage:

  • The submission of all the plans and documents to the Development Technician for final approval
  • The submission of all final approval fees, and following the submission of the approved plans and documents to the LTO for registration provide the Development Technician with a copy of the registered plan and the LTO filing numbers and date of registration.

The final approval package is to be submitted to the Development Technician and is to include:

  • A covering letter
  • A current Certificate of Title
  • A current TX 55 – Tax Clearance certificate
  • All documents required as a condition of approval (for example – covenant documents)
  • The legal plan and affixed Certification Form
  • The Application Form
  • Copies of each Application Form signed by all owners and other consenters

And finally, the appropriate Final Approval Fees. At this time, fees must be delivered by courier, or hand delivery as it is not possible to submit fees electronically. Please ensure that the Ministry of Transportation file number is written on the cheque.

All of the documents that are required as a condition of approval must be submitted to the Development Technician at the same time, other than the final approval fees.

Tip: Any accompanying documents, for example, a covenant, require complete legal descriptions including the pre-assigned subdivision plan number. Any description of a covenant or right of way plan on the Form C and in the terms of instrument should also include the pre-assigned plan number instead of, or as well as, a description of the accompanying covenant or statutory right of way plans.

It would be appreciated if the final approval fees could be delivered concurrently with the rest of the package, however the Development Technician is able to hold the package until receipt of fees.

Upon receipt of the package and the final approval fees, the Development Technician will review the package to ensure that it is complete. Once it is complete the Development Technician sends the Approving Officer:

  • A report on the final subdivision
  • A copy of the covering letter
  • A copy of the TX 55 tax clearance document

All documents required as a condition of approval (for example – covenant documents)

  • The legal plan and affixed Certification Form
  • The Application form
  • A copy of the PLA
  • A copy of the cheque and receipt for final approval fees

When the Approving Officer is in a position to issue final approval, he/she must print the Application Form, physically sign the printed Application Form, and then deliver the signed Application Form back to the person managing the seeking of final approvals. The signed Application Form can be scanned and emailed, faxed, hand delivered or couriered to the manager.

Tip: In accordance with s. 92(1)(c ) Land Title Act the plan must be submitted for deposit into the Land title registry within two months of the date of approval by the Approving Officer.

Upon deposit of all the plans and documents into the LTO, the person managing the final approval of the plan and document package must inform the Development Technician of the filing particulars of the plans and documents.