Negative Credit Report Ratings/MY CREDIT RATING SHOULD BE GREAT BUT ITS NOT

In these modern times your credit rating can impact all facets of your life from your ability to buy or rent a home to your ability to obtain employment and that is why accurate and credible reporting of alleged credit arrears or non-payment is of the utmost importance.

It is often assumed that credit reporting companies can do no wrong and that any credit notices are beyond question, this is not always the case and you are not helpless and forced to accept damaging reports when such reports are based on errors or the questionable conduct of a creditor.  The Courts have and will take action both to correct these erroneous reports or compensate you for the damages you sustain resulting from a creditor that makes an erroneous or negligent report.

The obligations of credit reporting companies is set out in the Consumer Reporting Act, R.S.O. 1990, chapter C.33 (“Act”) which states;

9 (1) Every consumer reporting agency shall adopt all procedures reasonable for ensuring accuracy and fairness in the contents of its consumer reports.  R.S.O. 1990, c. C.33, s. 9 (1).

13.(1)  Where a consumer disputes the accuracy or completeness of any item of information contained in his or her file, the consumer reporting agency within a reasonable time shall use its best endeavours to confirm or complete the information and shall correct, supplement or delete the information in accordance with good practice.

(2) Where a consumer reporting agency corrects, supplements or deletes information under subsection (1), the consumer reporting agency shall furnish notification of the correction, supplement or deletion to,

(a) all persons who have been supplied with a consumer report based on the unamended file within sixty days before the correction, supplement or deletion is made; and

(b) the persons specifically designated by the consumer from among those who have been supplied with a consumer report based on the unamended file,

(i) where the report contains personal information, within the one-year period preceding the correction, supplement or deletion, and

(ii) where the report contains credit information, within the six-month period preceding the correction, supplement or deletion.

The position of the Courts and their recognition of the importance of the reporting of accurate information both by creditors and credit reporting companies is well outlined in the case of Parmar v Royal Bank of Canada, 2016 ABQB 439 (CanLII) which stated:

[58]           The Court commented on the important role played by credit  reporting agencies in Haskett v. Equifax et al., 2003 CanLII 32896 (ON CA), [2003] 63 O.R. (3d) 577 Ont. C.A., para. 29:

Without credit, one is unable to conduct any financial transactions over the telephone or on the internet. As credit is so ubiquitous, there is nothing exceptional about consumer reliance on credit reporters to carry out their function not only honestly, but accurately, with skill and diligence and in accordance with statutory obligations.

[59]           As a result, credit reporting agencies can be liable to debtors for negligent reports: Haskett; Fair Trading Act Credit and Personal Reports Regulation, AR 193/99, s. 2.1, s. 5.

[60]           Credit reporting agencies are required to provide their reports based on the most reliable evidence reasonably available. Taking into consideration the over 110,000 reports the agencies receive monthly, relying on the credit granting institutions for information seems the only commercially reasonable way for them to carry on business. Their obligation is to set up reasonable procedures for ensuring information is fair and accurate and for investigating disputes: Spencer v. Equifax Canada Inc., 2011 ONSC 7284 (CanLII)2011 ONSC 7284 (CanLII), , 2011 ONSC 7284 (Ont. S.C.J.), para’s 34, 35.

Thus if you believe that your credit rating has been impacted by inaccurate or negligent reporting contact us either by phone or email at;  (905)361-0172 or info@mississaugaparalegal.ca and we will assist you in discovering whether you have remedies that can be pursued.