Before you file a complaint against a merchant or report a situation that causes problems, verify whether the merchant has failed to meet his or her obligations. Consult the website section that addresses the topic you are concerned about.

To file a complaint, you must contact us to speak with an officer, who will take note of all the necessary information in connection with the situation. The officer will verify whether your complaint is receivable, that is, if it is about a subject that falls within the Office’s jurisdiction. If it does, he or she will enter the complaint in the merchant’s file. The agent could also provide tools that will help you settle the situation. However, it remains your responsibility to communicate and negotiate with the merchant.

If a merchant has committed an offence against the law, the officer may ask you to send all documents relevant to the situation: written evaluation, invoice, contract, warranty document, etc.

Why file a complaint?

The complaints filed by consumers are very helpful to us. They allow us to:

  • determine which sectors or commercial practices cause the most problems;
  • better target our merchant-monitoring interventions;
  • identify which merchants do not comply with the law and intervene accordingly.

We can thus act as efficiently as possible and sanction merchants that are in the wrong, if needed. For all of these reasons, the information you send us through a complaint is very valuable.

How does the Office handle your complaints?

The Office intervenes in priority with merchants who:

  • are suspected of having committed a serious offence (the Office has made a list of offences to laws that fall within its jurisdiction; these offences are graded according to a seriousness scale);
  • have been the subject of one of the following interventions in the past 5 years:

    • the issue of a warning reporting an offence;
    • the filing of a lawsuit;
    • the filing by a merchant of a written voluntary commitment in which they commit to the Office to change some of their commercial practices;
    • the filing of an injunction;
    • the withdrawal or suspension of a permit delivered by the Office that is essential for the merchant to pursue its commercial activities;

  • have been the target of many complaints by consumers.

The Office can also decide to intervene with a merchant following exceptional circumstances.

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Last update : April 17, 2019

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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.