Monday, September 11, 2006

Only in Ontario you say?

Dalton McGuinty and Co. are very big on banning pitbulls and smoking (but not cigarettes) .

But when it comes to home identity theft, the rap on the knuckles is going to cost a whole $50,000 now max (up from a fine of only $1000!).

The Toronto Sun's Linda Leatherdale (Too Little; Too Late) is calling for much tougher measures, such as minimum jail sentences.

Many Ontario residents will be shocked to learn how easy it has been up until now for their homes to be stolen by means of fraudulent Powers of Attorney and various other methods of identity theft. Linda however, seems to be suggesting that McGuinty has wimped out yet again. I would tend to agree.

* * * *

UPDATE: The folly of trusting the 'Nanny State': Read it and weep. (Tuesday Star) - "Property Fraud Reforms only Tinkering: Victims".

Is there anyone in Ontario who honestly still thinks that this government is doing a good job? I would love to hear from you! Please educate me. Thanks.


PGP said...

Weak response to serious problems is the trademark of liberals.

Although I don't think this particular issue is the responsibility of the provinces alone. It is the responsibility of the provincial administrations to manage and control their registries effectively.
Criminal fraud should be a federal crime and the penalties severe when the impacts are so devastating to the victims.
These victims should be able to sue the land titles and courts for failing to safeguard their personal property and critical information.
Although this will end up costing the taxpayers the fallout from such cost would assure that the elected governments would be more proactive in dealing with the issue.

There is no point in narrowing the offence down to the method or the specifics of the crime. The crime is FRAUD.
I think we need to establish property rights and the rights of property owners in our laws and deal with infringements on those rights with the same severity as we should do in criminal assaults.

Joanne (True Blue) said...

I think we need to establish property rights and the rights of property owners in our laws

I agree.

Correct me in I'm wrong, but aren't property rights an issue that the Conservatives are very interested in? I heard that property rights are actually not guaranteed under the Charter. Does anyone else have information on that? Thanks.

Party member CPC said...

Quote from the Conservative party of Canada Policy Declaration under section C)DEMOCRATIC REFORM

13. Property Rights
i)A Conservative Government will seek the agreement of the provinces to amend the Constitution to include this right...

Joanne (True Blue) said...

Wow. Ask and you shall receive. Thank you very much, party member.

Now how would this affect property rights? Would that be in relation to government expropriation and that type of thing? (eg. when a city wishes to build a highway and buys out all the properties in their path with "fair market" value?

liberal supporter said...

In the US, there is a debate going on about "eminent domain". Municipalities expropriating neighbourhoods so a Walmart can be built "for the good of the community".

As far as I can tell, they do have property rights in their Constitution (by amendments), yet this eminent domain stuff is going on.

Obviously, people should not be paying to get their fraudulently stolen title back. Land title is different from all other property, usually fraud costs are only recovered by suit, but the whole point of land titles was that you cannot be easily kicked off your land, except subject to a mortgage (charge) registered there.

Do these people come home to find the sheriff has changed the locks? It sounds like the fraud involves fraudulent powers of attorney. That needs to be tightened up too.

PGP said...

Property rights do not necessarily protect owners from fraud but if protected properly would make it necessary for municipalities and provinces to better regulate the registries. As things stand now there is too little onus on the municipality or province to respect or protect the property owner.

Mostly the property rights that are discussed are aimed at recognizing the Right to Own real property and the subsequent protection against unwarranted or unrightfull encroachments.

Unbelievable that in this country we do not have a protection that says you are the rightfull owner of a real property and that your right to own and use that property are protected under the law.

The ability of various governments to restrict use or to expropriate is too broad and needs to be restricted. IMO

Fergy said...

To change the Criminal Code is of course Federal Government.

Fraud is fraud. How many people go their blithe way bouncing cheques and considering it a necessary evil. It's fraud intentional and otherwise, and needs to be enforced.

The biggest problem is enforcement. You need to be a cop , a chartered account and a forensic specialist to catch these people.

Consider the loss of a $300,000 home it would easily cost double that or more to convict and the offender wopuld still only get a $50,000 slap on the wrist, for wrecking someones lives?

Either full, and I include lawyers and Police and experts and court cost should be exacted and/or serious jail time. There is no such thing as a victimless crime.

Joanne (True Blue) said...

Fergy, it sounds like you are in complete agreement with Ms. Leatherdale. It seems then that this is something that both levels of government must act on, but somehow the Ontario government is the one to set the fine? I must be missing something here.

PGP says It is the responsibility of the provincial administrations to manage and control their registries effectively.
Criminal fraud should be a federal crime and the penalties severe when the impacts are so devastating to the victims.

I just want to know that nobody can steal my house!

Daristotle said...

I hadn't heard about the power of attourney method. The method I knew about involved the criminal getting enough personal information (bank account numbers, credit card numbers, drivers licence, etc.) to pose as the owner and put a mortgage on the property. When the mortgage is not paid, then the sherrif does come calling.

Daristotle said...

Not only in Ontario. US congress is considering a bill to limit putting a freeze on the issuing of credit reports to victems of identity theft. It seems that the think you shoulkd only have to go through once. See story at Bankrate .com.

PGP said...

I see this going into another area of "Rights" one which I completely support and hope to see action in.
Personal Information has been blithely and blindly entrusted to a large variety of instituions, employers and all levels of government. As things stand the individual has no rights to limit or protect the use of personal info by any of these entities. The result is the explosion of fraud and theft from criminals who have gained access to systems or simply take advantage of public domain sources.

The public needs to know who has what info on them and have the right to limit or deny use of that information by anyone they choose to restrict.

liberal supporter said...

There is PIPEDA for protecting personal information:

But typically there are standard boilerplate provisions in any loan application allowing them to share credit information with anyone. I don't know if PIPEDA stops this.

Joanne (True Blue) said...

Thanks for that, L.S.

All I know is that the criminals seem to be doing what they want, no matter what the laws are.

Riley Hennessey said...

The thing i hate about fines is that if you can't pay them, you plead bancruptcy and off ya go.

So if you are busy doing identity theft, you likely aren't rich enough to pay 50 grand. So you plead bancruptcy and off ya go to the next one.

For crime, there must be appropriate punishment. I just don't GET why gov't dont see that.

PGP said...

My brother in law in Oshawa!
Thinks McGuinty is great...predicts another term with a plurality for the Libs in Ontario...I think he's right about the second part.
He also predicts Ontario will return all the federal Liberals from the province in the next that's scary!

Joanne (True Blue) said...

PGP, that is the most depressing thing I have ever heard. What does he use for evidence, or is it a gut feeling? (My gut is heaving right now.)

PGP said...

Well I did not mean to upset you..truth be told I think he's still fuming over our last argument ( Caledonia).....but he works at home office and spends a fair amount of time in the Torstar, mop&pail and other MSM .Thinks the Tories are the biggest threat to human existence ever and believes 90% of what he reads
His background is a dipper family and I rate the label of "neo-con" which he uses as an expletive.

Joanne (True Blue) said...

I rate the label of "neo-con" which he uses as an expletive.

I'd love to be a fly on the wall at family get-togethers!

Joanne (True Blue) said...

BTW, tell your bro-in-law to read this Star article!

liberal supporter said...

Ha ha! "mop&pail" Never heard that one.

I will only read the TorStar under duress, though I do look at the headline as I pass the box in the morning.

I was annoyed with screaming headline "general says we can't defeat the taliban", then on 680news I heard the problem was needing more troops. Of course the sun was low key with "need more troops" several pages in.

Are there any aid/development types being sent along with the 120 troops and 15 tanks?

PGP said...

Thanks Jo.....
Gwyn's got some good points but I get the sense that he's allmost admitting these observations with a grudging tone? Like his heart's not really in the idea that Canadians can be supportive of military action and that we can be successful at it.

Fly on the Wall?

Your ears would burn.....not allways though...bro'nlaw is a good guy. Just sometimes can't get past the BS he reads and down to facts.
And to tell the truth he does get a lot of info on issues that I've never known. Got to give credit where it's due you know.

PGP said...

In the Levy article from the Star....
The comment in the piece :
""I don't see why I should be one cent out of pocket," she said. "It's not my fault. The bank is responsible for handing out mortgages without due diligence."" is bang on!
This is one of the areas where property rights need to be addressed.
As things stand now the lenders and others with legal protections such as insurers and lawyers will not be held accountable for losses such as this. Even if they clearly fail to perform the very same checks that you or I would have to go through in our own realty transactions.

They get to say "I was lied to so its not my fault".....
The legal property owner and victim of fraud should have every right to sue for complete reimbursement of all losses and costs and that should include compensation for trauma and damage to ones reputation and credit standings.

And above and beyond the compensation to the legal owner and victim the perps should be jailed for 10 years minimum.

kelly said...

PGP: I agree! A fine isn't going to deter a crook. Jail time at least gets them off the streets.