What will Québec’s new French language law mean for business, hiring? – Reuters

Alexandre Fallon

May 27, 2022

Supporters of the recently passed Act respecting French, the official and common language of Québec, known as Bill 96, which will modify the Québec Charter of the French Language, believe the Act to be an extremely important measure to protect the French language in mostly English-speaking North America. However, the sweeping law faces vocal opposition from linguistic minorities, businesses, health-sector advocates, and Indigenous peoples, according to an article written by Allison Lampert and Steve Scherer for Reuters.

Following the growing frustration in Québec over the dwindling usage of the French language, the provincial government passed Bill 101 in 1977, which increased the presence of French in schools and businesses. The recently passed Bill 96 further increases the use of French, which has raised concerns for many Canadians who feel that they do not possess the resources to meet the new requirements.

Bill 96 also creates opportunity for lawsuits if French service is not given to the standards expressed in the new legislation. According to Osler partner Alexandre Fallon, the law will also apply to the e-commerce sites of businesses outside of Québec. The increased liability risk has caused some companies to consider halting service for Québec. “Many businesses looking at this say well, OK, I’m going to stop serving Québec clients because I cannot serve them 100% in French, so I’m not going to take the risk of being sued,” said Fallon.

The article goes on to detail more impacts of the new law. Read the full article, “What will Québec’s new French language law mean for business, hiring?” on the Reuters website, reported by Allison Lampert and Steve Scherer, which appeared online May 27th.