By Scott Hervey

If consumers in Ontario, Canada purchase goods from you over your website, you have until July 30, 2005 to prepare to for compliance with Ontario’s Consumer Protection Act of 2002 (CPA 2002).#160 The CPA 2002 has a very long reach, similar to California’s Data Security Law (See Business Data Management Practices – Fertile Ground For Liability).#160 The CPA 2002 applies to both companies located within Ontario and companies engaging in a transaction with a resident of Ontario.

Under the CPA 2002, U.S. companies conducting business with an Ontario resident over the Internet will have to provide its name and any other name it uses to conduct business, its address, and telephone number.#160 #160The company will also have to describe the goods in a fair and accurate manner, and provide a detailed breakdown on the price charged to the consumer (cost of goods, freight, tax, etc.) and fully explain payment terms.#160 #160

Under the CPA 2002, U.S. Companies will also have to provide the Ontario resident with a copy the agreement between the parties (e.g., a purchase agreement) within 15 days and provide the purchaser with opportunity to accept or decline and to correct any errors in the agreement.

If after July 30, a U.S. company fails to comply with the CPA 2002, the Ontario purchaser will have the right to cancel the transaction within 7 days after receiving a copy of the agreement.#160 If the Ontario purchaser never receives a copy of the agreement, the purchaser then has the right to cancel the transaction within 30 days after entering into agreement.#160