Sep. 15

The CRTC’s Wireless Code of Conduct: A Rundown of Your Rights

Canada Network

The CRTC's Wireless Code of Conduct: A Rundown of Your Rights

Great news for Canadians! No matter if you bought your phone with Rogers/Fido, Bell Mobility, Sasktel or Telus you are always protected under the Canadian Radio-Television and Telecommunications Comission’s (CRTC) Wireless Code of Conduct. Here’s a quick rundown of some of the important points that you should know:

  • No cancellation fees after 2 years
  • Limit on data and roaming charges
  • Unlocked cellphones
  • Trial period
  • Clear language

Cancellation of Cancellation Fees

Customers who purchased their phone at a reduced fee in exchange for a three year contract can now cancel their plan without a cancellation fee provided that they have completed at least 2 years of their contract. Those who started their contract before June 3rd, 2013 will be able to cancel without incurring a fee. Those whose contracts were signed between June 30th, 2013 and December 2nd 2013 will pay a cancellation fee of up to $50, or 10% of “the remaining monthly charges under your contract”– whichever is lower.

A Limit on Data and Roaming Charges

The Wireless Code of Conduct states that carriers may not charge more than $100 in roaming fees without the permission of the subscriber. So, for example, if you were on your honeymoon or a vacation and accidentally incurred $100 in roaming fees, you should receive a courtesy text message or email from your carrier requesting your permission to continue services (and charges). However the best way to avoid roaming charges completely is to always unlock your phone so that you can use a local SIM card while on your travels.

The same courtesy text or email will be sent to those who incur $50 of data over usage fees while using their home network covered area.

Unlocked Cellphones

Service providers are now obligated to unlock phones without restriction after 90 days of use OR if the customer purchased the phone in full. However, be aware that as the Code has not stipulated any fixed cost for the unlock service, carriers are still able to choose how much they charge.

Trial Period

Customers now have 15 days to test the service. Within 15 days and within certain usage limits, you may now cancel your service and return the phone at no cost if you feel your phone deal does not meet your needs.

And finally, Clear Language

Limitations must be written in clear language so that everyone can understand. All contracts must be laid out and presented in simple language terms. Additionally, changes to the key terms and conditions may not be made without your permission, and you have the right to refuse changes.

This is just a brief overview, there are many more terms and rights that you should read up on in order to familiarize yourself with the new Code, especially when dealing with your service provider. For more information on the Wireless Code of Conduct click here:

How does this affect you?
Let us know in the comments below!