Deposits with Wells Fargo Bank, National Association, Canadian Branch are not insured by the Canada Deposit Insurance Corporation.
In compliance with the Support Orders and Support Provisions (Banks and Authorized Foreign Banks) Regulations, Wells Fargo Bank, N.A., Canadian Branch has designated the following offices for the service of enforcement notices in respect of the below noted provinces.
Province of Alberta
308 4th Ave SW, Suite 2711
Calgary, AB T2P 0H7
Province of British Columbia
200 Burrard Street, Suite 330
Vancouver, BC V6C 3L6
Province of Ontario
40 King Street West, Suite 3200
Toronto, ON M5H 3Y2
Province of Quebec
1250 Rene-Levesque Blvd West, Suite 1100
Montreal, Quebec H3B 4W8
The Bank Act requires banks to inform customers in plain language that coercive tied selling is illegal. To comply with the law, Wells Fargo Bank, N.A., and its wholly-owned subsidiaries and Wells Fargo Bank, N.A., Canadian Branch has created this web page explaining what coercive tied selling is.
What is coercive tied selling?
Section 576.1 of the Bank Act prohibits banks from practicing coercive tied selling. It is against the law for a bank to "impose undue pressure on, or coerce a person to obtain a product or service from a particular person, including the bank and any of its affiliates, as a condition for obtaining another product or service from the bank." Customers cannot be unduly pressured to buy a product or service that they do not want from a bank or one of its affiliates, to obtain another bank product or service.
The following is an example that helps to explain coercive tied selling and what is not allowed.
Your bank's mortgage specialist tells you that you qualify for a home mortgage. However, you are also told that the bank will approve your mortgage only if you transfer your investments to the bank or its affiliates. You want the mortgage, but you do not want to move your investments.
You are advised that you qualify for a Registered Retirement Savings Plan (RRSP) loan. However, you are also told that the bank will approve the loan only if you use the money to buy the bank's mutual funds. You want the loan, but you want to invest the money elsewhere.
The above practice is against the law. A banking representative is not allowed to excessively pressure you to buy another unwanted product or service as a condition of obtaining the product you want.
What is not coercive tied selling?
Most businesses, including Wells Fargo Bank N.A., Canadian Branch look for tangible ways to show their interest in your business and appreciation for your loyalty. Sales practices, such as preferential pricing and bundling of products and services, offer potential and existing customers better prices or more favourable terms. These practices should not be confused with coercive tied selling, as defined by the Bank Act. Many of these practices will be familiar to you in your dealings with other businesses.
Preferential pricing means offering customers a better price or rate on all or part of their business. For example, a printer offers a lower price for each business card if you buy a thousand cards instead of a hundred. A shoe store offers a second pair of shoes at half price.
Similarly, a bank may be able to offer you preferential pricing — a higher interest rate on investments or a lower interest rate on loans — if you use more of its products or services. The following two examples will help to explain preferential pricing in banks.
After approving your application for a home mortgage from the bank, your bank's mortgage specialist tells you that this mortgage would be available at a lower interest rate if you transferred your investments to the bank or its affiliates.
After approving your application for an RRSP loan, your bank's credit officer offers you a lower interest rate if you use the loan to buy the bank's mutual funds.
The above practices are acceptable. The approval of your mortgage and RRSP loan is not conditional on your taking another bank product or service. Rather you are offered preferential pricing to encourage you to give the bank more business.
What is bundling of products and services?
Products or services are often combined to give consumers better prices, incentives or more favourable terms. By linking or bundling their products or services, businesses are often able to offer them to you at a lower combined price than if you bought each product on its own. For example, a fast-food chain advertises a meal combination that includes a hamburger, fries and a drink. The overall price is lower than if you bought the three items separately.
Similarly, banks may offer you bundled financial services or products so that you can take advantage of package prices that are less than the sum of the individual items. The following example will help to explain the bundling of bank products and services.
You plan to open a bank account that charges you for individual transactions. The banking representative offers you a package of services that includes a comparable bank account, a credit card with no annual fee and a discount on purchasing traveller's cheques. The total price for the package is less than if you purchased each part of the package separately.
Bundling products in this way is permitted because you have the choice of buying the items individually or in a package.
Who to contact with questions or complaints
Customers with questions, concerns or complaints about Wells Fargo Bank, N.A., Canadian Branch ("Wells Fargo Canada Branch") should take the following steps:
First, customers should contact their Wells Fargo Canada Branch Relationship Manager with respect to questions or concerns regarding any Wells Fargo Canada Branch product, service or account.
Customers with concerns that remain unresolved following consultation with their Relationship Manager may contact the Wells Fargo Canada Branch Complaints Liaison and provide all pertinent information:
Wells Fargo Bank, N.A., Canadian Branch
40 King Street West, Suite 3200
Toronto, ON M5H 3Y2
Toll-free telephone: 1-866-876-8688
If, within 90 days of the Wells Fargo Canada Branch Complaints Liaison review, you are not satisfied with the resolution of your complaint, you may contact the Ombudsman for Banking Services and Investments.
Ombudsman for Banking Services and Investments
401 Bay Street
Suite 1505, P.O. Box 5
Toronto, Ontario M5H 2Y4
Toll-free telephone: 1-888-451-4519
Toll-free fax: 1-888-422-2865
Toronto area telephone: 416-287-2877
Toronto area fax: 416-225-4722
Web site: www.obsi.ca
For reasons of confidentiality and security, do not send confidential information via email.
In the complaints handling process for Canadian financial institutions, including Wells Fargo Canada Branch, the Financial Consumer Agency of Canada is responsible for ensuring that all financial institutions comply with federal consumer legislation and will investigate any complaint or concern that relates to a possible breach of that legislation.
Financial Consumer Agency of Canada
Enterprise Building, 6th Floor
427 Laurier Avenue
West Ottawa, ON K1R 1B9
© 2015 Wells Fargo Bank, N.A., Canadian Branch. All rights reserved.
As required by the Complaints (Banks, Authorized Foreign Banks and External Complaints Bodies) Regulations SOR/2013-48, Wells Fargo Bank, N.A., Canadian Branch confirms that did not receive any complaints in 2016.
Voluntary codes of conduct are non-legislated commitments, voluntarily made by companies, associations and other organizations to influence or control behaviour, for the benefit of both themselves and their communities. Voluntary codes and commitments can address the needs of consumers, workers, and citizens while helping companies remain competitive.
The banking industry has developed and is committed to voluntary codes designed to protect consumers. The Model Code of Conduct for Bank Relations with Small- and Medium-Sized Businesses is applicable to Wells Fargo Bank, N.A., Canadian Branch.
Model Code of Conduct for Bank Relations with Small- and Medium-Sized Businesses (1994) (PDF) — Model code of conduct for bank dealings with small- and medium-sized businesses. The key elements of the model code are incorporated into individual bank codes.
The information posted on this web site is for information purposes only. This information does not constitute (i) an offer, invitation or recommendation to purchase or sell, nor a solicitation of an offer to buy, any product or service to any person in any jurisdiction or to dispose or acquire assets, (ii) an opinion, invitation or recommendation to enter into a transaction, including, without limitation, any public or private offering of product or service, nor (iii) any form of legal, financial, investment or tax advice, opinion or recommendation. Recipients are entirely responsible for making their own decision to purchase or sell product or service or enter into an investment transaction. The information posted here is not intended to form the basis of any future or present contract or arrangement or a fiduciary relationship with, or fiduciary duty to, the recipient. This information is subject to change without notice and does not purport to be comprehensive or contain all the information necessary to evaluate the subject matter discussed here. No representation, warranty or undertaking, express or implied, is or will be made or given and no responsibility or liability is or will be accepted in relation to the accuracy or completeness of this information made available here. Any responsibility or liability for any such information is expressly disclaimed.