Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act (S.C. 2000, c. 5)

Act current to 2016-05-12 and last amended on 2015-06-23. Previous Versions

Marginal note:When access prohibited
  •  (1) Despite clause 4.9 of Schedule 1, an organization shall not give an individual access to personal information if doing so would likely reveal personal information about a third party. However, if the information about the third party is severable from the record containing the information about the individual, the organization shall sever the information about the third party before giving the individual access.

  • Marginal note:Limit

    (2) Subsection (1) does not apply if the third party consents to the access or the individual needs the information because an individual’s life, health or security is threatened.

  • Marginal note:Information related to paragraphs 7(3)(c), (c.1) or (d)

    (2.1) An organization shall comply with subsection (2.2) if an individual requests that the organization

    • (a) inform the individual about

      • (i) any disclosure of information to a government institution or a part of a government institution under paragraph 7(3)(c), subparagraph 7(3)(c.1)(i) or (ii) or paragraph 7(3)(c.2) or (d), or

      • (ii) the existence of any information that the organization has relating to a disclosure referred to in subparagraph (i), to a subpoena, warrant or order referred to in paragraph 7(3)(c) or to a request made by a government institution or a part of a government institution under subparagraph 7(3)(c.1)(i) or (ii); or

    • (b) give the individual access to the information referred to in subparagraph (a)(ii).

  • Marginal note:Notification and response

    (2.2) An organization to which subsection (2.1) applies

    • (a) shall, in writing and without delay, notify the institution or part concerned of the request made by the individual; and

    • (b) shall not respond to the request before the earlier of

      • (i) the day on which it is notified under subsection (2.3), and

      • (ii) thirty days after the day on which the institution or part was notified.

  • Marginal note:Objection

    (2.3) Within thirty days after the day on which it is notified under subsection (2.2), the institution or part shall notify the organization whether or not the institution or part objects to the organization complying with the request. The institution or part may object only if the institution or part is of the opinion that compliance with the request could reasonably be expected to be injurious to

    • (a) national security, the defence of Canada or the conduct of international affairs;

    • (a.1) the detection, prevention or deterrence of money laundering or the financing of terrorist activities; or

    • (b) the enforcement of any law of Canada, a province or a foreign jurisdiction, an investigation relating to the enforcement of any such law or the gathering of intelligence for the purpose of enforcing any such law.

  • Marginal note:Prohibition

    (2.4) Despite clause 4.9 of Schedule 1, if an organization is notified under subsection (2.3) that the institution or part objects to the organization complying with the request, the organization

    • (a) shall refuse the request to the extent that it relates to paragraph (2.1)(a) or to information referred to in subparagraph (2.1)(a)(ii);

    • (b) shall notify the Commissioner, in writing and without delay, of the refusal; and

    • (c) shall not disclose to the individual

      • (i) any information that the organization has relating to a disclosure to a government institution or a part of a government institution under paragraph 7(3)(c), subparagraph 7(3)(c.1)(i) or (ii) or paragraph 7(3)(c.2) or (d) or to a request made by a government institution under either of those subparagraphs,

      • (ii) that the organization notified an institution or part under paragraph (2.2)(a) or the Commissioner under paragraph (b), or

      • (iii) that the institution or part objects.

  • Marginal note:When access may be refused

    (3) Despite the note that accompanies clause 4.9 of Schedule 1, an organization is not required to give access to personal information only if

    • (a) the information is protected by solicitor-client privilege or, in civil law, by the professional secrecy of lawyers and notaries;

    • (b) to do so would reveal confidential commercial information;

    • (c) to do so could reasonably be expected to threaten the life or security of another individual;

    • (c.1) the information was collected under paragraph 7(1)(b);

    • (d) the information was generated in the course of a formal dispute resolution process; or

    • (e) the information was created for the purpose of making a disclosure under the Public Servants Disclosure Protection Act or in the course of an investigation into a disclosure under that Act.

    However, in the circumstances described in paragraph (b) or (c), if giving access to the information would reveal confidential commercial information or could reasonably be expected to threaten the life or security of another individual, as the case may be, and that information is severable from the record containing any other information for which access is requested, the organization shall give the individual access after severing.

  • Marginal note:Limit

    (4) Subsection (3) does not apply if the individual needs the information because an individual’s life, health or security is threatened.

  • Marginal note:Notice

    (5) If an organization decides not to give access to personal information in the circumstances set out in paragraph (3)(c.1), the organization shall, in writing, so notify the Commissioner, and shall include in the notification any information that the Commissioner may specify.

  • 2000, c. 5, s. 9, c. 17, s. 97;
  • 2001, c. 41, s. 82;
  • 2005, c. 46, s. 57;
  • 2006, c. 9, s. 223;
  • 2015, c. 32, s. 9.
Marginal note:Sensory disability

 An organization shall give access to personal information in an alternative format to an individual with a sensory disability who has a right of access to personal information under this Part and who requests that it be transmitted in the alternative format if

  • (a) a version of the information already exists in that format; or

  • (b) its conversion into that format is reasonable and necessary in order for the individual to be able to exercise rights under this Part.

DIVISION 2Remedies

Filing of Complaints

Marginal note:Contravention
  •  (1) An individual may file with the Commissioner a written complaint against an organization for contravening a provision of Division 1 or for not following a recommendation set out in Schedule 1.

  • Marginal note:Commissioner may initiate complaint

    (2) If the Commissioner is satisfied that there are reasonable grounds to investigate a matter under this Part, the Commissioner may initiate a complaint in respect of the matter.

  • Marginal note:Time limit

    (3) A complaint that results from the refusal to grant a request under section 8 must be filed within six months, or any longer period that the Commissioner allows, after the refusal or after the expiry of the time limit for responding to the request, as the case may be.

  • Marginal note:Notice

    (4) The Commissioner shall give notice of a complaint to the organization against which the complaint was made.

Investigations of Complaints

Marginal note:Examination of complaint by Commissioner
  •  (1) The Commissioner shall conduct an investigation in respect of a complaint, unless the Commissioner is of the opinion that

    • (a) the complainant ought first to exhaust grievance or review procedures otherwise reasonably available;

    • (b) the complaint could more appropriately be dealt with, initially or completely, by means of a procedure provided for under the laws of Canada, other than this Part, or the laws of a province; or

    • (c) the complaint was not filed within a reasonable period after the day on which the subject matter of the complaint arose.

  • Marginal note:Exception

    (2) Despite subsection (1), the Commissioner is not required to conduct an investigation in respect of an act alleged in a complaint if the Commissioner is of the opinion that the act, if proved, would constitute a contravention of any of sections 6 to 9 of An Act to promote the efficiency and adaptability of the Canadian economy by regulating certain activities that discourage reliance on electronic means of carrying out commercial activities, and to amend the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission Act, the Competition Act, the Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act and the Telecommunications Act or section 52.01 of the Competition Act or would constitute conduct that is reviewable under section 74.011 of that Act.

  • Marginal note:Notification

    (3) The Commissioner shall notify the complainant and the organization that the Commissioner will not investigate the complaint or any act alleged in the complaint and give reasons.

  • Marginal note:Compelling reasons

    (4) The Commissioner may reconsider a decision not to investigate under subsection (1), if the Commissioner is satisfied that the complainant has established that there are compelling reasons to investigate.

  • 2000, c. 5, s. 12;
  • 2010, c. 23, s. 83.
 
Date modified: