Credit check to open a personal deposit account

Settled case summary #5


An individual complained that a bank inappropriately required him to consent to a credit check when he attempted to apply on-line for a no-fee personal deposit account. He was also concerned about some of the other information he was required to provide, namely, length of employment and his social insurance number (SIN). In his view, the language of the application form describing what information will be exchanged with the credit bureaux and when it will be exchanged was unclear.


The bank agreed to modify the language of its on-line account application forms. Applicants will be informed that if they do not want the bank to obtain credit report information, they can apply for a deposit account in person. The length of employment will only be required of applicants applying for credit, and the provision of the SIN will be optional. The bank was also reviewing the language on the form that describes what information will be exchanged with the credit bureaux and when. Finally, our Office confirmed, as per the complainant's request, that his credit rating was not affected by his application for a personal deposit account.

Both the complainant and the Office were satisfied with the bank's actions.

The complaint was settled during the course of the investigation in November 2004.

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