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What’s covered: real-life paid claims stories.

FCT is a pioneer in title insurance in Canada. Our several decades of experience allows us to constantly adapt and enhance our coverage to remain competitive in the marketplace. Here are some real-life claims stories to illustrate some of the issues covered under a title insurance policy. These examples are taken from actual claim submissions received from insured’s and settled by FCT. They are provided for illustration purposes only and are based on the circumstances of both the specific claim and policy in question.

$103,729.43 paid

Nature of claim: title fraud

When an Ontario condo owner was trying to sell her property, she discovered a second mortgage on its title that she had never taken out. The sale was threatening to fall through, thanks to a fraudulent $100,000 loan. But fortunately, when she had first purchased the condo years prior, she had also purchased a title insurance policy from FCT.

Once the lender knew that we were looking into the case, they were happy to let the sale close on time, with a holdback. Once we determined that fraud had occurred, we compensated the lender for the full amount of the mortgage holdback, plus interest, for a total of $103,729.43.

$115,284.32 paid

Nature of claim: survey issue

One north Ontario homeowner’s trouble started with a dispute over pipes. She and her neighbour had discovered that her water and sewage lines didn’t connect to her street. Instead, they connected to the next street over via her neighbour’s property. They forced her to relocate her water and sewer lines at huge expense. But fortunately, she had a title insurance policy in place with FCT. We were able to cover the cost of moving the offending lines and resolving the issue for the homeowner.

$58,000.00 paid

Nature of claim: title defect

The owner of a small-town property outside of Kamloops had always relied on an easement for access across his neighbour’s property. So when the neighbour started suing him to get a court order that would reduce the easement size, he was facing a significant impediment to his ability to access the property. But fortunately he had a title insurance policy with FCT, and the lawsuit triggered its included duty to defend. FCT retained counsel and ultimately negotiated a settlement with the neighbour as well as covering the owner’s legal costs, giving him peace of mind along with his coverage.

$10,111.50 paid

Nature of claim: work order issue

The buyer of a new-build Edmonton home was happy at first he’d decided not to go with an older property, but was shocked to discover his new home’s expensive secret. The year before, the City had completed a mandatory grading inspection on the property, which ensures that water drains properly off the land. The builder had failed the inspection and the City had issued a report with all the problems that year, but the buyer didn’t find out about it until after moving in. Facing the cost of having a contractor undertake work in order to ensure grading sign off he reached out to FCT, and we were able to cover the fixes to the grading.

$41,370.00 paid

Nature of claim: building permit issue

About a year after moving in, the owner of a rural west Alberta home went outside to find a huge depression in his yard—his septic bed had collapsed. After the City searched the property records, it turned out that the septic system had been built without a permit. The vendor hadn’t disclosed the condition of the septic system, and now the owner knew why. Fortunately, he had a title insurance policy with FCT, so his next call was to us. We were able to cover the full cost of replacing the septic system, this time with the right permits.

$9,200.00 paid

Nature of claim: lien issue

When a homeowner northwest of Halifax discovered a lien on his property, he could never have guessed who had registered it: a golf course. The home came with golf course privileges and it turned out the previous owner had a membership at that course, which meant a membership agreement had been registered on the property’s title. This became a problem as the previous owner had stopped paying membership fees—the arrears had stacked up into a $9,200 debt owed to the golf course and they were threatening to register a lien against the property. This would then prevent the new owner from selling or refinancing it without paying it off. But thanks to his title insurance policy with FCT, he was protected. We were able to cover the arrears he’d inherited from the previous owner and resolve the issue.

$20,542.09 paid

Nature of claim: condo issue

The board of a Barrie condominium completed a reserve fund study and decided they would need to levy a special assessment to shore up the fund. Nine months later, a couple moving into that building got a status certificate for their unit that made no mention of the special assessment. Five months after they moved in, they received a bill for $20,542.09 and were shocked—they had no idea this expense was coming. But luckily, they had a title insurance policy with FCT. Because the condo corporation knew about the assessment but didn’t disclose it in the status certificate, we were able to cover the full amount and let them get back to enjoying their property in peace.

$9,014.34 paid

Nature of claim: HVAC lien issue

The new owner of a southern Ontario home got her first utility bill since moving in and it contained an unpleasant surprise. It listed charges for rental of a furnace and A/C unit, which she hadn’t agreed to—she’d only agreed to rent a water heater. She had purchased title insurance from FCT as part of closing, so she reached out and we investigated. It turned out that the notice of lease on the title everyone had thought was for the water heater was actually for the furnace and A/C unit. Without title insurance, she would have been stuck with the payment, but thankfully we were able to cover it.

$26,140.66 paid

Nature of claim: survey issue

One of the things that had attracted the owner of a central B.C. home to the property was its natural space, with a greenhouse and sitting area out back. But two years after she moved in, she received notice from the City that they were on City land. An updated survey was showing her structures encroaching, and she was now facing a sudden and massive expense to move them. But luckily for her, she’d also purchased title insurance with the property. We were able to cover all her contracting costs and get her back to enjoying her green space in peace.

$105,982.70 paid

Nature of claim: building permit issue

A couple bought a fourplex property and got to work renovating it for new renters. But in the process of getting everything approved, they made an alarming discovery. The building was legally designated as a duplex, and the City informed the couple that they needed to overhaul the building to change it to the proper zoning. The City advised the couple to contact their title insurer, and to their relief, they had a policy with FCT. We were able to cover the cost of renovating the building and the couple was able to start renting out to tenants.

Have a question about your claim?

We encourage you to contact the claims team at FCT with any questions you may have about your situation. Our claims handlers will be happy to answer your questions and guide you through the submission process. Get in touch Monday to Friday, 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. (ET) by phone at 905.287.4325 or 1.866.515.5516, or send us an email at