Financial and Consumer Affairs Authority of Saskatchewan

FCAA is Saskatchewan’s financial and consumer marketplace regulator.

Credit Reporting Agencies

  • Credit Reporting Agencies

    For information about credit reporting agencies select from the options below.

     

     

    Definitions

    The Credit Reporting Act sets out what information credit reporting agencies are allowed to collect, who can provide that information to them, who can use credit reports, and what the reports can be used for. The Act applies to reports made on individual consumers.

    In summary, a credit report is a report that contains a “snapshot" of an individual’s credit health or behavioral worthiness. The report may contain loan repayment history, amount of credit cards owned, outstanding debt, court judgments, places or residence, health history (in some cases),  and other  personal information such as marital status, number of dependants, age, education, and places of employment . These reports are often used by lenders, insurers, employers, businesses, landlords, and voluntary non-profit organizations to assess one’s credit, health or behavioral worthiness and/or to set premiums or fees for services .

    The collectors and distributors of credit and personal information are generally private businesses. In Saskatchewan, a credit reporting agency must be licensed and is governed by The Credit Reporting Act.

    Pursuant to The Credit Reporting Act:

    1. A “credit report” means any written, oral or other communication by a credit reporting agency of credit information, personal information, or both, pertaining to a consumer.

    2. A “credit reporting agency” means a person who provides credit reports:

    (i) for gain or profit; or
    (ii) on a regular, co-operative and non-profit basis;

    3. “Credit information” means the following information about a consumer:

    (i) the consumer’s name, age, marital status and number of dependents;
    (ii) the name and age of the spouse of the consumer;
    (iii) the consumer’s current address and any former addresses;
    (iv) the occupation of the consumer, including:

    (A) the educational and professional qualifications of the consumer; and

    (B) the consumer’s current and former places of employment;

    (v) the consumer’s income or estimated income, paying habits, assets and outstanding debt obligations, including cost of living obligations;

    4. “Personal information” means information about a consumer’s character, reputation, health, physical or personal characteristics and mode of living, but does not include credit information.

     

    Consent or notice required

    Section 19 of the Act states:

    19 (1) No person shall request or obtain a credit report for a purpose mentioned in clause 17(1)(a) unless:

    (a) the consumer has provided his or her consent; or

    (b) the person:

    (i) provides written notice to the consumer that a credit report will be obtained; and
    (ii) provides the consumer with the name and address of the credit reporting agency providing the credit report.

    (2) The consent mentioned in clause (1)(a) may be obtained by any method that permits the person to produce evidence that the consumer consented, including prominently displaying the information respecting the consent in a clear and comprehensible manner in an application for credit, insurance, employment or tenancy.



    Limits Prescribed

    The Act places limits on the kinds of information that a credit reporting agency can include in a credit report and who can receive and use that information. For example, a credit report cannot include the following information:

    • information about any bankruptcy if at least 6 years has passed since the date the consumer was discharged from bankruptcy, unless the consumer has declared bankruptcy more than once;
    • information about a court judgment against the consumer if at least 6 years has passed since the date the judgment was given, unless the lender confirms that the debt has not been paid;
    • information about any conviction for a crime or about a summary conviction if at least 6 years has passed since the date of the consumer's conviction or, if the consumer was imprisoned, since the date of the consumer's release or parole. If the consumer was convicted but were granted a full pardon, no information about the conviction can be reported;
    • information about any debt if at least 6 years has passed since the date the consumer last made a payment on that debt or, if no payment has been made on that debt, since the date the debt was incurred;
    • information about any court action or proceeding begun against the consumer in the last year, unless the credit report includes the current status of the action or proceeding; and
    • information about a court judgment against the consumer, unless the name of the lender and the amount of the judgment are included.

    Under Saskatchewan's legislation, no one can get the consumer's credit report without:

    • a purpose that is allowed by the Act; and
    • either first receiving the consumer's consent or giving the consumer written notice that they will be getting a credit report about the consumer.

     

    Denials based on the consumer's credit report

    20(1) If a user of information contained in a credit report denies a benefit in whole or in part to a consumer, or increases the cost of the benefit to the consumer, as a result of information contained in a credit report respecting that consumer, the user shall provide written notice to the consumer of the denial or increase.

    (2) The user of information must give the notice mentioned in subsection (1):

    (a) within 30 days after making the decision; and
    (b) in person or by mail to the last known address of the consumer.

    (3) If the consumer makes a written request to the user within 60 days after receiving the notice, the user of the information must provide the consumer with the name and address of the credit reporting agency that provided the credit report.

    (4) The notice mentioned in subsection (1) must advise the consumer that the consumer can make the request mentioned in subsection (3).

     

    Release of personal information is restricted

    A credit reporting agency is allowed to release or reveal information contained in the consuner's file or give a credit report but only:

    • to the consumer;
    • to the person the application is made to when the consumer applied for credit, insurance, employment, tenancy or other eligibility under Canadian law;
    • to a person who intends to use the information in relation to collecting a debt the consumer owes;
    • for other legitimate business purposes, as authorized by the Act;
    • to update information in a credit report about the consumer that the person already has;
    • to any Canadian law enforcement agency for an investigation or prosecution;
    • to a person a court has ordered the information be given to;
    • to a person the consumer has identified in writing to the credit reporting agency; or
    • to any person the Act orders or directs must receive a credit report.

     

    Right to Review

    The consumer has the right to review the consumer's files and to be told whether the information has been given to anyone. The consumer also has the right to have the information contained in the consumer's credit report explained to the consumer and to make copies of that information. A credit reporting agency is not allowed to require the consumer to sign a waiver or release before the consumer can see the consumer's file.

    The consumer can contact any credit reporting agency, at no cost, to request a copy of the consumer's credit report.

     

    Statement of dispute

    If the consumer disagrees with the accuracy or completeness of any information in the consumer's credit report, the credit reporting agency must investigate. If the agency finds that the information is incorrect or cannot be confirmed, it must update or remove the information and notify the consumer and every person who has been given the consumer's credit report in the previous 12 months of the changes, unless the consumer requests that notification not be given.

    If the credit reporting agency determines that the file information is correct, the consumer can file a statement of dispute and the agency must then add this statement to the consumer's file. The statement will be shown every time someone requests information from the consumer's credit file. In addition, the credit reporting agency must provide a copy of the statement to anyone who received the consumer's credit report in the past 6 months, unless the consumer requests that a copy of the statement not be provided.

     

    Registrar’s order

    If the Registrar is of the opinion that any information contained in a file of a credit reporting agency is inaccurate, incomplete, or does not comply with this Act or the associated regulations, the Registrar may make an order doing any or all of the following:

    (a) directing the credit reporting agency to amend or delete any information in the file;

    (b) restricting or prohibiting the credit reporting agency from using any information in the file;

    (c) directing the credit reporting agency to provide notice of any amendment, deletion, restriction or prohibition made pursuant to clause (a) or (b) to any person who has received a credit report.

     

    Additional protections

    There are other pieces of legislation that offer personal information protection. These include the federal Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act, and the provincial acts: The Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act and The Health Information Protection Act. Visit the Government of Saskatchewan website for further information on the consumer's personal health information and privacy.

     

    Criminal Record Checks (CRC)

    If a commercial company provides a criminal record check service on a Saskatchewan resident, that company is required to be licensed in Saskatchewan as a Credit Reporting Agency.

    FCAA records indicate that the following companies, who may offer such a service, are licensed in Saskatchewan (listed alphabetically):

    Note to Readers: The listing above is provided for convenience only and is periodically updated. No endorsement or assessment of the firms’ services is made. Should other site administrators of Saskatchewan licensed agencies wish to be included in or deleted from the list above please contact our office. Listing is subject to approval.

    Consumer Protection Division

    Suite 500, 1919 Saskatchewan Drive

    Regina, Saskatchewan S4P 4H2

    Tel: (306)787-5550

    Toll free: (877)880-5550

    Fax: (306)787-9779

    Email: consumerprotection@gov.sk.ca

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