Wednesday, June 05, 2013

June 3, 2013


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CRTC Code will Complement Manitoba's Existing Legislation, Provide New Protections: Rondeau
The provincial government supports the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) proposed wireless code to enhance protections for all Canadians when it comes to cellphones and mobile devices, Healthy Living, Seniors and Consumer Affairs Minister Jim Rondeau said today.
“With so many Manitobans relying on cellphones in their day-to-day lives, families expect some fairness.  That’s why last year we created new rules to better protect consumers,” said Rondeau.  “We’re happy to see this approach being broadened to protect all Canadians.”
Like Manitoba’s cellphone legislation, the CRTC Wireless Code will now require that contracts:
  • be written in plain language,
  • include clear pricing information,
  • be given to consumers within specific time periods, and
  • prohibit changes to key terms and conditions without consumer consent.
The provincial government introduced its cellphone legislation to address issues that were within its provincial jurisdiction for cellphones.  In a letter sent to the CRTC in May 2012, the province encouraged the CRTC to review a number of consumer cellphone issues that fall under federal jurisdiction.
The CRTC’s Wireless Code will complement Manitoba’s legislation and further enhance protections in the marketplace by providing consumers with the right:
  • to cancel contracts at no cost after a maximum of two years, regardless of the length of agreement;
  • to limit extra data charges to $50 per month and international roaming charges at $100;
  • to have phones unlocked after 90 days or immediately if the phone was paid in full;
  • to pay no extra charges for a service described as unlimited;
  • to have services suspended at no cost if a phone is lost or stolen; and
  • to have the contract in an alternative format at no charge and a longer (30-day) trial period for anyone with a disability.
The CRTC Wireless Code will apply to new contracts starting on Dec. 2, 2013.
The Manitoba’s Consumer Protection Office will continue to work with Manitobans and the industry to ensure the new code meets the needs of both groups and will ensure ongoing communication with the CRTC and with the Commissioner for Complaints for Telecommunications Services, Rondeau said.
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