Verify Credit of Tenant Application by bgi75182

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									     Québec’s Private Sector
         Legislation on the
Protection of Personal Information,
               1994
          February 14, 2003
                                        by
                         Jennifer Stoddart,
                    President, Commission
                  d’accès à l’information du
                                    Québec
  Adopted in order to
conform to the standard
         of the
  European Directive.
         Presentation
1)   Contents
2)   Interpretation
3)   Experience enforcement
Contents
           Only one of several laws regulating
                  personal information
           1) Québec Civil Code, 1994
           2) Québec Charter Rights, 1975
           3) Public sector legislation, 1982 - covers
              governments, schools, municipalities,
              subsidiaries of public bodies, hospitals, etc.
              Precedence over other legislation, s. 94
           4) Many public sector laws have even stricter
              privacy standards - laws on health
              information, youth protection, fiscal
              information
           5) Law on legal framework for information
              technology, 2001.
Interpretation
          What is an enterprise? (art. 1525,
           CcQ)
            “the carrying on by one or more persons of an
            organised economic activity (…) whether or not it
            is commercial in nature (…)”
             - does cover any kind of enterprise such as
               video club, insurance companies, medical
               clinics.
                 (Girard v. Ass. courtiers assurances C.Q. 1997)
             - does not cover the activities of
               professional bodies, religious organisations.
                 (i.e. Québec Bar, Order of pharmacists, etc.;
                 Whitehouse v. Ordre des pharmaciens, CAI
                 1995)
Contents


           Application
           “to a person in the course of carrying on
             an enterprise”, 1525 CcQ.
              - physical or moral person
              - insurance companies
              - video club
              - medical clinics
              - not religious bodies
Contents
           Rules for Collecting, Using and
           Retaining Personal Information
           • Collect only information necessary
             for the object of the file (art. 5)
           • Collect from person concerned
             except where third party collection
             authorized
             - where not possible otherwise
             - necessary to check accuracy (art. 6)
           • Inform person concerned of
             existence & use of file (art. 8)
Contents

           Rules for Communicating
               to Third Parties

           • Keep file confidential & up-to-date
             (art. 10, 11)
           • Consent for use other than object
             of file must be manifest, free &
             enlightened (art. 13, 14)
Contents

           Rules for Communicating
               to Third Parties
           • Without consent to (art. 18):
             – own lawyer
             – judicial proceedings
             – health and safety
             – collective bargaining agreement,
               etc.
Contents


           Rules for Access to One’s
                   Own Files
           • Must confirm existence files +
             give access (art. 27)
           • Inform public of right to access
             (art. 29)
           • If refusal, written reasons +
             recourses (art. 34)
Contents


           Rules for Nominative Lists
           • With client + employee names for
             commercial & philanthropic uses
             only
           • But valid opportunity to refuse
             (art. 22 & 23)
           • General rule: give valid
             opportunity to refuse use of
             personal information (art. 23)
Contents

           Rules for Nominative Lists
           Direct marketing

           - User must identify himself +
             inform concerned person of right
             to delete (art. 24)

           - General right to have information
             deleted (art. 25)
Interpretation


  Application
Interpretation
                 What does it change for
                      enterprises?
          • Revision of the kind of personal
            information collected. Question of
            necessity
          • Revision of consent forms (art. 14)
          • Revision of the rules surrounding
            confidentiality and security
          • Ensuring access and correction of
            file
          • Develop privacy policy
Interpretation

                 What does it change for
                      the citizens?
           • Assure a better confidentiality of
             personal information
           • Facilitate access
           • Rights of access and correction of
             own file
Interpretation




           Health information
            - no automatic access by
            employer to employees’ medical
            file
             - right of access to information in
             one’s file does not mean rewriting
             medical opinions
Interpretation




          - Relatively little litigation
          - Few appellate court decisions
          - Nearly 600 decisions on private
            sector
Interpretation

          Housing
          Issues before Québec Court
          - what personal information can be
            collected in order to approve tenant
            application? (S.I.N., tax return)
          Context: how to verify credit worthiness of
           tenants in tight housing market?
          Attempts to legislate minimum legal
            collection of information shelved.
Interpretation



                   Contested issues

          - Expert evidence
          - Access to what material on file
          - Data for research
          - Appropriate forum
Interpretation




           - Access by individual to internal memos
             and notes in file created by company is
             personal information.
             (Stébenne v. Assurance-Vie Desjardins,
             C.A. 2001).
Interpretation




           - No transfer of personal information when
             business transferred.
             (Desjardins v. Groupe Lyras & Godard,
             CAI 2002)
Experience Enforcement
Powers of the Commission
• Examination of disagreement and
  rectification along with powers to
  issue orders
• Investigation of complaints
• Annual Report to the National
  Assembly
• Five-Year Report
• Registration of personal information
  agents
• Power to take penal actions
Experience Enforcement


          Majority of complaints settled
          Examples of complaints:
         • Copy of proof of identity for purchase by
           credit card unwarranted
         • Landlord demands copy of prospective
           tenant’s income tax statement
         • Punch numbers of employees posted at
           work to illustrate productivity
Experience Enforcement



        - Rate of compliance hard to
          estimate
        - General collaboration with CAI by
          large firms
        - Problems: small firms, individuals
        - Coordinating with public sector
          legislation
Experience Enforcement




          - Adjudication of disagreement
            fairly efficient
          - Investigation of complaints needs
            updated approach
          - Would need important resources
            to thoroughly monitor compliance
      Thank you
 For more information, visit

www.cai.gouv.qc.ca

								
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