Program Modernization

This branch has three divisions; Registries, Business and Consumer Services and Alcohol, Gaming, Fuel and Tobacco, and is responsible for legislation, regulation and policy development for programs assigned to Service Nova Scotia.


The Registries division is responsible for legislation, regulation and policy development for the following programs:

Land Programs

Responsible for:

  • Regulating the land titles system established under the Land Registration Act.
  • Regulating the document registration and repository system established under the Registry Act.
  • Maintaining Property Online, the Province’s online property information system that provides
    • Internet query access to land related and parcel mapping information to the public, at Land Registration Offices.
    • Internet query access to land related and parcel mapping information to subscribers
    • Electronic submission of documents and applications pursuant to the Land Registration Act to authorized submitters.

Vital Statistics:

Responsible for: 

  • Maintaining the provincial registry of births, deaths, marriages, stillbirths, legal changes of name, and domestic partnerships.
  • Adjudicating applications and issuing certificates as proof of legal status.
  • Collecting and maintaining data that assists provincial, national and international health organizations.

Registry of Joint Stock Companies

 Responsible for: 

  • Administering legislation and facilitating the formation, registration and related filings of business and non-profit entities.
  • Maintaining an online public searchable registry database.

Personal Property Registry

 Responsible for: 

  • Administering the online self-service registry of security interests in personal property, including the lien check service for online serial number searches by members of the public.

Nova Scotia Business Registry

Responsible for: 

  • Facilitating the use of the business number assigned by the Canada Revenue Agency as a single identifier for businesses dealing with various participating public sector programs.
  • One Business – One Number.

Lobbyist Registry

Responsible for: 

  • Providing a framework for transparency with respect to the lobbying of public officials by individuals and organizations.

Business and Consumer Services:

The Business and Consumer Services division empowers consumers and regulates Nova Scotia’s consumer marketplace by administering modern legislation that balances economic growth with the protection of public interest. Business and Consumer Services serves clients by ensuring efficient processes and clear program requirements in all regulated areas including petroleum pricing, the funeral sector, payday lenders, mortgage brokers, direct sellers, hearing aid sellers, credit bureaus and collection agencies.

Responsible for:

  • The audit, enforcement and compliance of major programs.
  • The statutes that govern condominiums, consumer sales, cemeteries, collection companies, direct sellers, funeral services, mortgage brokers, lenders, petroleum product sales, real estate transactions, and residential tenancies.
  • Public awareness functions in the areas of consumer and business policy.
  • Consumer protection initiatives.
  • Consumer complaints.
  • Heating Assistance Rebates.
  • The licensing and inspection of regulated businesses.

Key Programs:

  • Inspection of businesses we regulate
  • Heating Assistance Rebate Program (HARP)
  • Condominium registration
  • Collection Agency licensing
  • Consumer complaint assistance
  • Payday Lender licensing
  • Direct Seller permitting
  • Lender and Agent of Lender licensing
  • Mortgage Broker licensing
  • Consumer Reporting Agency (Credit Bureau licensing)
  • Residential Tenancies
  • Petroleum promotion registration
  • Hearing aid seller permitting
  • Cemetery & Funeral Services (Cemetery and Funeral Services licensing)

Alcohol, Gaming, Fuel and Tobacco:

Responsible for

  • Licensing and regulating alcohol, gaming and amusement activities.
  • Ensuring that tax is appropriately collected for fuel, tobacco, sales taxes and corporate capital taxes for financial institutions.
  • Enforcement of gas regulation.
  • Investigation and enforcement of alcohol, gaming, and amusement activities.
  • Enforcement of the smoke free places act.
  • Reducing contraband tobacco and combat tobacco smuggling in Nova Scotia through partnership with the RCMP.
  • Licensing and registering liquor establishments, U-vints and U-brews, special occasion liquor services, casinos, video lottery terminals, bingos, and more.
  • Film classification for release in Nova Scotia and the Maritimes.
  • The audit and enforcement of the Revenue Act, Sales Tax Act, and Corporate Capital Tax Act.