Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act (S.C. 2000, c. 5)

Act current to 2017-11-20 and last amended on 2015-06-23. Previous Versions

Marginal note:Powers of Commissioner
  •  (1) In the conduct of an investigation of a complaint, the Commissioner may

    • (a) summon and enforce the appearance of persons before the Commissioner and compel them to give oral or written evidence on oath and to produce any records and things that the Commissioner considers necessary to investigate the complaint, in the same manner and to the same extent as a superior court of record;

    • (b) administer oaths;

    • (c) receive and accept any evidence and other information, whether on oath, by affidavit or otherwise, that the Commissioner sees fit, whether or not it is or would be admissible in a court of law;

    • (d) at any reasonable time, enter any premises, other than a dwelling-house, occupied by an organization on satisfying any security requirements of the organization relating to the premises;

    • (e) converse in private with any person in any premises entered under paragraph (d) and otherwise carry out in those premises any inquiries that the Commissioner sees fit; and

    • (f) examine or obtain copies of or extracts from records found in any premises entered under paragraph (d) that contain any matter relevant to the investigation.

  • Marginal note:Dispute resolution mechanisms

    (2) The Commissioner may attempt to resolve complaints by means of dispute resolution mechanisms such as mediation and conciliation.

  • Marginal note:Delegation

    (3) The Commissioner may delegate any of the powers set out in subsection (1) or (2).

  • Marginal note:Return of records

    (4) The Commissioner or the delegate shall return to a person or an organization any record or thing that they produced under this section within 10 days after they make a request to the Commissioner or the delegate, but nothing precludes the Commissioner or the delegate from again requiring that the record or thing be produced.

  • Marginal note:Certificate of delegation

    (5) Any person to whom powers set out in subsection (1) are delegated shall be given a certificate of the delegation and the delegate shall produce the certificate, on request, to the person in charge of any premises to be entered under paragraph (1)(d).

  • 2010, c. 23, s. 83.

Discontinuance of Investigation

Marginal note:Reasons
  •  (1) The Commissioner may discontinue the investigation of a complaint if the Commissioner is of the opinion that

    • (a) there is insufficient evidence to pursue the investigation;

    • (b) the complaint is trivial, frivolous or vexatious or is made in bad faith;

    • (c) the organization has provided a fair and reasonable response to the complaint;

    • (c.1) the matter is the object of a compliance agreement entered into under subsection 17.1(1);

    • (d) the matter is already the object of an ongoing investigation under this Part;

    • (e) the matter has already been the subject of a report by the Commissioner;

    • (f) any of the circumstances mentioned in paragraph 12(1)(a), (b) or (c) apply; or

    • (g) the matter is being or has already been addressed under a procedure referred to in paragraph 12(1)(a) or (b).

  • Marginal note:Other reason

    (2) The Commissioner may discontinue an investigation in respect of an act alleged in a complaint if the Commissioner is of the opinion that the act, if proved, would constitute a contravention of any of sections 6 to 9 of An Act to promote the efficiency and adaptability of the Canadian economy by regulating certain activities that discourage reliance on electronic means of carrying out commercial activities, and to amend the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission Act, the Competition Act, the Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act and the Telecommunications Act or section 52.01 of the Competition Act or would constitute conduct that is reviewable under section 74.011 of that Act.

  • Marginal note:Notification

    (3) The Commissioner shall notify the complainant and the organization that the investigation has been discontinued and give reasons.

  • 2010, c. 23, s. 83;
  • 2015, c. 32, s. 12.

Commissioner’s Report

Marginal note:Contents
  •  (1) The Commissioner shall, within one year after the day on which a complaint is filed or is initiated by the Commissioner, prepare a report that contains

    • (a) the Commissioner’s findings and recommendations;

    • (b) any settlement that was reached by the parties;

    • (c) if appropriate, a request that the organization give the Commissioner, within a specified time, notice of any action taken or proposed to be taken to implement the recommendations contained in the report or reasons why no such action has been or is proposed to be taken; and

    • (d) the recourse, if any, that is available under section 14.

  • (2) [Repealed, 2010, c. 23, s. 84]

  • Marginal note:Report to parties

    (3) The report shall be sent to the complainant and the organization without delay.

  • 2000, c. 5, s. 13;
  • 2010, c. 23, s. 84.

Hearing by Court

Marginal note:Application
  •  (1) A complainant may, after receiving the Commissioner’s report or being notified under subsection 12.2(3) that the investigation of the complaint has been discontinued, apply to the Court for a hearing in respect of any matter in respect of which the complaint was made, or that is referred to in the Commissioner’s report, and that is referred to in clause 4.1.3, 4.2, 4.3.3, 4.4, 4.6, 4.7 or 4.8 of Schedule 1, in clause 4.3, 4.5 or 4.9 of that Schedule as modified or clarified by Division 1 or 1.1, in subsection 5(3) or 8(6) or (7), in section 10 or in Division 1.1.

  • Marginal note:Time for application

    (2) A complainant shall make an application within one year after the report or notification is sent or within any longer period that the Court may, either before or after the expiry of that year, allow.

  • Marginal note:For greater certainty

    (3) For greater certainty, subsections (1) and (2) apply in the same manner to complaints referred to in subsection 11(2) as to complaints referred to in subsection 11(1).

  • 2000, c. 5, s. 14;
  • 2010, c. 23, s. 85;
  • 2015, c. 32, s. 13.
Marginal note:Commissioner may apply or appear

 The Commissioner may, in respect of a complaint that the Commissioner did not initiate,

  • (a) apply to the Court, within the time limited by section 14, for a hearing in respect of any matter described in that section, if the Commissioner has the consent of the complainant;

  • (b) appear before the Court on behalf of any complainant who has applied for a hearing under section 14; or

  • (c) with leave of the Court, appear as a party to any hearing applied for under section 14.

Marginal note:Remedies

 The Court may, in addition to any other remedies it may give,

  • (a) order an organization to correct its practices in order to comply with sections 5 to 10;

  • (b) order an organization to publish a notice of any action taken or proposed to be taken to correct its practices, whether or not ordered to correct them under paragraph (a); and

  • (c) award damages to the complainant, including damages for any humiliation that the complainant has suffered.

Marginal note:Summary hearings
  •  (1) An application made under section 14 or 15 shall be heard and determined without delay and in a summary way unless the Court considers it inappropriate to do so.

  • Marginal note:Precautions

    (2) In any proceedings arising from an application made under section 14 or 15, the Court shall take every reasonable precaution, including, when appropriate, receiving representations ex parte and conducting hearings in camera, to avoid the disclosure by the Court or any person of any information or other material that the organization would be authorized to refuse to disclose if it were requested under clause 4.9 of Schedule 1.

Compliance Agreements

Marginal note:Compliance agreement
  •  (1) If the Commissioner believes on reasonable grounds that an organization has committed, is about to commit or is likely to commit an act or omission that could constitute a contravention of a provision of Division 1 or 1.1 or a failure to follow a recommendation set out in Schedule 1, the Commissioner may enter into a compliance agreement, aimed at ensuring compliance with this Part, with that organization.

  • Marginal note:Terms

    (2) A compliance agreement may contain any terms that the Commissioner considers necessary to ensure compliance with this Part.

  • Marginal note:Effect of compliance agreement — no application

    (3) When a compliance agreement is entered into, the Commissioner, in respect of any matter covered under the agreement,

    • (a) shall not apply to the Court for a hearing under subsection 14(1) or paragraph 15(a); and

    • (b) shall apply to the court for the suspension of any pending applications that were made by the Commissioner under those provisions.

  • Marginal note:For greater certainty

    (4) For greater certainty, a compliance agreement does not preclude

    • (a) an individual from applying for a hearing under section 14; or

    • (b) the prosecution of an offence under the Act.

  • 2015, c. 32, s. 15.
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