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Ottawa Will Introduce Legislation to End ‘Unfair Practice’ of Paper Billing by Telecoms

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Industry Minister James Moore has released a statement today, proclaiming the Harper Government will end the telecommunications industry practice of charging for paper billing, with new legislation coming to enforce the change.

In a statement, Moore said the following:

More and more Canadians are finding a new charge appearing on their monthly bills, including their wireless bill. This fee is charged to those who receive their bill in the mail. Increasingly, many Canadians are being charged this new fee by companies from whom they have been receiving service for decades. We do not believe that Canadians should pay more to receive a paper copy of their telephone or wireless bill.

The Industry Minister went on to say the Harper Government will “continue to promote policies that support Canadian consumers and put more money back in the pockets of hard-working Canadian families.”

Yesterday the CRTC meeting with nearly a dozen telecoms over the issue of paper billing resulted in exemptions for specific Canadians in need, but on the whole, nothing else was agreed upon for the rest of the population.

Jean-Pierre Blais, Chairman of the CRTC, said the following in a statement yesterday “Many Canadians who will not benefit from the exemptions will be disappointed with the outcome so far,” but also praised “Cogeco Cable, MTS Allstream, SaskTel and Shaw Communications for not charging their customers for paper bills.”

So it looks like that paper bill you’ve been paying for will soon become available free of charge once legislation passes. Consider this a small victory for consumers that absolutely require paper billing and have been forced to pay for it over the years.

 

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  • Jay

    I would prefer they crack down on companies that refuse to send me an e-bill.
    I HATE mail, there is no way to filter and sort physical mail automatically -_-

  • Yes there is–it’s called a paper shredder 😛

  • The6ee6

    I am actually extremely happy for this legislation, eat fido, bell, rogers, telus, already charging us for some of the most expensive rates in the world for the most ghetto amount of data ever.

  • Jay
  • FragilityG4

    I’m happy for this … But I’m sure the telecoms will raise rates by ten dollars to make up for it ….

  • Steve

    Who the heck still receives paper bills? How about getting the big 3 to cut down on their insanely high data plans.

  • 1His_Nibs1

    What I’d like to see is the government force the guilty companies to refund said fees for those paper bills back to the consumers who were forced to pay them. Back in the day no one ever had to pay for a papper bill. Just another tactic these companies are using to gouge the customer for anything & everything. Snowball’s chance in hell I know but just a thought.

  • SV650

    Are they going to similarly legislate banks, gas and electric utilities, municipalities, etc in similar fashion, or are they only picking on the telcos?

  • FragilityG4

    I prefer paper bills … It’s easy to lose ebills in your inbox. I have all my paper bills on a spot on my counter, once paid they get filled away.

  • Scanner Pro + Dropbox ftw. It does take discipline though.

  • Joe

    Key point here is that e billing should be a voluntary credit – not the other way around where there is a fee for paper billing.

  • Steve

    Gary beat me to it, but cloud storage as well as local backup. Which is a major plus because all .PDF’s are all text searchable (or can be made so). PLUS all bills are stored and accessible online up to a year or so at Rogers, Shaw, etc. You really need to get with the times. Paper billing is a thing of the past.

  • FragilityG4

    Get with the times? Hahaha no thank you. I can’t put ebills on my counter. Cloud storage? Nah nothing wrong with a filing folder … Paper bills, regardless of what you think, are still very relevant even among the most tech savvy people.

  • Steve

    You do realize bills also get lost in the mail as well. I certainly hope you still aren’t mailing in cheques to pay your bills 😉 I’d say more so than email. BTW, the email is just a notification, not an attached bill. The actual bill is stored online. You can easily setup monthly notifications via app on your iPhone to pay your bills online. Point is, it eliminates piles of paper clutter and makes referencing past bills way more efficient, and fast. Paperless office FTW.

    See this video. I avoid mailed paper bills altogether though.
    http://www.johnchow.com/how-to-create-a-paperless-office-with-scansnap-and-evernote/

  • FragilityG4

    I pay electronically, be that as it may, I and many others prefer hard copies. I don’t expect you to understand or believe you can change my mind and vice versa. I personally don’t want to go down an e everything path. Imagine buying a car and they tell you “we emailed you the agreement”

  • Steve

    Fair enough. Let’s just hope your house does catch on fire. All those years of paper work, lost.

  • FragilityG4

    Oh yeah if my house catches fire that would be my first concern, forget my family I really need that phone bill from two years ago … By the way it’s more likely that your cloud storage would be compromised before a house burning down.

  • FragilityG4

    Do you have to pay for those paper bills? I haven’t seen any charges on mine. They’re “picking” on the guilty guys and predictably it’s the telecoms.

  • Steve

    Not going to happen with encryption, 2-step verification and common sense. Also, not only bills, but important documents as well. But go ahead, file away. Peace of mind and efficiency be damned.

  • FragilityG4

    Yeah cause encryptions have never been hacked … Anyway I’m not interested in pursing a discussion who wishes a fire on my house.

  • Steve

    Weak encryption yes. Strong, not possible. Like I said, common sense comes into play. BTW, the comment above should of read “NOT catch on fire”.. lol

  • FragilityG4

    You didn’t strike me as someone who wished ill will on others.

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