$175 parking ticket led to nearly $2m in lost profits, mortgage specialist claims

BIV's lawsuit of the week


A self-described Vancouver mortgage specialist is suing collection agency Collectcents Inc., claiming a report to a credit bureau over a disputed $175 parking ticket ended up costing him nearly $2 million in lost profits tied to a Calgary property development.

Alex Khalil filed a notice of civil claim in BC Supreme Court against Collectcents Inc. on January 21. Khalil, who is representing himself, claims he got a parking ticket from the City of Vancouver in June 2018. He claims he unsuccessfully disputed the ticket before an adjudicator at a hearing in September 2018.

“The adjudicator was not impartial and in fact the adjudicator specifically declined to properly weigh or consider evidence nor did the adjudicator meet the threshold of natural justice,” Khalil’s claim states. “Following said hearing, the plaintiff made many attempts at obtaining from the City a copy of the hearing transcripts as well as details of the appeals process for which the city clerk indicated was available to appeal a decision of an adjudicator.”

Later, the city issued a bylaw violation notice for Khalil to pay even though he was appealing the ticket. He claims he put the city “on notice” that it was “delinquent” in providing requested information and claims that collection attempts violated the Business Practices and Consumer Protection Act.

“Despite such notice and caution, the City engaged the defendant on its behalf to pursue collection remedies against the plaintiff,” the claim states.

Khalil claims Collectcents then reported him to Equifax for the alleged $175 debt, which lowered his credit score from 707 to 601. At the time, Khalil claims he was a partner in a Calgary property development project and had been conditionally approved for a $21.9 million credit facility from non-party MCAP Mortgage Corp. related to the financing of the project. The money “was contingent on the plaintiff’s credit score being equal to or greater than 680,” the claim states.

“Upon discover and due diligence, MCAP discovered the plaintiff’s credit rating was below the required threshold, and as such, cancelled the approval for said credit facility,” Khalil claims. “Without said credit facliity, the plaintiff is unable to participate in said development project.”

Khalil seeks orders directing credit agencies to remove Collectcents’ report from his score, a judgment of $1,906,000, equal to his estimated share of profits from the Calgary property development, and $100,000 in punitive damages. Khalil’s allegations have not been tested or proven in court and Collectcents had not filed a response to the claim by press time.