Compliance programs

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Every business should take a proactive approach to compliance with the Competition Act by developing a credible and effective corporate compliance program.

A compliance program is an internal system or process that is designed to:

  • identify and reduce the risk of contravening the Act;
  • remedy any breach that may occur; and
  • foster a culture of compliance within the organization.

A compliance program is a smart business step that involves everyone… meaning all employees—from the mailroom to the executive offices.

Benefits of compliance

Some of the benefits of having a compliance program include:

  • maintaining a good reputation;
  • better possibility of attracting higher‑quality employees, customers and suppliers;
  • better assessment of competition risks;
  • early recognition of contraventions to the Act;
  • reducing the exposures of employees, senior managers, and the corporation to civil or criminal liability;
  • reducing the cost of litigation, fines, and more; and
  • possible reduction of sentence or other lenient treatment where contravention of the Act has occurred.

Healthy competition is a positive force in our market economy. But when companies or individuals engage in conduct contrary to the Act, they expose themselves to significant consequences, such as lawsuits, fines, penalties or even jail time.

It's the right thing to do!

Complying with the law is good for business, good for consumers and good for the economy.

For more information on compliance, see the Corporate Compliance Programs Bulletin on the Bureau’s website.

The Competition Bureau, as an independent law enforcement agency, ensures that Canadian businesses and consumers prosper in a competitive and innovative marketplace.

Headed by the Commissioner of Competition, the Bureau is responsible for the administration and enforcement of the Competition Act, the Consumer Packaging and Labelling Act, the Textile Labelling Act and the Precious Metals Marking Act.

Legal actions

We have the ability to refer criminal matters to the Director of Public Prosecutions, who then decides whether to prosecute before the courts. We also have the power to bring civil matters before the Competition Tribunal or the courts, depending on the conduct in question and applicable legal provisions.

Written opinions

The Commissioner has the discretion to provide a binding written opinion to businesses seeking to comply with the Competition Act. Any person may request written opinions on whether proposed business plans and practices could raise concerns under the Act.

Questions or complaints

If you believe any of the laws under the Bureau’s jurisdiction have been breached, please fill out our online form, call, fax or write.

We are required by law to conduct our investigations in private. We keep the identity of the source and the information provided confidential, subject to certain exceptions.

For more information:

Toll‑free: 1‑800‑348‑5358
National Capital Region: 819‑997‑4282
TTY (for hearing impaired): 1‑866‑694‑8389
Fax: 819‑997‑0324

Information Centre
Competition Bureau
50 Victoria Street
Gatineau, Quebec  K1A 0C9

This publication is intended to provide basic information only. To learn more, please refer to the full text of the Acts or contact the Competition Bureau.

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