Loyalty Programs, Consumer Credit and Advertising to Consumers: New Rules for Quebec Merchants

This article first appeared in French in the January 2018 newsletter of the Quebec retailers association (Conseil québécois du commerce de détail)
On November 15, 2017, the Consumer Protection Act (the “CPA”) was amended by An Act mainly to modernize rules relating to consumer credit and to regulate debt settlement service contracts, high-cost credit contracts and loyalty programs1 (the “Act”) which, as its title indicates, imposes new rules and obligations on Quebec merchants regarding consumer credit, as well as a new legal framework for loyalty programs. In addition the Act creates new requirements for merchants concerning their business practices and advertising.

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Employer Ordered by Ontario Superior Court to Pay $2.6 Million for OHS-Related Criminal Negligence

In August 2017 the Ontario Superior Court of Justice ordered Detour Gold Corp. (the “Corporation”) to pay a fine of $1.4 million after it pleaded guilty to a charge of criminal negligence causing the death of an employee1. A surcharge of $420,000 was added to the amount of the fine, and the Corporation was ordered to pay restitution in the amount of $805,333 to the family of the deceased.

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Revisiting the Dunkin’s Brand Decision in Light of Ontario’s Minimum Wage Increase

Following the recent increase in Ontario’s minimum wage from $11.60 to $14.00, the decision by a Tim Horton’s franchisee to reduce employee benefits to compensate for such increase caused an international uproar.

While no such increase has been made in Quebec thus far, the debate remains current and has the potential to impact any franchise employing workers who would be affected by such a measure.

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The Court of Appeal Limits the Disclosure of Documents Prior to the Authorization of a Class Action Instituted Under the Securities Act

On January 29th, in the course of interlocutory proceedings in connection with a class action filed against Amaya for making false or misleading statements on the secondary market, contrary to Quebec’s Securities Act (the “Act”), the Court of Appeal ruled on a request for disclosure of documents prior to the authorization (certification) of the class action.

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Caron: the Supreme Court reiterates the employee’s duty to accommodate

On February 1, 2018, the Supreme Court of Canada released a much anticipated labour law decision pertaining to the employers’ duty of reasonable accommodation when an employee suffers an employment injury. In CNESST v. Caron, 2018 SCC 3, the Supreme Court of Canada upheld the decision of the Quebec Court of Appeal, reiterated that an employer has a duty to accommodate a worker who has suffered an employment injury, and confirmed that the Commission des normes, de l’équité, de la santé et de la sécurité du travail (the “CNESST”) and the Administrative Labour Tribunal (the “ALT”) have a duty to determine whether a worker has been validly accommodated by the employer.

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Enforceability of a Security Deposit Against a Trustee in the Event of the Bankruptcy of a Commercial Tenant

When negotiating a commercial lease, it is in the landlord’s best interest to require that securities be provided by the prospective tenant in order to protect the landlord against the tenant’s failure to perform its obligations under the lease. A frequent cause of a tenant’s inability to perform its obligations is its insolvency or financial difficulties. It is important for landlords to know that the tenant’s bankruptcy, or the filing by the tenant of a notice of intention or a proposal under the Bankruptcy and Insolvency Act (the “BIA”) can have the effect of negating the protection afforded by certain forms of security.

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