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Status of the Artist Act (S.C. 1992, c. 33)

Act current to 2021-04-05 and last amended on 2017-06-19. Previous Versions

Status of the Artist Act

S.C. 1992, c. 33

Assented to 1992-06-23

An Act respecting the status of the artist and professional relations between artists and producers in Canada

Her Majesty, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate and House of Commons of Canada, enacts as follows:

Short Title

Marginal note:Short title

 This Act may be cited as the Status of the Artist Act.

PART IGeneral Principles

Proclamation and Policy concerning the Status of the Artist

Marginal note:Proclamation

 The Government of Canada hereby recognizes

  • (a) the importance of the contribution of artists to the cultural, social, economic and political enrichment of Canada;

  • (b) the importance to Canadian society of conferring on artists a status that reflects their primary role in developing and enhancing Canada’s artistic and cultural life, and in sustaining Canada’s quality of life;

  • (c) the role of the artist, in particular to express the diverse nature of the Canadian way of life and the individual and collective aspirations of Canadians;

  • (d) that artistic creativity is the engine for the growth and prosperity of dynamic cultural industries in Canada; and

  • (e) the importance to artists that they be compensated for the use of their works, including the public lending of them.

Marginal note:Policy statement

 Canada’s policy on the professional status of the artist, as implemented by the Minister of Canadian Heritage, is based on the following rights:

  • (a) the right of artists and producers to freedom of association and expression;

  • (b) the right of associations representing artists to be recognized in law and to promote the professional and socio-economic interests of their members; and

  • (c) the right of artists to have access to advisory forums in which they may express their views on their status and on any other questions concerning them.

  • 1992, c. 33, s. 3
  • 1999, c. 31, s. 192

 [Repealed, 2010, c. 12, s. 1774]

PART IIProfessional Relations


Marginal note:Definitions

 In this Part,


artist means an independent contractor described in paragraph 6(2)(b); (artiste)

artists’ association

artists’ association means any organization, or a branch or local thereof, that has among its objectives the management or promotion of the professional and socio-economic interests of artists who are members of the organization, and includes a federation of artists’ associations; (association d’artistes)


Board means the Canada Industrial Relations Board established by section 9 of the Canada Labour Code. (Conseil)


Minister means the Minister of Labour; (ministre)


party means

  • (a) in respect of the entering into, renewal or revision of a scale agreement or in respect of a difference in relation to the interpretation, application, administration or alleged breach thereof, the producer or the artists’ association, and

  • (b) in respect of a complaint made to the Board, the complainant or the person or organization that is the object of the complaint; (partie)

pressure tactic

pressure tactic includes

  • (a) a cessation of work or a refusal to work or to continue to work by artists or artists’ associations in combination, in concert or in accordance with a common understanding, and a slowdown of work or other concerted activity by artists or artists’ associations respecting the provision of their services, done to compel a producer to agree to terms or conditions of engagement, or

  • (b) the closing of a place of work, a suspension of production or a refusal to continue the engagement of one or more artists by a producer, done to compel artists, or to assist another producer to compel artists, to agree to terms or conditions of engagement; (moyen de pression)


producer means a government institution or broadcasting undertaking described in paragraph 6(2)(a), and includes an association of producers; (producteur)

scale agreement

scale agreement means an agreement in writing between a producer and an artists’ association respecting minimum terms and conditions for the provision of artists’ services and other related matters; (accord-cadre)


Tribunal[Repealed, 2012, c. 19, s. 532]

  • 1992, c. 33, s. 5
  • 2012, c. 19, s. 532


Marginal note:Binding on Her Majesty

  •  (1) This Part is binding on Her Majesty in right of Canada.

  • Marginal note:Application

    (2) This Part applies

    • (a) to the following organizations that engage one or more artists to provide an artistic production, namely,

      • (i) government institutions listed in Schedule I to the Access to Information Act or the schedule to the Privacy Act, or prescribed by regulation, and

      • (ii) broadcasting undertakings, including a distribution or programming undertaking, under the jurisdiction of the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission; and

    • (b) to independent contractors determined to be professionals according to the criteria set out in paragraph 18(b), and who

      • (i) are authors of artistic, dramatic, literary or musical works within the meaning of the Copyright Act, or directors responsible for the overall direction of audiovisual works,

      • (ii) perform, sing, recite, direct or act, in any manner, in a musical, literary or dramatic work, or in a circus, variety, mime or puppet show, or

      • (iii) contribute to the creation of any production in the performing arts, music, dance and variety entertainment, film, radio and television, video, sound-recording, dubbing or the recording of commercials, arts and crafts, or visual arts, and fall within a professional category prescribed by regulation.


Marginal note:Purpose

 The purpose of this Part is to establish a framework to govern professional relations between artists and producers that guarantees their freedom of association, recognizes the importance of their respective contributions to the cultural life of Canada and ensures the protection of their rights.

Freedom of Association

Marginal note:Freedom

 An artist is free to join an artists’ association and to participate in its formation, activities and administration.

Exclusions and Presumptions

Marginal note:Artist contracting through an organization

  •  (1) An artist is not excluded from the application of this Part simply by contracting through an organization.

  • Marginal note:Presumption for purposes of Competition Act

    (2) For the purposes of subsection 4(1) of the Competition Act,

    • (a) artists’ associations certified under this Part that were formed for the purpose of providing appropriate protection for the professional interests of the artists they represent are deemed to be combinations of employees, in relation to those activities of the association that are directed to achieving that purpose; and

    • (b) contracts, agreements or arrangements between or among two or more producers, whether made directly between or among them or through a corporation or an association of producers, pertaining to bargaining in respect of remuneration and the terms and conditions of engagement of artists, are deemed to be contracts, agreements or arrangements.

  • Marginal note:Employees excluded

    (3) This Part does not apply, in respect of work undertaken in the course of employment, to

    • (a) employees, within the meaning of the Federal Public Sector Labour Relations Act, including those determined to be employees by the Federal Public Sector Labour Relations and Employment Board, and members of a bargaining unit that is certified by that Board; or

    • (b) employees, within the meaning of Part I of the Canada Labour Code, including those determined to be employees by the Board, and members of a bargaining unit that is certified by the Board.

  • 1992, c. 33, s. 9
  • 1998, c. 26, s. 83
  • 2003, c. 22, s. 220(E)
  • 2012, c. 19, s. 533
  • 2013, c. 40, s. 466
  • 2017, c. 9, s. 47
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