If an advertisement about purchasing an item by instalments contains any of the following points, it must also include all of the others:

  • an example of an amount for which credit may be extended;
  • the required down payment or an indication that no down payment is required;
  • a component of the credit charges;
  • the total credit charges;
  • the number of instalments and the length of the instalment periods;
  • the amount of each instalment;
  • the consumer’s total obligation (the total amount payable according to the contract).

Periodic payments

If an advertisement indicates the amount of the instalments to be paid in order to receive an item, the total price must also be indicated and appear more prominently.

Credit rate

Any advertisement that makes reference to a credit rate must indicate that rate.

Any time a credit-related rate (e.g. an interest rate) is indicated in an advertisement about an instalment sale, the credit rate calculated in accordance with the Consumer Protection Act must be disclosed just as prominently. An advertisement may, however, only indicate the credit rate calculated in accordance with the requirements set forth in the Act.

The interest rate is an indication, expressed as an annual percentage, of the interest paid on the amount that is financed.

The credit rate calculated in accordance with the Consumer Protection Act is an indication, expressed as an annual percentage, of the total of all credit fees charged by virtue of the credit contract, including: interest, insurance (other than automobile insurance, among other things), administration fees, etc. It is the true cost of the credit.

"No fees or interest" promotions

Are you led to believe that you would be granted a grace period "at 0% financing," during which you would not pay any credit charges? Such a claim must clearly specify the credit rate that will apply once that period is over, if you have not reimbursed everything in full by then.

Claims to improve your financial situation

The law prohibits any false or misleading claims that would lead you to believe that a credit purchase could improve your financial situation or solve your debt problems.

Reporting a merchant

If you find yourself in a situation in which these rules are not respected, you can file a complaint with the Office de la protection du consommateur. We will evaluate the possible options.

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Last update : July 28, 2020

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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.