BBB Warns of Advance Fee Loan Scam

March 07, 2016


Vancouver, BC – Fresh off BBB’s National Top 10 Scams is a warning about a local company offering loans but only if you pay an advance fee to secure it. Advance fee loans are illegal in Canada, and in fact, they are one of our Top 10 Scams this year.

Cash Advance, or Cash Advance Canada is raising a lot of alarm bells for BBB and we advise the general public to steer clear of this organization.

“This company has many complaints against it from many parts of Canada, and they go unanswered,” says Evan Kelly, Senior Communications Advisor for BBB serving Mainland BC. “They have given us a lot of erroneous information about themselves. For instance they claim to be based in the Bentall Centre in downtown Vancouver, yet the addresses they give either belong to the National Bank Financial, or they don’t exist. The complaints we receive have people losing a lot of money, which is made worse as many victims are in need of financial help.”

Here are some tips on how to spot a loan scam:

  • They are not interested in your credit history and offer guaranteed approval.
  • They want you to act quickly.
  • Any fees are not disclosed or advertised.
  • They will say your credit is bad and require an ‘advance fee’ to secure the loan.
  • In many regions it is illegal to offer loans over the phone.
  • Be wary of evasive tactics and a reluctance to hand over contact information and address.
  • Some lenders you copycat names that sound similar to well-known businesses.
  • A lender who asks you to wire money or pay another individual is likely a scammer.

What you can do to protect yourself:

  • Ask which big lenders the loan brokers deal with.
  • Check to see if the company is registered with the government and has a license to operate.
  • If applying online, make sure website is secure with https:// at start of URL. (this particular company does not have this)
  • Research the business by reading business reviews at
  • Before giving personal and banking information ask why and how it will be used.
  • Ask about payment deferment policy.
  • Always expect contracts in writing and make sure you understand your roles and obligations.
  • Contact local credit counseling services or seek alternative financing options.
  • Search BBB Business Reviews for legitimate lending companies.


Media Contacts:

Evan Kelly, Senior Communications Advisor BBB Serving Mainland BC                                                                                                                   604-488-8702                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      404-788 Beatty Street                                                                                                                                                                                                   Vancouver, BC                                                                                                                                                                                                                 V6B 2M1

About BBB:

For more than 100 years, Better Business Bureau has been helping people find businesses and brands they can trust. In 2014, people turned to BBB more than 165 million times for BBB Business Reviews, all available for free at BBB Serving Mainland B.C., founded in 1939 and serving the Lower Mainland, Thompson-Okanagan, Northern, Central and Southern Interior BC, and the Yukon, is one of 112 local, independent BBBs across North America. In 2014, consumers turned to BBB Serving Mainland B.C. more than 1.8 million times for Business Reviews and processed 7,500 complaints.