When you walk out of the grocery store, nothing is going right. You cannot pay the bill. All your cards are blocked. By calling your bank, you are told that your account has been frozen. There is an investigation because there will be suspicious transactions. You do not have access to any liquidity and it is not known how long the investigation will continue.
This situation recently happened to Mr. Amoussou of Gatineau. His funds were frozen for a week.
Do financial institutions have the right to block access to your funds if you are a victim of fraud?
There is no law or regulation in Canada regulating bank account freezing, the Federation of Canadian Bankers asserts in invoice. So organizations can decide to freeze an account or credit card as a precaution to protect funds and avoid losses for customers and themselves.
Each of the financial institutions has its own arrangements, but their association ensures that they are all working with their clients to minimize any negative impact as much as possible.
Financial institutions tell us that they offer alternatives so as not to leave you without resources. For example, at Desjardins, you can go to the cashier in person with identification documents to quickly make a withdrawal or send a new credit card.
In Mr. Amoso’s case, his funds were frozen for a week, while his bank was examining why his address did not match the area of his branch. In fact, Mr. Amos had just moved on, but he chose to maintain his links with his old branch. Be aware that such situations can cause delays.
journalist : Francois Sanche
Research journalist : Melissa Pelletier
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