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  • Kimberly Allen
    Post count: 4

    What are employer obligations when collections agencies ask HR to pass on messages for staff to return their collections calls?

    Rick Tobin
    Post count: 58

    In Canada, the regulations regarding debt collectors contacting employees at their workplace are somewhat similar to those in the United States, but they are governed by provincial laws as debt collection is regulated at the provincial level. Here are some general points regarding employer obligations and employee rights in this context:

    Provincial Regulations: Each Canadian province has its own set of laws and regulations governing debt collection practices. For example, Ontario has the Collection and Debt Settlement Services Act, while British Columbia has the Business Practices and Consumer Protection Act. These laws outline what debt collectors can and cannot do.

    Workplace Contact Restrictions: Like the FDCPA in the U.S., most Canadian provincial laws restrict debt collectors from contacting individuals at their place of work if it’s known that such contact is not allowed by the employer, or if it’s clear that such contact could harm the debtor’s employment.

    Privacy and Harassment Concerns: Employers in Canada have a duty to protect the privacy of their employees and to ensure a harassment-free workplace. Permitting debt collectors to contact employees at work could potentially infringe upon these obligations.

    Employee’s Request to Stop Contact: Canadian employees can request that debt collectors stop calling them at their place of work. Once this request is made, collectors are typically required to comply.

    Employer’s Discretion: Employers are not obliged to allow debt collectors to contact their employees at work and can set policies that prohibit such contact to maintain a professional and disruption-free work environment.

    Legal Advice: Given that the specific regulations can vary by province, it’s advisable for both employers and employees to seek legal advice if there are concerns or uncertainties regarding debt collection practices.

    In summary, in Canada, employers are generally not required to allow debt collectors to contact employees at work and have the discretion to prohibit such contact to protect the privacy and work environment of their employees. Employees have the right to request that debt collectors cease contacting them at their workplace.

    HR Insider

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