Privacy Act (R.S.C., 1985, c. P-21)

Act current to 2016-04-12 and last amended on 2016-04-05. Previous Versions

Office of the Privacy Commissioner

Privacy Commissioner

Marginal note:Appointment
  •  (1) The Governor in Council shall, by commission under the Great Seal, appoint a Privacy Commissioner after consultation with the leader of every recognized party in the Senate and House of Commons and approval of the appointment by resolution of the Senate and House of Commons.

  • Marginal note:Tenure

    (2) Subject to this section, the Privacy Commissioner holds office during good behaviour for a term of seven years, but may be removed for cause by the Governor in Council at any time on address of the Senate and House of Commons.

  • Marginal note:Further terms

    (3) The Privacy Commissioner, on the expiration of a first or any subsequent term of office, is eligible to be re-appointed for a further term not exceeding seven years.

  • Marginal note:Interim appointment

    (4) In the event of the absence or incapacity of the Privacy Commissioner, or if that office is vacant, the Governor in Council may appoint any qualified person to hold that office in the interim for a term not exceeding six months, and that person shall, while holding office, be paid the salary or other remuneration and expenses that may be fixed by the Governor in Council.

  • R.S., 1985, c. P-21, s. 53;
  • 2006, c. 9, s. 118.
Marginal note:Rank, powers and duties generally
  •  (1) The Privacy Commissioner shall rank as and have all the powers of a deputy head of a department, shall engage exclusively in the duties of the office of Privacy Commissioner under this Act or any other Act of Parliament and shall not hold any other office under Her Majesty for reward or engage in any other employment for reward.

  • Marginal note:Salary and expenses

    (2) The Privacy Commissioner shall be paid a salary equal to the salary of a judge of the Federal Court, other than the Chief Justice, and is entitled to be paid reasonable travel and living expenses incurred in the performance of duties under this Act or any other Act of Parliament.

  • Marginal note:Pension benefits

    (3) The provisions of the Public Service Superannuation Act, other than those relating to tenure of office, apply to the Privacy Commissioner, except that a person appointed as Privacy Commissioner from outside the public service, as defined in the Public Service Superannuation Act, may, by notice in writing given to the President of the Treasury Board not more than sixty days after the date of appointment, elect to participate in the pension plan provided in the Diplomatic Service (Special) Superannuation Act, in which case the provisions of that Act, other than those relating to tenure of office, apply to the Privacy Commissioner from the date of appointment and the provisions of the Public Service Superannuation Act do not apply.

  • Marginal note:Other benefits

    (4) The Privacy Commissioner is deemed to be employed in the public service of Canada for the purposes of the Government Employees Compensation Act and any regulations made under section 9 of the Aeronautics Act.

  • R.S., 1985, c. P-21, s. 54;
  • 2002, c. 8, s. 160;
  • 2003, c. 22, s. 225(E).
Marginal note:Information Commissioner may be appointed as Privacy Commissioner
  •  (1) The Governor in Council may appoint as Privacy Commissioner under section 53 the Information Commissioner appointed under the Access to Information Act.

  • Marginal note:Salary

    (2) In the event that the Information Commissioner is appointed in accordance with subsection (1) as Privacy Commissioner, the Privacy Commissioner shall, notwithstanding subsection 54(2), be paid the salary of the Information Commissioner but not the salary of the Privacy Commissioner.

  • 1980-81-82-83, c. 111, Sch. II “55”.

Assistant Privacy Commissioner

Marginal note:Appointment of Assistant Privacy Commissioner
  •  (1) The Governor in Council may, on the recommendation of the Privacy Commissioner, appoint one or more Assistant Privacy Commissioners.

  • Marginal note:Tenure of office and removal of Assistant Privacy Commissioner

    (2) Subject to this section, an Assistant Privacy Commissioner holds office during good behaviour for a term not exceeding five years.

  • Marginal note:Further terms

    (3) An Assistant Privacy Commissioner, on the expiration of a first or any subsequent term of office, is eligible to be re-appointed for a further term not exceeding five years.

  • 1980-81-82-83, c. 111, Sch. II “56”;
  • 1984, c. 40, s. 79(E).
Marginal note:Duties generally
  •  (1) An Assistant Privacy Commissioner shall engage exclusively in such duties or functions of the office of the Privacy Commissioner under this Act or any other Act of Parliament as are delegated by the Privacy Commissioner to that Assistant Privacy Commissioner and shall not hold any other office under Her Majesty for reward or engage in any other employment for reward.

  • Marginal note:Salary and expenses

    (2) An Assistant Privacy Commissioner is entitled to be paid a salary to be fixed by the Governor in Council and such travel and living expenses incurred in the performance of duties under this Act or any other Act of Parliament as the Privacy Commissioner considers reasonable.

  • Marginal note:Pension benefits

    (3) The provisions of the Public Service Superannuation Act, other than those relating to tenure of office, apply to an Assistant Privacy Commissioner.

  • Marginal note:Other benefits

    (4) An Assistant Privacy Commissioner is deemed to be employed in the public service of Canada for the purposes of the Government Employees Compensation Act and any regulations made under section 9 of the Aeronautics Act.

  • 1980-81-82-83, c. 111, Sch. II “57”.

Staff

Marginal note:Staff of the Privacy Commissioner
  •  (1) Such officers and employees as are necessary to enable the Privacy Commissioner to perform the duties and functions of the Commissioner under this Act or any other Act of Parliament shall be appointed in accordance with the Public Service Employment Act.

  • Marginal note:Technical assistance

    (2) The Privacy Commissioner may engage on a temporary basis the services of persons having technical or specialized knowledge of any matter relating to the work of the Commissioner to advise and assist the Commissioner in the performance of the duties and functions of the Commissioner under this Act or any other Act of Parliament and, with the approval of the Treasury Board, may fix and pay the remuneration and expenses of such persons.

  • R.S., 1985, c. P-21, s. 58;
  • 2006, c. 9, s. 185(F).

Delegation

Marginal note:Delegation by Privacy Commissioner
  •  (1) Subject to subsection (2), the Privacy Commissioner may authorize any person to exercise or perform, subject to such restrictions or limitations as the Commissioner may specify, any of the powers, duties or functions of the Commissioner under this Act except

    • (a) in any case other than a delegation to an Assistant Privacy Commissioner, the power to delegate under this section; and

    • (b) in any case, the powers, duties or functions set out in sections 38 and 39.

  • Marginal note:Delegations of investigations relating to international affairs and defence

    (2) The Privacy Commissioner may not, nor may an Assistant Privacy Commissioner, delegate

    • (a) the investigation of any complaint resulting from a refusal by the head of a government institution to disclose personal information by reason of paragraph 19(1)(a) or (b) or section 21, or

    • (b) the investigation under section 36 of files contained in a personal information bank designated under section 18 as an exempt bank on the basis of personal information described in section 21

    except to one of a maximum of four officers or employees of the Commissioner specifically designated by the Commissioner for the purpose of conducting those investigations.

  • Marginal note:Delegation by Assistant Privacy Commissioner

    (3) An Assistant Privacy Commissioner may authorize any person to exercise or perform, subject to such restrictions or limitations as the Assistant Privacy Commissioner may specify, any of the powers, duties or functions of the Privacy Commissioner under this Act that the Assistant Privacy Commissioner is authorized by the Privacy Commissioner to exercise or perform.

  • 1980-81-82-83, c. 111, Sch. II “59”.

Special Studies

Marginal note:Special studies
  •  (1) The Privacy Commissioner shall carry out or cause to be carried out such studies as may be referred to the Commissioner by the Minister of Justice

    • (a) relating to the privacy of individuals,

    • (b) concerning the extension of the rights to which individuals are entitled under this Act in respect of personal information about themselves, and

    • (c) relating to the collection, retention, disposal, use or disclosure of personal information by persons or bodies, other than government institutions, that come within the legislative authority of Parliament,

    and the Privacy Commissioner shall report thereon to the Minister of Justice from time to time.

  • Marginal note:Reports to be tabled

    (2) The Minister of Justice shall cause each report by the Privacy Commissioner under subsection (1) to be laid before Parliament on any of the first fifteen days after receipt thereof that either House of Parliament is sitting.

  • 1980-81-82-83, c. 111, Sch. II “60”.
 
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