Overview

It’s important to know your rights when you make a purchase, sign up for a membership or sign a contract. Learn about consumer rights and find the information you need to protect yourself and be consumer wise.

Learn about common scams, how to identify them, and what to do if you’ve been a victim of a scam.

Memberships and contracts

Know your rights when signing up for a membership or contract, and how to cancel a membership if you change your mind.

Signing and cancelling a contract

You have a right to cancel a contract within 10 days of signing up, regardless of what the contract says. Memberships and contracts must offer monthly payment options.

Gym memberships

You have a 10-day cooling-off period to cancel any membership contract to a gym, sports club, martial arts centre or dance studio. All contracts must end after 1 year but may be renewed.

Financial rights

Payday loans

You have 2 business days to cancel a contract for a payday loan for any reason and without penalty. A lender cannot charge more than $15 for every $100 you borrow or provide a second loan until the first one is paid in full.

Collection agencies

A collection agency must send a written notice by mail or email first and then wait 6 days before trying to demand or collect payment. While collection agencies are generally only allowed to contact you 3 times in a 7-day period, if you don’t answer a collection agency’s calls, and they do not leave a voicemail, it doesn’t count as contact.

Consumer reporting agencies

Consumer reporting agencies collect information from various sources — such as banks, credit card companies and mortgage companies — to create and maintain consumer reports. This information may be provided to businesses and individuals for certain purposes, such as determining whether to lend money or enter into a tenancy agreement.

You have the right to the free disclosure of all the information that a consumer reporting agency has about you in their files (excluding credit scores). You also have the right to dispute the accuracy or completeness of any of the information a consumer reporting agency has about you.

Shopping and entertainment

Know your rights when shopping online or buying event tickets. Learn about refund policies and check for additional charges.

Online shopping

Never use a public Wi-Fi network when shopping online. The online confirmation page must show you an itemized list of your purchases before you complete your payment, and you must be emailed a final receipt within 15 days.

Buying tickets to concerts or events in Ontario

Before you buy, make an informed decision about how much you want to pay.

Ticket businesses must display the face value and total price of the ticket, including any fees, service charges and taxes, as well as the seat location. All amounts must be listed and charged in Canadian currency.

Resale tickets

If buying a resale ticket, have the seller give you either a written money-back guarantee if you cannot use the ticket to access the event, or a written confirmation from the original buyer that the ticket is valid.

Avoid buying a resale ticket if either a money-back guarantee or a confirmation of the ticket’s validity is not available.

Home and car

Know your rights when making big purchases, home renovations and buying a vehicle.

Home renovations and repairs

A contractor cannot charge you more than 10% above the estimate cost, unless you and your contractor agreed that the scope of the project changed, and they provide a new contract.

Hiring a roofer

Make sure to get a written estimate, check your roofer’s references and don’t pay more than 10% for a down payment. You have 10 days to cancel a signed contract with a roofer without penalty.

Hiring a mover

If your moving contract includes an estimate instead of a final price, you can’t be charged more than 10% above the estimate. You have 10 days to cancel a signed contract for any reason.

Buying a vehicle

The advertised price of a motor vehicle must include all charges and fees (except taxes) related to the purchase or lease of a vehicle.

Unless they’re invited to your home by scheduled appointment, a door-to-door salesperson is not allowed to sell you a major appliance, such as a furnace, air conditioner or water heater, softener, or purifier.

If you do make a purchase, make sure to get a detailed written contract with a cost estimate, completion date and specific information about the goods and services.

You have 10 days to cancel a signed contract for a new major appliance without penalty, and you can cancel an agreement within 1 year if the business or salesperson made a false or misleading statement about the contract.

Find more information about other consumer rights.