Competition Bureau Releases Draft Bulletin on Corporate Compliance Programs

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On April 8, 2008, the Competition Bureau released its Draft Bulletin on Corporate Compliance Programs (available online at: http://www.competitionbureau.gc.ca/epic/site/cb-bc.nsf/en/02618e.html), updating the Bureau's original Compliance Bulletin, released in 1997. Public comments on the document are being requested through May 26, 2008.

Much of the content of the original policy is found in the revised draft, although there are some new aspects as well. The new bulletin goes into greater detail on the importance and benefits of competition law compliance. The new bulletin also includes user-friendly suggestions throughout for business policies and procedures that meet the Bureau's requirements, and a basic Corporate Compliance Program template. Overall however, the document represents a refinement, but not a change in Bureau policy.

Like its predecessor, the Draft Bulletin sets out the Competition Bureau's view as to elements which should be contained in a Corporate Compliance Program, designed to minimize a firm's risk of violations of the Competition Act, the Consumer Packaging and Labelling Act, the Textile Labelling Act and the Precious Metals Marking Act (the "Acts")and discusses the implications of having or not having such a program.

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DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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