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Things to know

Civil Code

  • Québec has a hybrid legal system - private law is subject to the Civil Code of Québec, while public law is interpreted pursuant to the common law.

Consumer protection

  • Québec has strong consumer protection laws, including rules that make it unlawful to include certain clauses in contracts with consumers and strong consumer warranties.

Promotional contests

  • Companies running contests wholly or partly in Québec must register the contest with the government, unless the contest is international in scope and not solely directed to participants in Québec or in Canada generally. This includes paying duties, posting security, and reporting the list of winners.

Language as a condition of employment 

  • Employers are prohibited from dismissing, laying off, demoting or transferring an employee for the sole reason that he or she is exclusively French-speaking.

Francization programs

  • An enterprise in Québec which employs more than 50 employees must register with the provincial language authority and, at the option of the authority, implement a “francization” program.

Other language rules

  • The Charter of the French Language sets out detailed rules regarding the language of commerce and business (see French language rules for more information).

Things to do

  • Ensure that your agreements, warranties and policies (including policies applicable to consumer warranties) are localized, taking into account the Civil Code of Québec, Québec’s consumer protection laws, and the Charter of the French Language.
  • Do not make knowledge of the English language a condition of obtaining employment unless required by the nature of the position.
  • Register promotional contests open to residents of Québec.
  • Ensure that you comply with the rules in the Charter of the French Language that govern the language of commerce and business.
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