Better Decisions At The Door
Bill or Act:
Consumer Protection Act, 2002
Summary of Proposal:
Bill 55, the Stronger Protection for Ontario Consumers Act, amends the Consumer Protection Act, 2002 (CPA).
Changes in Bill 55 will mean that work may not begin to install a water heater during an expanded 20-day cooling-off period on door-to-door contracts of this type.
Changes to the regulation under the CPA are required to implement the new rules. Regulation amendments address any exceptions to the installation ban, to ensure consumers are not left without hot water if their heater is broken. Regulation can also expand the scope of some, or all of the related rules to other door-to-door sales and implement added requirements such as recorded verification calls and improved plain-language disclosure.
The proposed changes would:
Set the Scope of New Rules
1. Expand the cooling-off period and disclosure requirements to include furnaces as well as water heaters.
2. Allow installation work to go ahead during the cooling-off period if a consumer's water heater or furnace is broken.
3. The type of contract used (e.g., rental or sale) should not affect this consumer protection.
Control Contracting Practices
4. Ensure prompt termination of a water heater or furnace rental contract by setting a 30-day deadline by which date a supplier must send their final bill.
5. Improve disclosure requirements for door-to-door contracts for water heaters and furnaces.
Increase the Use of Mandatory Statements
6. Set out mandatory wording that must appear in water heater and furnace contracts to disclose key consumer rights.
7. Set out a plain-language disclosure cover page for water heater and furnace door-to-door contracts.
8. Set out a mandatory script for verification calls that must be completed during the cooling-off period for water heater contracts.
Set a Phase-in Period
9. Give suppliers at least three months to prepare for new rules.
The paper linked below explains and sets out the proposed directions in detail. Interested parties can respond by email, mail or through the Public Consultation Feedback form also linked below.
The ministry welcomes feedback and encourages anyone interested to provide comments on its proposal.
March 7, 2014
Comments Due Date:
April 22, 2014
Ministry of Consumer Services
777 Bay Street, 5th Floor
Toronto, ON M7A 2J3
Attention: Door-to-Door Consultation