Prospectors in the province of British Columbia require a Free Miners Certificate (commonly referred to as an FMC) to prospect outside of Gold Panning reserves that have been setup by the province and generous donors, or to register their own personal claim. One item many people struggle with when first getting into prospecting, is obtaining licensing, and learning how to strike a claim. The process seems complicated and daunting, however, its quite simple and doesn’t take much time or money.
The first step in obtaining an FMC and registering a claim is to obtain a BCeID. This allows you to log into various provincially run government servers. A BCeID can only be obtained by visiting a Point of Service Location in British Columbia. There is no fee for this username and password and its good for life.
Once a BCeID has been obtained, an FMC can be purchased from the Mineral Titles Branch for $25.00 per year and needs to be renewed annually in order to purchase claims, submit Statements of Work, and Notices of Work, or to push a claim’s expiry date forward forward. Licenses can either be purchased in person at a Mineral Titles Branch location, or online through the BC MTO website. FMC’s do not need to remain active throughout the year and work can continue on a Placer or Mineral claim after it has expired. However, be sure to renew it prior to the expiry of the claim should you want to retain ownership of it.