Report to Credit Bureau

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Liability of banks for improper reporting to credit bureaus A recent Alberta case underlines the need for bankers to make sure that they report duly on their debtor's creditworthiness, especially in contentious circumstances. At Parmar v. Royal Bank of Canada, Mr. Parmar filed a winning claim for monetary compensation in the form of a summative judgement allegedly based on a bank's incorrect credit report to TransUnion and Equifax.

First, Mr Parmar argued that he was not liable for a loan on his behalf. It was the bench claiming he was. Both operations were fully integrated and finally wound up and terminated, with Mr Parmar contributing USD 10 000 to the EIB. However, the subsequent period has seen the inaccurate reporting by the EIB of the nature of its claims against Mr Parmar against two credit bureaux, TransUnion and Equifax.

Mr Parmar argued that he had difficulties receiving or not receiving a credit because of incorrect coverage. Mr. Bennett instituted a new lawsuit against the banks and credit cooperatives and demanded compensation. Claiming that his chances of ownership in Canada had "been mortally wounded", he filed a motion for expedited proceedings for compensation.

The Court found in recital 14 of the judgment that the Court of First Instance acknowledged that the case constituted an untypical circumstance which constituted'a particular challenge' for the'normal and characteristic methods and system of the institution to precisely report and record Parmar's debts outstanding'. Unfortunately, the EIB did not immediately revise its own notes, but (erroneously) kept Mr Parmar's arrears under the hypothec, which was properly notified by the credit bureau.

Admittedly, the bank's coverage was imprecise. The Court acknowledged that the abnormal circumstances presented the Banks with difficulties in relation to financial disclosure, but this did not release them from responsibility. Court found that in a summative judgement and under the Alberta Fair Trading Act, the Court held the defendant accountable to Mr. Parmar for $5,000 in trouble arising from the bank's inability to report precisely and promptly to creditors.

Requests for a summative ruling against the credit cooperatives were rejected as both posed real earnings problems that require litigation.

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