Handling of a complaint by the BAnQ Ombudsman

Receiving a complaint

Within five days of receiving a complaint, the Ombudsman notifies in writing the division involved in the complaint and asks them to send a copy of the complete record of the complaint as it was originally submitted and processed by BAnQ.

If necessary, the Ombudsman can obtain additional information, either from the patron or from one of BAnQ's executive directors. As needed, the Ombudsman can request a meeting with the patron and BAnQ representatives. The Ombudsman takes into consideration oral and written observations that are communicated to him, both by the patron and the BAnQ executive director involved in the complaint and, if applicable, by the Chair and Chief Executive Officer.

Upon receiving a complaint, the Ombudsman will examine whether it is admissible and well-founded, based on BAnQ's Statement of services to the public and any other BAnQ policies or rules.


Rejecting a complaint

Upon summary examination, the Ombudsman can dismiss any complaint that he deems to be frivolous, persecutory or made in bad faith. He can also refuse or cease to examine a complaint in any of the following situations:

  • if there is sufficient reason to believe that his intervention would clearly serve no purpose;
  • if the time elapsed between the events that caused the complainant's dissatisfaction and the lodging of the complaint makes it impossible to examine the complaint;
  • if more than a year has passed since the complainant received the reasoned conclusions from the BAnQ division involved, or since the date on which negative conclusions were alleged to have been sent to the complainant, unless the complainant demonstrates to the Ombudsman that it was impossible for him to act.

In cases such as these, the Ombudsman informs the complainant in writing of his reasons for refusing to intervene, and he then closes the file.


Handling an admissible complaint

In the case of an admissible complaint, the Ombudsman verifies whether all internal avenues of recourse have been explored. If this is not the case, he identifies the mechanisms at the complainant's disposal and invites the complainant to make use of those mechanisms.

If all internal avenues of recourse have been exhausted, the Ombudsman investigates and intercedes with the BAnQ division that is in a position to carry out the appropriate corrective measures.

Once his intervention is complete, the Ombudsman closes the file.

Within 30 days of receiving a recommendation made to them by the Ombudsman, the BAnQ division involved in the complaint must inform the Ombudsman in writing, as well as the complainant, of the action it intends to take on the recommendation or, if it does not intend to take any action, of the reason for its decision not to do so.

If after making a recommendation to BAnQ, the Ombudsman deems that no satisfactory action has been taken or if the decision to not follow up is unsatisfactory, he may so notify, in writing, the Chair and Chief Executive Officer. If he believes it is appropriate, the Ombudsman can outline the case in his annual report or in a special report to the board of directors of BAnQ.


The Ombudsman handles all admissible patron complaints in a confidential manner and does not comment on a complaint to a third person or to the media.

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