Receivable/Accounts - Information for Credit and Collection Issues

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

How Long Is A Debt Good For? Part IV: Manitoba



Many questions often arise about the age of a debt, and what can be done, especially when it comes to bad debt write-off, collections, the credit bureau, or legal action. Each Province has its own statute of limitation on legal action. These vary from province to province.
As the next article in our series, we will address the province of Manitoba.


The Limitation of Actions Act of Manitoba

Unlike many provinces that have a two-year limitation for the collection of a debt, the Limitation of Actions Act in Manitoba allow six years for “actions of the recovery of money”.  This means that legal action can be commenced after six years.

Judgments are enforceable for either ten years, or the period allowed for a judgment originating in another province, whichever is the shorter period applicable.

As many of the other provinces state, a period where the creditor is disabled suspends the limitation period for the time of disability.  Manitoba defines disability as either being a minor or being unable to manage their own affairs due to a physical or mental condition.
As many other provinces state, the limitation period can begin again by a written acknowledgement of a judgment or debt, or a partial payment of that debt, regardless if the written notice includes a dispute or refutation of the debt, or does not include a promise to pay.


There are other specific exceptions under the Limitation of Actions Act, including dealing with matters involving land, trustees, fraud, or fatal accidents.
Regardless of extensions or suspension of the period of limitation, Manitoba’s act clearly puts an ultimate limit of 30 years on a judgment or debt.


If you would like to examine the actual Limitation of Actions Act, or review more specific cases or exceptions dealt with in the Act itself, it can be found here:

http://web2.gov.mb.ca/laws/statutes/ccsm/l150e.php


The Credit Bureau

The rules surrounding credit reporting and consumer rights in Manitoba is more obscure and less publicized than in other provinces.  The rules surrounding the credit bureau in this province are addressed by the Personal Investigations Act.


As many provinces list debts and judgments for six years, Manitoba is no exception, “unless voluntarily supplied by the subject”.
This Act can be found here:

http://web2.gov.mb.ca/laws/statutes/ccsm/p034e.php  


How Does My Credit Rating Work?

Regardless of what province you live in, you have a right to understand how the credit bureau works, and what rights you have surrounding your credit bureau.  Recently, our blog had an article directed at consumers on understanding the credit bureau here:

http://receivableaccounts.blogspot.ca/2012/02/your-credit-bureau-file.html

For further information, the Financial Consumer Agency of Canada has a website and publication to build consumer awareness surrounding issues involving credit reporting and the credit bureau.  This website link addresses many concerns and common questions regarding the credit bureau, and is an excellent educational document.  It can be found here:

http://www.fcac-acfc.gc.ca/eng/resources/publications/budgetMoneyMgmt/CreditReportScore/CreditReportScoreTOC-eng.asp


Conclusion

In this day and age, credit reports are a central tool to acquiring, using, and suspending credit privileges of consumers.  Every consumer should make themselves aware of what their credit report looks like, and consistently request a copy of their credit bureau file every year, to ensure their information is accurate.

As always, if you have any questions regarding credit reporting, or the rights and responsibilities of consumers or creditors, you are certainly welcome to contact myself.

Blair Wettlaufer
Kingston Data and Credit
Cambridge, Ontario
226-444-5695
http://www.kingstondc.com/
bwettlaufer@kingstondc.com