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Credit Check Superthread- Merged Topics

R is the term used on the Equifax printout, I believe the other large credit check company Trans Unions uses “E” but basically the numbers are the same the higher the number the worse it is.

Everyone should check their credit history with Equifax and/or Trans Canada Credit on a regular basis



I read Equifaxes daily and there is a fair bit of info there, but it’s all from third party sources, banks, credit cards, utility companies, cell phone providers etc. who in turn use it to determine if you’re a good or bad credit risk. If they incorrectly put something down then it’s there until corrected. Equifax won’t do that until you get them too.

Small errors in your teens on a cell phone bill may come back to haunt your 10-15 years later when you apply for a mortgage.

RO is actually not good either, as it shows you have no credit history. I would suggest starting to build a credit history, responsibly early on. get and use a credit card and pay iot off each and every month the whole ammount, not just the balance due. You'll build credit history, and learn money management skills. Cell phone and ISP also help you build credit history, until one is old enough to statrt gettign the big ticke titms, house, condo, car etc. If you can't budget then you don't need or want a Gold Card. The idea her is to never find yourself needing credit counselling serivces.

The new prepaid load and use credit cards advertised on TV now (much music?) would be a good option to help teenagers develop a good credit rating and responsible use.

Oh yeah before anyone asks mine is R1 and has been so for over 20 years. 8)
if i knew about pre-paid for i got my mastercard, i woulda done that, mom even has one and she loves it.
formerarmybrat23 said:
my boyfriend has the worst credit R1 rating, plus most of his old debt is in collections. All he was told to do is get his creditor to write a note that he was making efforts to repay his bad debts.  A search of the forums will probably dig up more info, as you are certainly not the first to have this trouble. Good luck! :D

I think you mean R9...  an R1 is a perfect rating. (as mentioned by recceguy) Also, note that these ratings are PER creditor, and are based generally on the Creditor's discretion.....  your overall rating is actually a score,  usually under the FICO methodology, and most Canadians have a 700 or higher.  FICO scores consider how long you have had the accounts, the ratio of balance to limit on each account,  payment history (the R/E ratings), credit inquiries (how often you request credit), etc.  Potential creditors then factor in your housing costs, standard base values for cost of living, total current debt to income ratios, and then come back with a number.

Often all of this is done automatically by the bank's system, in some cases banks automatically approve everyone with a certain FICO score, and automatically decline everyone with another one.

visit www.equifax.ca

just to help you out, i work in a bank in the Mastercard department and "Meridian" has the correct info, evrytime you pay your bills on time it's noted as R1, even if you pay a couple of days late it's still R1, were I work we don't even send infoto equifax before your 60 days late, so don't sweat it if you missed a month once, just don't make a habit of missing months .....anyways to get back to your credit rating, it's a number, the canadian average is about 680 to 760, everything including payment, debt %, number of credit requests, etc affects your credit, and stays on your credit for 7 years. So if you missed a couple payments 8 years ago it dosn't even show up.

hopes this helps everyone out, feel free to ask more questions
I have really really bad credit right now, and I noticed the cedit check on the "Personnel Screening, Consent and Authorization Form". I'm wondering if this is a pass/fail thing or if I might be able to squeak by with an excuse for it. The last company I worked for went out of business while I had 3 credit cards on the go. There wasn't really much I could do. Instead of getting another full-time job, I went back to school. Anyways, if anyone knows anything about this, I'd appreciate a few posts. Thanks...
Welcome to Milnet.ca.

Your question has been asked and discussed many times.  Please use the search function.

The links below will take you to some other threads on the subject.  Use "Credit" as a search term in the Recruiting forum.  LOTs of reading for you.


This thread is locked.

Roy Harding
Milnet.ca Staff

Edited to fix links
Hello, I searched some of the other threads, but didn't quite find anything specific enough to answer my question, so here goes...

I can only assume I have a poor credit rating. I have not checked it, but a bill collector was after me for quite some time trying to collect a credit card bill that I defaulted on. I also defaulted on two other credit cards, but they never called very much, just the one. I used the money to go to school, because I couldn't afford it otherwise, and I tried to pay them off but I just couldn't and fell so far behind I defaulted.

The total amounts are such that I have begun saving money to pay them off. I owe $2000 some on the first card, and maybe $1000 each on the other two, tops.

I want to apply for an officer's position. Maybe CELE or similar.

I already have an Enhanced Reliability check, because I worked (as a student) for a federal government department. I got this check in late 2004.

My question is, what is going to happen to me if I apply, and what should I do to ensure my application is successful? I want to get in ASAP, but I don't want to fail the credit check. I don't have enough money saved up to pay off the bill collectors yet either. I have saved up only about $1000.

Will the CF still do an ER check? Will they do some secret clearance check and do another credit check at that time? What exactly will happen...

The credit cards are from like 2002/2003-ish.

Thanks for your advice.
I just went through this, so I guess I have some good knowledge on the Situation.

I do not know if the reliability status process is different for NCMS or Officers but I will tell you what I know. Due to my not great credit history (much like you, 3 cards in collections) My credit history was not sufficient enough to grant me reliable. What I had to do was put together a package and send it to the CFRC requesting a waiver on my reliability status, my interviewer discussed all this with me during my interview, have you had yours?

He said he didn't need everything paid off, just shown to be currently under control and manageable. So I called all my creditors, settled what I could, and made payment arrangements with the rest. Had them all fax me confirmation of such and wrote up a professional letter stating the request and outlining my debts, including when they incurred, why they incurred, and how I was taking care of them now. I enclosed all the correspondence I received as validation.

My request was approved yesterday and I am now able to be granted reliability status. If you have not had your interview yet then perhaps start on this process now, I feel confident that during your interview it will come up. The CF sees bad debt, or rather un-managed debt as irresponsible and unreliable. Good luck to you though, if this is what you have to do, you can contact me for futher advice if you wish, if this does not apply than I am sorry.

JBoyd gave you an answer. Any other questions about it should be addressed to the Recruiter for the proper, no  mistake answer. There's also bags of stuff about this in the Recruiting Forum. It just takes some time and effort to find and read it. I suggest you use the first two and accomplish the latter.


Milnet.ca Staff
Ok i know there have been alot of questions regarding this stuff so i will make it short and sweet. I am in the midst of filling for going bankcrupt i am 34years old and i have had a full-time job for 10 years and i am married with kids, i  own my house but in the past i was over extended credit and i want to join up will this affect me getting in?
Thanks for any info you can give..
as far as I know - your bankruptcy should be discharged before you join.  not the 7 years or whatever, but once the payments to your trustee are finished they'll discharge it.  takes about 6-7 months
VALETGUY5242 said:
Ok i know there have been alot of questions regarding this stuff so i will make it short and sweet. I am in the midst of filling for going bankcrupt i am 34years old and i have had a full-time job for 10 years and i am married with kids, i  own my house but in the past i was over extended credit and i want to join up will this affect me getting in?
Thanks for any info you can give..
Here, they can give you a more definative answer


Let me set the scenerio, I know i have bad debt but i have increased my score over the last year by 100 points. 

Knowing this I pulled my credit report and found out what was on it and called all my creditors and found a company to de a debt managment program ( very good company if anybody needs one pm me Ontario)

So i set up everything and paid off what i could about 3 bills totaling around $1500, i got letters of clearance from all debtors and made a folder.  In the folder i put in the letters of clearance, my credit report and my signed agreement from the Debt Counsellor along with a letter stating the conditions and requirments of the program.

I went to my interview and my MOC asked if there was anything i wanted to talk about before we started, i said yes and started to talk about my credit.  Turns out when they did my credit check they found 7 things that needed to be talked about and of those i had paid 3 the previous week hence the letters.  One was to be paid on Monday and the other 3 were in my agreement.  I was told that the effort that i had put in to address my credit prior was of an excellent nature and she saw no reason to put a show stopper on for my credit.  The MOC said that i had a great drive to clear up my bad debt and that went along way..

So with that i was granted Security Clearance and now just waiting for an offer.

Just a bit of useful information, if you know you have a credit issue, pull your credit reports and address the issues BEFORE you go and get the letters of clearance as they will copy them and it helps you bulid a strong case saying that you have had a bad time in your life and are trying to fix it.

And always be prepared for the unexpected. 
Speaking on this issue, I was seriously worried going into my selection proccess. I have many debts( jeep, credit cards etc...) I have int the past been late on a couple of things and was worried about my debt load being an issue. All told I owe around 30,000 in debt. This was not an issue at all and my ERC went though mosh cosh and had no problems. My advice, make sure everything is paid up to date about 3 months before you join, contact your creditors and find your standing with them then hope for the best. 
Good on you for clearing things up in record time.  I am positive it wasn't easy

BTW... The credit score thing has to do with our "reliability" check
NOThing to do with Security clearance.
When you get your interview stage, does that mean the candidate has passed the credit check?

Also, when you do your security check, is it true that CSIS says " yay" or " nay"?

You don't have to make a new thread for each question you have.. consolodate in one thread.. also search. You aren't the first person to have this question. An again, why don't you an others ask questions when you are at the CFRC?
If I did my interview and my file is being sent to Ottawa, does that mean that I passed my credit check?
Not necessarily. After my lengthy application period, I received a call 3 days before I received my offer (which was just over 2 months from when I had my interview, and 8 months from when all of my paperwork was submitted properly ie Back check and 330-60e) from a 2lt inquiring about a debt on my credit report from 2004. I explained the debt to him and that it had been paid off (as part of an ERC waiver process from 2007) he said okay and that he was processing a waiver for my ERC.

It seems to me that it is possible that you can still be asked about your credit history up until you received your offer. I suggest you search the site on more topics regarding ERC and ERC Waivers if you are worried about your credit history
Normally, as long as you prove you are making payments, it's usually not a problem.

The CF has good reason not to enroll people who have administrative or financial problems as these issues may disrupt the person's training schedule if they are required in court, etc.

If I were you, I'd be more worried about the fact that you have several speeding and parking infractions.

Ensure you let the recruiters know your situation.