Frequently asked questions: Regulations

From: Financial Consumer Agency of Canada

The FAQs below are meant to provide Canadians and businesses with basic information about a selection of regulations administered by FCAC. These ten regulations were selected based on inquiries received. All of the regulations are available on the Department of Justice Website, which includes a Consolidated Regulations web page that lists regulations alphabetically and a Consolidated Acts page that lists the acts alphabetically. Each act contains links to all associated regulations. 

Cost of Borrowing (Authorized Foreign Banks) Regulations (SOR/2002-262)

Cost of Borrowing (Banks) Regulations (SOR/2001-101)

Cost of Borrowing (Canadian Insurance Companies) Regulations (SOR/2001-102)

Cost of Borrowing (Foreign Insurance Companies) Regulations (SOR/2001-103)

Cost of Borrowing (Trust and Loan Companies) Regulations (SOR/2001-104)

Cost of Borrowing (Retail Associations) Regulations (SOR/2002-263)

  1. What is the purpose of these regulations?
    Federally regulated financial institutions (FRFIs) are required to disclose certain information to consumers in relation to credit products such as credit cards, fixed or variable rate loans, or lines of credit. These regulations specify the information FRFIs must disclose to consumers, when FRFIs must disclose the information, and in what manner.
  2. What are the key elements of these regulations?
    These regulations: 1) establish how the cost of borrowing shall be calculated; 2) specify the information FRFIs shall disclose to consumers; 3) specify how and when FRFIs shall provide disclosure to consumers; and 4) define the circumstances under which FRFIs must provide disclosure to consumers.
  3. How do these regulations affect Canadian businesses?
    FCAC expects FRFIs to establish policies and procedures to ensure compliance with these regulations.
  4. What is the timeline for implementation?
    These regulations were last amended in 2010.
  5. Where can I get more information?
    For questions regarding the Cost of Borrowing Regulations, please contact us.  

Access to Basic Banking Services Regulations (SOR/2003-184)

  1. What is the purpose of these regulations?
    These regulations require banks to open retail deposit accounts for consumers and cash Government of Canada cheques, unless certain conditions are met.
  2. What are the key elements of these regulations?
    These regulations: 1) set out the circumstances under which banks can refuse to open a retail deposit account; 2) outline the circumstances under which banks must cash Government of Canada cheques; and 3) list the acceptable pieces of identification required to open a retail deposit account or cash a Government of Canada cheque.
  3. How do these regulations affect Canadian businesses?
    FCAC expects banks to establish policies and procedures to ensure compliance with these regulations. 
  4. What is the timeline for implementation?
    ​​These regula​​​​​tions came into force in 2003, and were last amended in 2012.  
  5. Where can I get more information?
    For questions regarding the Access to Basic Banking Regulations, please contact us

Credit Business Practices (Banks, Authorized Foreign Banks, Trust and Loan Companies, Retail Associations, Canadian Insurance Companies, and Foreign Insurance Companies) Regulations (SOR/2009-257) 

  1. What is the purpose of these regulations?
    These regulations require FRFIs to adhere to certain minimum requirements related to credit card billing, express consent and debt collection.
  2. What are the key elements of these regulations?
    These regulations set out: 1) requirements for minimum grace periods on new purchases; 2) allocation of payments; 3) consent for increases in credit limits and to provide credit card cheques; and 4) debt collection practices.
  3. How do these regulations affect Canadian businesses?
    FCAC expects FRFIs to establish policies and procedures to ensure compliance with these regulations.
  4. What is the timeline for implementation?
    These regulations came into force in 2010.
  5. Where can I get more information?
    For questions regarding the Credit Business Practices Regulations, please contact us.

Disclosure of Charges (Authorized Foreign Banks) Regulations (SOR/99-278)

Disclosure of Charges (Banks) Regulations (SOR/92-324) 

Disclosure of Charges (Retail Associations) Regulations (SOR/2003-297)

Disclosure of Charges (Trust and Loan Companies) Regulations (SOR/92-328) 

  1. What is the purpose of these regulations?
    These regulations require deposit-taking institutions (DTIs) to disclose to their customers and to the public all charges applicable to deposit accounts. 
  2. What are the key elements of these regulations?
    These regulations: 1) specify the information DTIs shall disclose to consumers; 2) state how and when DTIs shall provide disclosure to consumers; 3) clarify the circumstances under which DTIs must provide disclosure to consumers; and 4) require DTIs to maintain a list of charges at each of their branches and on their websites. 
  3. How do these regulations affect Canadian businesses?
    FCAC expects DTIs to establish policies and procedures to ensure compliance with these regulations.
  4. What is the timeline for implementation?
    These regulations came into force in 1992.
  5. Where can I get more information?
    For questions regarding the Disclosure of Charges Regulations, please contact us.

Complaints (Banks, Authorized Foreign Banks and External Complaints Bodies) Regulations (SOR/2013-48) 

  1. What is the purpose of these regulations?
    These regulations establish measures to strengthen the dispute resolution framework for banks and authorized foreign banks. 
  2. What are the key elements of these regulations?
    These regulations: 1) formalize the transparency and accountability of the complaint handling process of banks and authorized foreign banks; 2) establish criteria for ministerial approval of external complaints bodies (ECBs); 3) establish criteria for maintaining that approval; 4) specify the obligations of banks and authorized foreign banks in respect of external complaints bodies.  
  3. How do these regulations affect Canadian businesses?
    FCAC expects banks, authorized foreign banks, and external complaints bodies to establish policies and procedures to ensure compliance with these regulations. 
  4. What is the timeline for implementation?
    The regulations came into force in 2013. 
  5. Where can I get more information?
    For questions regarding the Complaints Regulations, please contact us.

Negative Option Billings Regulations (SOR/2012-23)

  1. What is the purpose of these regulations?
    These regulations require FRFIs to obtain a consumer’s express consent before providing that consumer with a new primary or optional financial product or service. 
  2. What are the key elements of these regulations?
    These regulations: 1) require FRFIs to obtain a consumer’s express consent before providing that consumer with a new primary or optional financial product or service; 2) require FRFIs to provide disclosure about the optional financial product or service; and 3) set out the manner in which FRFIs must refund or credit the consumer if that consumer has cancelled an optional financial product or service.
  3. How do these regulations affect Canadian businesses?
    FCAC expects FRFIs to establish policies and procedures to ensure compliance with these regulations. 
  4. What is the timeline for implementation?
    These regulations came into force in 2012.  
  5. Where can I get more information?
    For questions regarding the Negative Option Billing Regulations, please contact us.

Access to Funds Regulations (SOR/2012-24)

  1. What is the purpose of these regulations?
    These regulations require DTIs to provide timelier access to funds for retail depositors and small and medium-sized enterprises and provide retail depositors with timelier access to the first $100 deposited by cheque. 
  2. What are the key elements of these regulations?
    These regulations reduce the maximum cheque hold period, subject to certain exemptions. Furthermore, these regulations provide consumers with access to the first $100 deposited by cheque.
  3. How do these regulations affect Canadian businesses?
    FCAC expects DTIs to establish policies and procedures to ensure compliance with these regulations.  
  4. What is the timeline for implementation?
    The regulations came into force in 2012. 
  5. Where can I get more information?
    For questions regarding the Access to Funds Regulations, please contact us.

Deposit Type Instruments Regulations (SOR/2011-98)

  1. What is the purpose of these regulations?
    These regulations ensure that consumers receive applicable disclosure when they purchase a financial product with a fixed investment period and a fixed or variable rate of interest. 
  2. What are the key elements of these regulations?
    These regulations: 1) define deposit type instruments; 2) specify the information FRFIs shall disclose to consumers; 3) define how FRFIs shall provide disclosure to consumers; and 4) define the circumstances under which FRFIs must provide disclosure to consumers.
  3. How do these regulations affect Canadian businesses?
    FCAC expects FRFIs to establish policies and procedures to ensure compliance with these regulations.
  4. What is the timeline for implementation?
    The regulations came into force in 2011. 
  5. Where can I get more information?
    For questions regarding the Deposit Type Instrument Regulations, please contact us.

Notice of Branch Closure (Banks) Regulations (SOR/2002-104)

Notice of Branch Closure (Cooperative Credit Associations) Regulations (SOR/2002-105)

Notice of Branch Closure (Trust and Loan Companies) Regulations (SOR/2002-106)

  1. What is the purpose of these regulations?
    The legislation governing banks, trust and loan companies, and cooperative credit associations requires those institutions to provide notice before closing a branch or having it cease to carry on certain activities. These regulations specify when and how notice must be provided to consumers and the FCAC Commissioner.
  2. What are the key elements of these regulations?
    These regulations: 1) specify when and how notice must be provided to the FCAC Commissioner; 2) specify when and how notice must be provided to consumers; 3) list exceptions to the notice requirements; and 4) set out the circumstances under which the FCAC Commissioner can require banks, trust and loan companies, and cooperative credit associations to convene and hold a meeting.
  3. How do these regulations affect Canadian businesses?
    FCAC expects banks, trust and loan companies, and cooperative credit associations to establish policies and procedures to ensure compliance with these regulations.
  4. What is the timeline for implementation?
    The regulations came into force in 2002.
  5. Where can I get more information?
    For questions regarding the Notice of Branch Closure Regulations, please contact us.

Prepaid Payment Products Regulations (SOR/2013-209)

  1. What is the purpose of these regulations?
    These regulations specify the information FRFIs must disclose to consumers, when FRFIs must disclose the information, and in what manner. These regulations also restrict certain business practices related to prepaid payment products.
  2. What are the key elements of these regulations?
    These regulations: 1) specify the information FRFIs shall disclose to consumers; 2) specify how FRFIs shall provide disclosure to consumers; 3) define the circumstances under which FRFIs must provide disclosure to consumers; and 4) restrict certain business practices related to prepaid payment products.
  3. How do these regulations affect Canadian businesses?
    FCAC expects FRFIs to establish policies and procedures to ensure compliance with these regulations.
  4. What is the timeline for implementation?
    These regulations came into force in 2014. 
  5. Where can I get more information?
    For questions regarding the Prepaid Payment Products Regulations, please contact us.

For more inform​ation 

To learn about upcoming or ongoing consultations on proposed federal regulations, visit the Canada Gazette and Consulting with Canadians websites.​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​

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