In order to keep up with an evolving commercial environment, reduce compliance costs and provide uniform consumer protection across Canada, Ministers Responsible for Consumer Affairs agreed to a package of harmonization proposals presented to them at their meeting in Toronto in September 1996. Ministers then tasked the Consumer Measures Committee with developing a technical template expressing the harmonization proposals in sufficient detail to guide legal drafting and with conducting technical consultations with stakeholders.
The objectives of the harmonized laws are those which have guided development of cost of credit disclosure legislation in the past. They ensure that:
- consumers receive fair, accurate, timely and comparable information about the cost of credit in order to obtain the most economical credit for their needs;
- disclosure and disclosure requirements be as clear and simple as possible, given the inherent complexity of the subject matter; and
- consumers be entitled to pay off loans (other than mortgages) at any time, and if they do so, incur only those finance charges earned up to the time at which the loan is paid off.
- Consultation on Cost of Credit Disclosure - January 2005
- Alberta, Quebec and British Columbia dispute with Canada Panel Report regarding the Federal Bank Act - Cost of Borrowing (Banks) Regulations (PDF, 206KB)
- Agreement and Implementation Schedule
An extensive round of stakeholder consultations was completed in 1998. A further consultation is actually taking place (2005). For further information, please refer to the "publications" section above.
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