Contributing Lawyers

Canada

Cyndee Todgham Cherniak

United States

Susan Kohn Ross

Australia

Andrew Hudson



Importers Must Prepare for Canada's New Consumer Protection Laws

On December 15, 2010, Bill C-36 "Canada Consumer Product Safety Act" received Royal Assent in Canada's House of Commons. Bill C-36 passed third reading in the Canadian Senate on December 13, 2010 and previously passed third reading in Canada's House of Commons on October 29, 2010. However, it is not yet enacted. A copy of the Canada Consumer Product Safety Act may be found at the following link - http://www2.parl.gc.ca/HousePublications/Publication.aspx?Docid=4903205&file=4

Section 76 of the Canada Consumer Product Safety Act provides that:

"The provisions of this Act come into force on a day or days to be fixed by order of the Governor in Council."

This means that Canada's new consumer protection rules can come into effect very quickly and on a date to be announced in a regulation that will be published in the Canada Gazette. Importers need to be looking for that regulation and be ready to comply. This means that importers should learn their new obligations (and there are many new obligations on importers) and put in place appropriate compliance programs and recording and reporting regimes.

The provisions of the Canada Consumer Product Safety Act contain some of the information necessary to start the compliance implementation process. However, many of the compliance obligations will be published in regulations that will be published in the Canada Gazette. Importers need to be looking for those regulations.

I cannot stress enough that importers need to start to prepare to meet their new obligations.

If you require help designing and developing a compliance program covering Canada's new consumer protection laws, please contact Cyndee Todgham Cherniak at 416-307-4168. If you do not know how to monitor Canadian developments in consumer protection laws, please contact Cyndee. We offer flat fee arrangements for notifying clients of changes to Canadian consumer protection laws.

On November 25, 2010, I testified before the Standing Senate Committee on Social Affairs, Science and Technology and made a short 5 minute presentation of concerns about Bill C-36. For a copy of the complete Senate Session and the line-by-line vote, please go to the following link - http://www.parl.gc.ca/40/3/parlbus/commbus/senate/Com-e/soci-e/16evb-e.htm?Language=E&Parl=40&Ses=3&comm_id=47

I previously testified before the Standing Senate Committee on Social Affairs, Science and Technology concerning Bill C-6 (a previous version of Bill C-36) on November 25, 2009. For a copy of the complete Senate Session and the line-by-line vote, please go to the following link - http://www.parl.gc.ca/40/2/parlbus/commbus/senate/Com-e/soci-e/10mn-e.htm?Language=E&Parl=40&Ses=2&comm_id=47

If participated on a panel discussing Canada's food safety laws at the Canada-United States Law Institute on April 9, 2010 - go to this link for the PowerPoint presentation - http://www.langmichener.ca/uploads/content/Canada-US%20Regulatory%20Regime%20-%20%20Food%20Safety%20(9April2010).pdf

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