Credit reports: your rights
Credit bureaus operating in Nova Scotia must be licensed and follow the rules set out in the Consumer Reporting Act. The act outlines your rights in relation to consumer or credit reports.
By law, credit bureaus must ensure the information they hold is accurate. They can only share the information with authorized recipients, and must provide consumers with access to the information.
Consumer reporting agencies create and maintain credit reports. They collect information from various sources, like banks, credit card companies, mortgage companies and other creditors. In Nova Scotia, there are 2 main credit bureaus:
- Equifax Canada
- TransUnion Canada
Who can request a copy
By law, consumer reporting agencies must get your consent before they can share a copy of your report. They can provide a copy of your credit report to:
- lenders and creditors
- insurance companies
- potential employers
Companies, landlords, and employers may want to use your credit report to assess the risks of lending you money, or to evaluate your financial behaviour.
While the law requires credit bureaus to hold and distribute only accurate information about a consumer's credit, it is often up to the consumer to make sure this is the case.
It’s good practice to request a copy of your credit report from both Equifax and TransUnion once a year. Credit Bureaus are required to give you a free copy of this report if you request it by mail or in person.
If you’re concerned that a credit bureau is not following these rules, you can contact the Department of Service Nova Scotia and Internal Services.