All collection agencies must hold a permit from the Office de la protection du consommateur. In addition, representatives of collection agents must hold a certificate.

Obligations related to the permit

This permit makes it possible to control the honesty and competency of the collection agent. To be issued this permit, the agency must have given a security to the Office. The security is a sum of money that can be used to compensate you, for example, if you were to win a court case as a result of a problem with an agency.

An agency that holds a permit is also required to deposit any amounts it collects in a trust account until they are remitted to the creditor. You are thus assured that the amounts paid will not be used for other purposes.

How to find out whether an agent holds a permit

You can use the Get information about a merchant tool to find out whether a collection agent who contacts you holds a permit.

What if the agency does not hold a permit? Contact the Office to file a complaint.

How to find out whether an agent’s representative holds a certificate

The collection agent representative certificate attests that its holder is aware of his or her obligations and responsibilities with regard to debt collection. To obtain this certificate, the representative must, among other things, pass an exam on the laws and regulations that apply to debt collection.

The Office has made a search tool available so that you can check whether a representative who contacts you holds the required certificate.

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Last update : May 3, 2021

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The information contained on this page is presented in simple terms to make it easier to understand. It does not replace the texts of the laws and regulations.