Tips for Searching

This page provides you with assistance in using the Search all Decisions page.


You can use one or more of the search boxes to look up decisions. After you have typed in your search criteria, hit the Enter key or click on Start Search at the bottom of the page.

If you are not sure whether the property has been appealed to the Board, we suggest you first search for the appeal using the Look up Appeal Status search page.

Once you have the appeal number from looking up the appeal status, it will be much easier to locate any decision by entering this number in the Appeal number search box. A link to the decision will also be available from the Status of Appeal page.

If your first search returns many decisions, it may be difficult to find the one you are looking for. You can return to the Search all Decisions page and add more search criteria to narrow down your search results.

If you want to erase all of your previous search criteria: click on Clear Search Criteria at the bottom of the page. If you forget to do this you might not get any search results, because the criteria that you entered in your previous search will still be there.

Date range:

These search boxes will return decisions that were released by the Board between the dates you enter. You can enter the dates by either:

  • Clicking on the calendar icon on the right of the box and selecting your dates; or
  • Typing in the year-month-day in number format (e.g. January 12, 2010 would be 2010-01-12).

Appeal number:

The Board will advise the appeal participants of the unique appeal number assigned to a case. The format of the appeal number is xxxx-xx-xxxxx (e.g. 2010-09-00023). The website will add the dashes for you as you enter the appeal number.

Appellant / Respondent Name:

You do not have to use all the search boxes. For example, you may choose to only enter the last name.

For the Organization box, we suggest you use a shorthand method:

  • By typing the * character after a partial organization name you will get all decisions that have an Appellant / Respondent organization name with the same beginning.

  • For example if you enter Timber* , you will get any decisions with the Appellant/Respondent organization that starts with Timber, such as Timberwest Forest Products Ltd; Timberwest Forest Ltd; Timber Company.

  • We suggest you use the * character, as you will not get any returns unless you type in the organization name exactly as spelled in the Board’s database. For example, if the organization is ABC Company Ltd. you will not find decisions if you type in ABC Company Limited. A better way to find decisions would be to enter ABC Company*.

  • The * character does not operate on the first and last name search boxes.

Roll number:

You must enter the full roll number with all the dots and dashes for this search box to work. Include the Assessment Area, the School District, Jurisdiction, and then the Roll number.

  For example for:
            Assessment Area: 19
            School District: 23
            Jurisdiction: 723
            Roll number: 14835.800
Enter: 19-23-723-14835.800

In-Person Hearing Date:

You can use this search box if the Board has held an in-person hearing on the appeal. If the hearing was held over a number of days, just enter the first date when the hearing started.

Note: most appeals are settled without a hearing and many, that have a hearing, are heard through written submissions (i.e. there is no in-person hearing). This search box will not return those decisions.  

Decision content search box:

You can search for a single word, multiple words or a phrase within a decision - following an in-person or written submission hearing. This box does not operate on orders from a recommendation, withdrawal or dismissal.

This tool is especially useful when you are trying to locate decisions that relate to a specific topic or issue:

  • For example, if you want to find decisions on waterfront properties in the Gulf Islands, you could type in waterfront Gulf Islands. This will only return decisions that have all three words in the document. This search does not guarantee all the decisions will be of waterfront properties in the Gulf Islands, as the decision could be for an interior property, but be saying something about waterfront in the Gulf Islands.

  • Use quotation marks if you are searching for more than one word and want the exact wording. E.g. if you type in “Gulf Islands” you will only get Decisions that have the both words together. However if you don’t use the quotation marks you will get all Decisions that have the words gulf and islands but these words may be separated (e.g. would return a decision that said: the property is located on one of the islands in the Gulf).

  • Use the * character to search for words with the same beginning. For example, if you enter key*, you will get decisions that have the words key, keying, keyhole, keyboard.

  • To use special characters like &, |, $, #, etc. (except for brackets), enclose the text being searched for in quotation marks. For example, to search for the text: FF&E, enter it as: "FF&E".

Searches that do not work: The following searches will not work properly in the Decision content search box:

  • Searching for single-digit numbers. For example: you can not search for section 1 of the Assessment Act or a subsection like section 23(1) of the Act. If you do this search you will get a list that includes many more decisions than you are looking for.

Finding text in the Decision document: When you view a decision, you can locate specific word(s) using the Find function. Bring up the Find function hitting Ctrl+F or by selecting Edit on the tool bar then Find in the drop down menu.

Setting relationship between criteria:

If you use more than one search box you have two options for how the search is done:

  1. AND Criteria: This is the default. It will return only those decisions which meet the criteria in ALL the search boxes. This is a narrower search than the OR option.
  For example, if you enter a start and end date of 2008-01-03 to 2008-01-31 and enter waterfront in the Decision content search box, you will only get decisions from January 3 to 31, 2008 which also had the word waterfront in the document.
  1. OR Criteria: This will return Decisions which meet ANY of the criteria in the search boxes. This is a much broader search. We caution you that this method will often return many, many decisions (possibly in the 100’s or 1,000’s)
  For example, if you enter a start and end date of 2008-01-03 to 2008-01-31 and enter waterfront in the Decision content search box you will get ALL decisions that were made from January 3 to 31, 2008 and all decisions that had the word waterfront in the document (irrespective when the decisions were made).

Please contact the Board if you need assistance in using this Search tool. We will be pleased to assist you.

About the Board
About the Board