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Competition Act (R.S.C., 1985, c. C-34)

Full Document:  

Act current to 2024-02-06 and last amended on 2023-12-15. Previous Versions

PART VII.1Deceptive Marketing Practices (continued)

Reviewable Matters (continued)

Marginal note:Definition of bargain price

  •  (1) For the purposes of this section, bargain price means

    • (a) a price that is represented in an advertisement to be a bargain price by reference to an ordinary price or otherwise; or

    • (b) a price that a person who reads, hears or sees the advertisement would reasonably understand to be a bargain price by reason of the prices at which the product advertised or like products are ordinarily supplied.

  • Marginal note:Bait and switch selling

    (2) A person engages in reviewable conduct who advertises at a bargain price a product that the person does not supply in reasonable quantities having regard to the nature of the market in which the person carries on business, the nature and size of the person’s business and the nature of the advertisement.

  • Marginal note:Saving

    (3) Subsection (2) does not apply to a person who establishes that

    • (a) the person took reasonable steps to obtain in adequate time a quantity of the product that would have been reasonable having regard to the nature of the advertisement, but was unable to obtain such a quantity by reason of events beyond the person’s control that could not reasonably have been anticipated;

    • (b) the person obtained a quantity of the product that was reasonable having regard to the nature of the advertisement, but was unable to meet the demand therefor because that demand surpassed the person’s reasonable expectations; or

    • (c) after becoming unable to supply the product in accordance with the advertisement, the person undertook to supply the same product or an equivalent product of equal or better quality at the bargain price and within a reasonable time to all persons who requested the product and who were not supplied with it during the time when the bargain price applied, and the person fulfilled the undertaking.

  • 1999, c. 2, s. 22

Marginal note:Sale above advertised price

  •  (1) A person engages in reviewable conduct who advertises a product for sale or rent in a market and, during the period and in the market to which the advertisement relates, supplies the product at a price that is higher than the price advertised.

  • Marginal note:Saving

    (2) This section does not apply

    • (a) in respect of an advertisement that appears in a catalogue in which it is prominently stated that the prices contained in it are subject to error if the person establishes that the price advertised is in error;

    • (b) in respect of an advertisement that is immediately followed by another advertisement correcting the price mentioned in the first advertisement;

    • (c) in respect of the supply of a security obtained on the open market during a period when the prospectus relating to that security is still current; or

    • (d) in respect of the supply of a product by or on behalf of a person who is not engaged in the business of dealing in that product.

  • Marginal note:Application

    (3) For the purpose of this section, the market to which an advertisement relates is the market that the advertisement could reasonably be expected to reach, unless the advertisement defines the market more narrowly by reference to a geographical area, store, department of a store, sale by catalogue or otherwise.

  • 1999, c. 2, s. 22

Marginal note:Promotional contests

 A person engages in reviewable conduct who, for the purpose of promoting, directly or indirectly, the supply or use of a product, or for the purpose of promoting, directly or indirectly, any business interest, conducts any contest, lottery, game of chance or skill, or mixed chance and skill, or otherwise disposes of any product or other benefit by any mode of chance, skill or mixed chance and skill whatever, where

  • (a) adequate and fair disclosure is not made of the number and approximate value of the prizes, of the area or areas to which they relate and of any fact within the knowledge of the person that affects materially the chances of winning;

  • (b) distribution of the prizes is unduly delayed; or

  • (c) selection of participants or distribution of prizes is not made on the basis of skill or on a random basis in any area to which prizes have been allocated.

  • 1999, c. 2, s. 22

Marginal note:Saving

  •  (1) Sections 74.01 to 74.06 do not apply to a person who prints or publishes or otherwise disseminates a representation, including an advertisement, on behalf of another person in Canada, where the person establishes that the person obtained and recorded the name and address of that other person and accepted the representation in good faith for printing, publishing or other dissemination in the ordinary course of that person’s business.

  • Marginal note:Non-application

    (2) Sections 74.01 to 74.06 do not apply in respect of conduct prohibited by sections 52.1, 53, 55 and 55.1.

  • 1999, c. 2, s. 22
  • 2002, c. 16, s. 9

Marginal note:Civil rights not affected

 Except as otherwise provided in this Part, nothing in this Part shall be construed as depriving any person of a civil right of action.

  • 1999, c. 2, s. 22

Administrative Remedies

Marginal note:Definition of court

 In sections 74.1 to 74.14 and 74.18, court means the Tribunal, the Federal Court or the superior court of a province.

  • 1999, c. 2, s. 22
  • 2002, c. 8, s. 183

Marginal note:Determination of reviewable conduct and judicial order

  •  (1) Where, on application by the Commissioner, a court determines that a person is engaging in or has engaged in reviewable conduct under this Part, the court may order the person

    • (a) not to engage in the conduct or substantially similar reviewable conduct;

    • (b) to publish or otherwise disseminate a notice, in such manner and at such times as the court may specify, to bring to the attention of the class of persons likely to have been reached or affected by the conduct, the name under which the person carries on business and the determination made under this section, including

      • (i) a description of the reviewable conduct,

      • (ii) the time period and geographical area to which the conduct relates, and

      • (iii) a description of the manner in which any representation or advertisement was disseminated, including, where applicable, the name of the publication or other medium employed;

    • (c) to pay an administrative monetary penalty, in any manner that the court specifies, in an amount not exceeding

      • (i) in the case of an individual, the greater of

        • (A) $750,000 and, for each subsequent order, $1,000,000, and

        • (B) three times the value of the benefit derived from the deceptive conduct, if that amount can be reasonably determined, or

      • (ii) in the case of a corporation, the greater of

        • (A) $10,000,000 and, for each subsequent order, $15,000,000, and

        • (B) three times the value of the benefit derived from the deceptive conduct, or, if that amount cannot be reasonably determined, 3% of the corporation’s annual worldwide gross revenues; and

    • (d) in the case of conduct that is reviewable under paragraph 74.01(1)(a), to pay an amount, not exceeding the total of the amounts paid to the person for the products in respect of which the conduct was engaged in, to be distributed among the persons to whom the products were sold — except wholesalers, retailers or other distributors, to the extent that they have resold or distributed the products — in any manner that the court considers appropriate.

  • Marginal note:Duration of order

    (2) An order made under paragraph (1)(a) applies for a period of ten years unless the court specifies a shorter period.

  • Marginal note:Saving

    (3) No order may be made against a person under paragraph (1)(b), (c) or (d) if the person establishes that the person exercised due diligence to prevent the reviewable conduct from occurring.

  • Marginal note:Purpose of order

    (4) The terms of an order made against a person under paragraph (1)(b), (c) or (d) shall be determined with a view to promoting conduct by that person that is in conformity with the purposes of this Part and not with a view to punishment.

  • Marginal note:Aggravating or mitigating factors

    (5) Any evidence of the following shall be taken into account in determining the amount of an administrative monetary penalty under paragraph (1)(c):

    • (a) the reach of the conduct within the relevant geographic market;

    • (b) the frequency and duration of the conduct;

    • (c) the vulnerability of the class of persons likely to be adversely affected by the conduct;

    • (d) the materiality of any representation;

    • (e) the likelihood of self-correction in the relevant geographic market;

    • (f) the effect on competition in the relevant market;

    • (g) the gross revenue from sales affected by the conduct;

    • (h) the financial position of the person against whom the order is made;

    • (i) the history of compliance with this Act by the person against whom the order is made;

    • (j) any decision of the court in relation to an application for an order under paragraph (1)(d);

    • (k) any other amounts paid or ordered to be paid by the person against whom the order is made as a refund or as restitution or other compensation in respect of the conduct; and

    • (l) any other relevant factor.

  • Marginal note:Meaning of subsequent order

    (6) For the purposes of paragraph (1)(c), an order made against a person in respect of conduct that is reviewable under paragraph 74.01(1)(a), (b) or (c), subsection 74.01(2) or (3) or section 74.02, 74.04, 74.05 or 74.06 is a subsequent order if

    • (a) an order was previously made against the person under this section in respect of conduct reviewable under the same provision;

    • (b) the person was previously convicted of an offence under the provision of Part VI, as that Part read immediately before the coming into force of this Part, that corresponded to the provision of this Part;

    • (c) in the case of an order in respect of conduct reviewable under paragraph 74.01(1)(a), the person was previously convicted of an offence under section 52, or under paragraph 52(1)(a) as it read immediately before the coming into force of this Part; or

    • (d) in the case of an order in respect of conduct reviewable under subsection 74.01(2) or (3), the person was previously convicted of an offence under paragraph 52(1)(d) as it read immediately before the coming into force of this Part.

  • Marginal note:Amounts already paid

    (7) In determining an amount to be paid under paragraph (1)(d), the court shall take into account any other amounts paid or ordered to be paid by the person against whom the order is made as a refund or as restitution or other compensation in respect of the products.

  • Marginal note:Implementation of the order

    (8) The court may specify in an order made under paragraph (1)(d) any terms that it considers necessary for the order’s implementation, including terms

    • (a) specifying how the payment is to be administered;

    • (b) respecting the appointment of an administrator to administer the payment and specifying the terms of administration;

    • (c) requiring the person against whom the order is made to pay the administrative costs related to the payment as well as the fees to be paid to an administrator;

    • (d) requiring that potential claimants be notified in the time and manner specified by the court;

    • (e) specifying the time and manner for making claims;

    • (f) specifying the conditions for the eligibility of claimants, including conditions relating to the return of the products to the person against whom the order is made; and

    • (g) providing for the manner in which, and the terms on which, any amount of the payment that remains unclaimed or undistributed is to be dealt with.

  • Marginal note:Variation of terms

    (9) On application by the Commissioner or the person against whom the order is made, the court may vary any term that is specified under subsection (8).

Marginal note:Deduction from administrative monetary penalty

  • 2010, c. 23, s. 79

Marginal note:Temporary order

  •  (1) On application by the Commissioner, a court may order a person who it appears to the court is engaging in conduct that is reviewable under this Part not to engage in that conduct or substantially similar reviewable conduct if it appears to the court that

    • (a) serious harm is likely to ensue unless the order is issued; and

    • (b) the balance of convenience favours issuing the order.

  • Marginal note:Temporary order — supply of a product

    (1.1) On application by the Commissioner, a court may order any person named in the application to refrain from supplying to another person a product that it appears to the court is or is likely to be used to engage in conduct that is reviewable under this Part, or to do any act or thing that it appears to the court could prevent a person from engaging in such conduct, if it appears to the court that

    • (a) serious harm is likely to ensue unless the order is issued; and

    • (b) the balance of convenience favours issuing the order.

  • Marginal note:Duration

    (2) Subject to subsection (5), an order made under subsection (1) or (1.1) has effect, or may be extended on application by the Commissioner, for any period that the court considers sufficient to meet the circumstances of the case.

  • Marginal note:Notice of application

    (3) Subject to subsection (4), at least 48 hours’ notice of an application referred to in subsection (1), (1.1) or (2) shall be given by or on behalf of the Commissioner to the person in respect of whom the order or extension is sought.

  • Marginal note:Ex parte application

    (4) The court may proceed ex parte with an application made under subsection (1) or (1.1) if it is satisfied that subsection (3) cannot reasonably be complied with or that the urgency of the situation is such that service of notice in accordance with subsection (3) would not be in the public interest.

  • Marginal note:Duration of ex parte order

    (5) An order issued ex parte shall have effect for such period as is specified in it, not exceeding seven days unless, on further application made on notice as provided in subsection (3), the court extends the order for such additional period as it considers necessary and sufficient.

  • Marginal note:Duty of Commissioner

    (6) Where an order issued under this section is in effect, the Commissioner shall proceed as expeditiously as possible to complete the inquiry under section 10 arising out of the conduct in respect of which the order was issued.

  • 1999, c. 2, s. 22
  • 2002, c. 16, s. 10
  • 2010, c. 23, s. 80
 

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