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Ministry of Energy and Mines and Responsible for Core Review

Mineral Titles Frequently Asked Questions

Private Property

  1. Do I own mineral rights with my land?
     
  2. How can I get a mining claim over my private property?
     
  3. I own private property, how can I find out if a claim is over my property?
     
  4. Can anyone come on my property and start mining without my permission?
     
  5. A miner came onto my property and said that he was going to dig a hole. How do I stop him?

  1. Do I own mineral rights with my land?
    Most private land owners do not own the mineral rights to their property. In some rare cases, as in Crown Granted 2-post Mineral Claims, the owner has rights to the surface and subsurface to varying degrees. For more information, please review Information Update #7 - A Guide to Surface and Subsurface Rights and Responsibilities in British Columbia.
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  3. How can I get a mining claim over my private property?
    As long as the ground in question does not fall within a No Registration Reserve or is outside the designation placer claim areas, acquiring a claim over private property is the same process as on crown land. The real issue is if the claim is acquired with the correct intent. A mineral title can not be acquired for non-mining reasons (see sec 40 (1)(c)) of the Mineral Tenure Act. Please review:

    For a detailed explanation of how to acquire a claim please see the ‘tenure acquisition’ description in the MTO Help Tips.
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  5. I own private property, how can I find out if a claim is over my property?
    Go to the MTO website and open the ‘Mineral Map Viewer’ or the ‘Placer Map Viewer’. Mineral and Placer are two different types of title and therefore must be looked up separately. Navigate to your private property and look to see if there is a mineral title over it. Mineral titles are identified by a mauve color. For help using the Internet Mapping Framework please visit the tutorial website.  Click on the hyperlink under the "Internet Mapping Tutorial" section.
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  7. Can anyone come on my property and start mining without my permission?
    A free miner or their agent can explore for minerals on private land but there are restrictions (see section 11 of the Mineral Tenure Act). Also visit Section 19 of the Mineral Tenure Act regarding Right of Entry on private land. The Land Owner Notification legislation came into affect on June 2, 2008. The Mineral Titles Branch has a very detailed website with this information: Land Owner Notification.
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  9. A free miner can not come onto your property without first notifying you. The free miner is also liable to the land owner for any damage that may occur. Please see Section 11 and Section 19 of the Mineral Tenure Act for details. The Land Owner Notification legislation came into affect on June 2, 2008. Mineral Titles Branch has a very detailed website with this information: http://www.em.gov.bc.ca/Mining/Titles/Land_Owner_Notice.htm