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Legal Information/ Legal Briefs

Legal Briefs

Until 2010, these legal briefs provide examples of judgments pertaining to everyday situations. Beginning in 2012, they deal with various topics of general interest, such as rental issues, family law, human rights, civil liability, insurance, dealings between spouses and social aid. They are intended to inform and to prevent undesirable situations.


 


Legal Briefs 2016

  Month
Number
Legal brief
December
 08
HAS - Homologation assistance service for agreements This hypelink opens a PDF file in a new window.
The HAS is intended for parties who wish, for whatever reason, to modify arrangements pertaining to child custody or access rights or to support involving a child or a child and a former spouse. Only people who have previously obtained a judgment with respect to child custody or support who agree on more
October/Nov
 07
SARPA – Service administratif de rajustement des pensions alimentaires pour enfants [Child support recalculation service] This hypelink opens a PDF file in a new window.
The Service administratif de rajustement des pensions alimentaires pour enfants (SARPA) [child support recalculation service] is a purely administrative service. Where support for a minor child has already been determined by a court judgment, parents can use the SARPA to obtain the recalculation of more
August/Sept
 06
There's a bailiff at my door! This hypelink opens a PDF file in a new window.
Jérôme Blais, a former musician, is 66 years old and is still working. He lives in an apartment in a village and has a car that he uses to get to work, since there is no public transport where he lives. His furniture is old and the only thing of value in his possession, in addition to his car, is an more
June/July
 05
Can my landlord have access to my dwelling This hypelink opens a PDF file in a new window.
The answer is yes, but there are rules that must be followed under the Civil Code of Québec.* The law states that the landlord has the right to check the condition of the leased property, to carry out work in it and to have it visited by a potential tenant or purchaser. However, the landlord must ex more
May
 04
Recipients of last resort financial assistance and stays outside Québec This hypelink opens a PDF file in a new window.
In order to be eligible for financial assistance, an adult must reside in Québec within the meaning of the Individual and Family Assistance Regulation.

Major amendments to this regulation came into force on May 1, 2015. The purpose of one of these amendments was to tighten the conditio
more
April
 03
Protecting yourself when making online purchases This hypelink opens a PDF file in a new window.
Given the many advantages of online shopping, it can be a quick and practical way to make purchases. It allows you to search for the item you need, compare what is available, select the product you want and purchase it, all from the comfort of home. However, it can also expose you to fraud. It is therefore important to know how you can protect yourself against fraud and to remain abreast of the risks associated with this type of shopping.

Learn to recognize a “questionable” online shopping site. To do so, the Government of Canada mentions a few things you should look for to identify an online shopping site that is not trustworthy. Such sites will often have the following characteristics:

  • The website is poorly designed and/or does not present a professional image;
  • The merchant’s civic address and/or telephone number cannot be found;
  • Policies regarding sales, exchanges, returns and confidentiality are difficult to find and/or unclear;
  • You cannot leave a page or return to the previous page; or
  • You are asked to provide banking information or credit card information when you are not actually in the process of buying anything.


Do some research on the merchant. Look on the website for the full contact information of the merchant and its customer service department. If you are not familiar with the merchant, ask for opinions from people who have already done business with the merchant or check whether there are reviews about the merchant on other websites and, if so, read those reviews. When dealing with a Québec merchant, you can also check an official register such as Québec’s Enterprise Register1 in order to get certain information about the merchant’s identity. Moreover, you can get information about a Québec merchant by using the “Get information about a merchant” tool on the website of the Office de la protection du consommateur;2 you can use this tool to find out, among other things, whether the Office has intervened with respect to the merchant or whether the merchant has received any formal notices from consumers.

For a secure transaction. Make sure you are on a secure site. To do so, look for a locked padlock (or an unbroken key) in the address line, which should begin with https:// (rather than http://). Never use a public wireless (Wi-Fi) network or a shared workstation to make online purchases and regularly check updates to your antivirus software so you will be protected if the website turns out to be fraudulent. Protect your personal information by familiarizing yourself with the protection of personal information policy posted on the merchant’s website and by only providing the information required for the transaction.

When paying. Check that the merchant has provided you with the price of the goods or services, any related costs, the applicable taxes, the total cost of your purchase, a description of any other costs that may be charged and whose amount cannot reasonably be calculated (e.g., customs duties and customs brokerage fees), and the currency used to pay for your purchase if you are not paying in Canadian dollars. When possible, use your credit card to pay and, in particular, never send cash.

Purchases abroad. If you are making a purchase from a foreign merchant, remember that these purchases can be risky because laws and standards are not the same everywhere. The Consumer Protection Act may not protect you if you make a purchase from a merchant that does not do business in Québec. If you nevertheless wish to purchase products from abroad:

  • Visit the website of the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA)3 in order to find out the requirements for products being brought into the country, because certain products may be confiscated by customs;
  • Don’t forget to take handling and shipping costs into account as well as taxes, customs duties and the exchange rate; and
  • Make sure the product you are purchasing meets Canadian safety standards.


Chargebacks. The Consumer Protection Act introduced a new type of protection for online purchases made with a credit card. It applies to purchases made abroad. Under certain conditions, a Québec consumer can be reimbursed by the issuer of his credit card. This is referred to as a chargeback. For example, if the product purchased is not delivered on time, you can ask the merchant to reimburse you. If the merchant does not do so within 15 days, you have 60 days within which to request the chargeback from the issuer of your credit card. Careful! In order to get a chargeback, you must respect certain conditions and time limits. For more information about chargebacks, visit the website of the Office de la protection du consommateur.


1 www.registreentreprises.gouv.qc.ca/en/default.aspx
2 www.opc.gouv.qc.ca/en/home/
3 http://www.cbsa-asfc.gc.ca/menu-eng.html


Legal brief *
April  2016
Number  03
Text prepared by   Me Martine Belley-Lemieux,avocate au bureau d’aide juridique de Drummondville
 
* The information set out in this document is not a legal interpretation.
The masculine is used to designate persons solely in order to simplify the text.
February/March
 02
Child benefits and agreements between parents: is this a good idea? This hypelink opens a PDF file in a new window.
How many times has a judge heard an accused person defend himself against a charge of theft by simply alleging, without providing specific details, that he didn’t really want to steal the object in question, but only borrow it from the legitimate owner with the intention of eventually returning it? more
January
 01
When borrowing becomes stealing... This hypelink opens a PDF file in a new window.
How many times has a judge heard an accused person defend himself against a charge of theft by simply alleging, without providing specific details, that he didn’t really want to steal the object in question, but only borrow it from the legitimate owner with the intention of eventually returning it? more
 
© Commission des services juridiques Création: Diane Laurin - 2017