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The competitiveness and reach of Canadian wireline and wireless services are critical to the economic prosperity and social inclusion of Canadians. It is not surprising therefore that the Canadian Competition Bureau identified telecommunications as a priority area in its 2019-2020 Annual Plan.

True to this plan, in August of this year the Bureau released

spyware-2319403Citing the desire for a balanced approach to the needs of individuals and organizations under Canada’s anti-spam law, the Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development announced today that he is delaying indefinitely the coming into force of the private right of action provisions (section 51) in Canada’s anti-spam law (CASL).

This important decision is

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Hertz and Dollar Thrifty agree to pay $1.25 million

The Competition Bureau announced this week that Hertz and Dollar Thrifty have agreed to pay an administrative monetary penalty of $1.25 million and to implement compliance procedures to resolve the Bureau’s investigation of “drip pricing” by the companies.  “Drip pricing” refers to advertised prices that are

On January 22, 2016, Justice Myers of the Supreme Court of BC issued a decision denying the plaintiffs’ request for disclosure of documents collected by the Competition Bureau in Pro-Sys Consultants Ltd. v Microsoft Corporation 2016 BC 97.

Pro-Sys v. Microsoft is an indirect purchaser class action for damages based on allegations of anti-competitive conduct. 

On October 1, 2014, the Competition Bureau (the “Bureau”) announced that Bell Aliant Regional Communications Inc. (“Bell Aliant”) had addressed the Bureau’s vertical foreclosure concerns regarding its proposed acquisition of O.N. Tel Inc. (“Ontera”).  It did so by granting to Bragg Communications Inc. (“Eastlink”) a 20-year indefeasible right of use (IRU) of between two and

On June 27, 2013, Madam Justice B.B. Warkentin of the Ontario Superior Court of Justice held that section 69(2) of the Competition Act violates sections 7 and 11(d) of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms when applied in criminal proceedings.

Section 69(2) establishes the following presumptions:

  1. actions taken by an agent of a participant

On April 25, 2013, the Canadian Competition Bureau (the “Bureau”) published two new pre-merger notification interpretation guidelines. Subject to limited exceptions, mergers are pre-notifiable in Canada if specified party-size and transaction-size notification thresholds are satisfied. Pre-merger notification interpretation guidelines issued by the Bureau provide guidance on when filing exemptions may apply, how pre-notification thresholds should

The principal Canadian competition law theme in 2013, as with the year before, was enforcement. Criminal enforcement in the areas of price-fixing, bid-rigging and misleading advertising continued with new guilty pleas against various companies and individuals (e.g. auto parts, air cargo, chocolate, real estate advisory services contracts, gasoline and retail multiple telemarketing schemes). The Competition Tribunal (the “Tribunal”) released two decisions involving the Toronto Real Estate Board (“TREB”) and VISA and MasterCard that provided significant interpretations of the scope of the abuse of dominance and price maintenance provisions of the Competition Act (the “Act”). The Superior Court of Ontario also released its decision dismissing, in part, the Competition Bureau’s (the “Bureau”) misleading advertising charge against Rogers and Chat-r with respect to the claim of “fewest dropped calls”.  Finally, the Supreme Court of Canada granted leave to appeal in Tervita Corporation v Commission of Competition. Five months earlier, the Federal Court of Appeal (“FCA”) upheld the order of the Tribunal requiring Tervita Corporation to divest the Babkirk hazardous waste landfill site in northern British Columbia that it obtained through its acquisition of Complete Environmental Inc.

With respect to private litigation, the Supreme Court of Canada released a trilogy of long awaited decisions in proposed class proceedings brought by indirect purchasers of products alleging competition law violations.   The Supreme Court concluded, among other things, that indirect purchasers have a cause of action, resolving a conflict in appellate jurisprudence in Canada. The Supreme Court’s decisions are expected to have a profound impact upon cartel-related class actions in Canada.

2013 also saw John Pecman appointed as Commissioner of Competition on June 12, 2013 for a five-year term. Prior to his appointment as Commissioner, Mr. Pecman held the position of Interim Commissioner from September 2012 to June 2013.

Our Bulletin reports on these and other developments.


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