Law:Precious Metals Marking Act

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R.s.c., 1985, c. P-19

An Act respecting the marking of articles containing precious metals


Contents

Short Title

Short title

1. This Act may be cited as the Precious Metals Marking Act.

R.S., c. P-19, s. 1.


Interpretation

Definitions

2. In this Act,

“apply”

« appliquer »

“apply”, in relation to a mark, includes any application or attachment thereof to, or any use thereof on, in connection with or in relation to

(a) an article,

(b) anything attached to an article,

(c) anything to which an article is attached,

(d) anything in or on which an article is, or

(e) anything so used or placed as to lead to a reasonable belief that the mark thereon is meant to be taken as a mark on an article;

“article”

« article »

“article” means any article of merchandise, and includes any portion of any article of merchandise, whether a distinct part thereof or not, other than an article or a part thereof designated by the regulations;

“Commissioner”

« commissaire »

“Commissioner” means the Commissioner of Competition appointed under the Competition Act;

“dealer”

« commerçant »

“dealer” means a person who is a manufacturer or an importer of any article to which this Act applies and any person who traffics by wholesale or retail in any such article and includes any director, manager, officer or agent of that person;

“inspector”

« inspecteur »

“inspector” means an inspector appointed or designated in accordance with section 6;

“mark”

« marque »

“mark” includes any mark, sign, device, imprint, stamp, brand, label, ticket, letter, word or figure;

“Minister”

« ministre »

“Minister” means such member of the Queen’s Privy Council for Canada as is designated by the Governor in Council as the Minister for the purposes of this Act;

“plated article”

« article plaqué »

“plated article” means an article composed of any substance on the surface of which a layer or plating of a precious metal is deposited or plated by means of a chemical, electrical, mechanical or metallurgica process or by means of a combination of any of those processes, and an article composed of an inferior metal to the surface of which a covering or sheeting of a precious metal is fixed by brazing, soldering or by any mechanical means;

“precious metal”

« métal précieux »

“precious metal” means gold, palladium, platinum and silver and an alloy of any of those metals and any other metal and an alloy thereof that is designated by the regulations as a precious metal for the purposes of this Act;

“precious metal article”

« article de métal précieux »

“precious metal article” means an article wholly or partly, or purporting to be wholly or partly, composed of a precious metal and includes a plated article, and the word "article" when used in association with the name of a precious metal has a corresponding meaning;

“quality mark”

« marque de qualité »

“quality mark” means a mark indicating or purporting to indicate the quality, quantity, fineness, weight, thickness, proportion or kind of precious metal in an article;

“sell”

« vendre »

“sell” includes

(a) sell, offer for sale, expose for sale and have in possession for sale,

(b) distribute or offer, whether as a premium or prize, and

(c) display in such manner as to lead to a reasonable belief that the article so displayed is intended for sale.

R.S., 1985, c. P-19, s. 2; 1999, c. 2, s. 48.


Marking

Unauthorized markings

3. Except as authorized by this Act, no dealer shall apply to an article, or bring into Canada an article that has applied to it, a mark that suggests or indicates that the article is a precious metal article.

R.S., c. P-19, s. 3.

When quality mark may be applied

4. (1) A quality mark that truly and correctly indicates the quality of the precious metal of which an article is in whole or in part composed may be applied to the article if the precious metal content of the article and the quality of the precious metal content meet standards provided in the regulations with respect to that precious metal.

Quality marks and manner of application

(2) A quality mark applied to a precious metal article shall be a mark authorized by the regulations for use in association with the precious metal of which the article is in whole or in part composed and shall be applied in a manner authorized by the regulations.

Trade-mark to be applied

(3) Where a quality mark is applied to a precious metal article in accordance with this section, a mark that is a registered trade-mark within the meaning of the Trade-marks Act, or in respect of which an application for registration that is acceptable to the Minister has been filed in accordance with that Act, shall be applied to the article in a manner authorized by the regulations.

Marks authorized by law of foreign country

(4) Where a precious metal article

(a) is hallmarked in accordance with the laws of the United Kingdom, or

(b) has applied to it by the government of any foreign country a mark authorized to be applied thereto under the laws of that country that truly and correctly indicates the quality of the precious metal of which the article is in whole or in part composed,

subsection (3) is not applicable thereto and a quality mark may be applied to the article in accordance with subsections (1) and (2).

Other marks

(5) A precious metal article to which a quality mark is applied or to which a mark described in paragraph (4)(a) or (b) is applied may also have applied thereto

(a) numerals intended to identify the article or pattern and not calculated to mislead or deceive;

(b) the name or initials of a dealer; and

(c) any other mark not calculated to mislead or deceive.

R.S., c. P-19, s. 4.


National Marks

Canadian mark on articles composed of a precious metal

5. (1) Where an article that is wholly manufactured in Canada is composed of a precious metal of a quality prescribed in the regulations and has a quality mark applied to it in accordance with section 4, there may be applied to the article, by a dealer authorized by an order made by the Commissioner under subsection (2), a national mark consisting of a representation of a maple leaf surrounded by the letter "C".

Order authorizing application

(2) The Commissioner may, by order, authorize any dealer to apply the national mark described in subsection (1) in accordance with that subsection.

R.S., 1985, c. P-19, s. 5; 1999, c. 2, s. 49.


Enforcement

Inspectors

6. The Minister may appoint or designate any person as an inspector for the purposes of this Act.

R.S., c. P-19, s. 6.

Powers of inspectors

7. (1) Subject to subsection (1.1), an inspector may at any reasonable time enter the premises of any dealer, require the production for inspection of any precious metal article on the premises of a dealer and seize any precious metal article that the inspector believes on reasonable grounds is marked otherwise than in accordance with this Act and the regulations.

Warrant required to enter dwelling-house

(1.1) Where any premises referred to in subsection (1) is a dwelling-house, an inspector may not enter that dwelling-house without the consent of the occupant except under the authority of a warrant issued under subsection (1.2).

Authority to issue warrant

(1.2) Where on ex parte application a justice of the peace is satisfied by information on oath

(a) that entry to a dwelling-house is necessary for any purpose relating to the administration or enforcement of this Act, and

(b) that entry to the dwelling-house has been refused or that there are reasonable grounds for believing that entry thereto will be refused,

the justice of the peace may issue a warrant under his hand authorizing the inspector named therein to enter that dwelling-house subject to such conditions as may be specified in the warrant.

Use of force

(1.3) In executing a warrant issued under subsection (1.2), the inspector named therein shall not use force unless the inspector is accompanied by a peace officer and the use of force has been specifically authorized in the warrant.

Retention of seized articles

(2) Any article seized pursuant to subsection (1) may be retained for a period of ninety days and, if before the expiration of that period any proceedings in respect of the article are taken under this Act, the article may be retained until the proceedings are finally disposed of.

R.S., 1985, c. P-19, s. 7; R.S., 1985, c. 31 (1st Supp.), s. 19.

Certificate to be produced

8. (1) The Commissioner shall furnish every inspector with a certificate of his designation as an inspector and on entering the premises of any dealer an inspector shall, if required to do so, produce the certificate to the person in charge of those premises.

Assistance to inspectors

(2) A dealer or the person appearing to be in charge of the premises of a dealer and every person found therein shall, if requested to do so by an inspector, give an inspector all reasonable assistance to enable him to carry out his duties and functions under this Act and the regulations and shall furnish him with any information he may reasonably require with respect to any article found in the premises.

Obstruction of inspectors

(3) No person shall obstruct or hinder an inspector engaged in carrying out his duties and functions under this Act and the regulations.

False statements

(4) No person shall knowingly make a false or misleading statement either orally or in writing to an inspector engaged in carrying out his duties and functions under this Act and the regulations.

R.S., 1985, c. P-19, s. 8; 1999, c. 2, s. 49.


Regulations

Regulations

9. The Governor in Council may make regulations

(a) designating articles and parts of articles that are exempt from the application of this Act;

(b) designating parts of articles that are exempt from assay for the purposes of this Act;

(c) designating any metal and any alloy thereof to be a precious metal for the purposes of this Act;

(d) designating quality marks that may be applied to plated articles and quality marks that may be applied to other precious metal articles;

(e) prescribing marks indicating the nature of the base metal content of a plated article and prescribing the circumstances in which the use of those marks is required;

(f) establishing minimum precious metal content and quality standards and precious metal quality tolerances in respect of precious metal articles to which quality marks may be applied;

(g) prescribing the methods by which quality marks and trade-marks may be applied to precious metal articles;

(h) prescribing the meaning to be attributed to quality marks designated pursuant to paragraph (d); and

(i) with respect to any other matter concerning which he deems regulations necessary or desirable to carry out the purposes and provisions of this Act.

R.S., c. P-19, s. 9.


Offences And Punishment

Offences and punishment

10. (1) Every dealer who

(a) applies to a precious metal article a mark not authorized by this Act or the regulations to be applied thereto,

(b) applies a mark to a precious metal article otherwise than in accordance with this Act and the regulations,

(c) omits or neglects to apply to a precious metal article any mark required by this Act or the regulations to be applied thereto,

(d) sells or imports into Canada a precious metal article to which a mark not authorized by this Act or the regulations has been applied or that is marked otherwise than in accordance with this Act and the regulations or that has not applied thereto any mark required by this Act or the regulations to be applied thereto,

(e) destroys, defaces or in any manner renders indecipherable any mark applied to a precious metal article in accordance with this Act and the regulations,

(f) applies to a plated article a mark that guarantees or purports to guarantee or induces or tends to induce a belief that the precious metal with which the article is plated will wear for a period of time, whether specified or not,

(g) sells or imports into Canada a plated article to which a mark described in paragraph (f) has been applied,

(h) prints, causes to be printed, issues, publishes, imports or in any manner makes use of any printed or written matter in the nature of an advertisement guaranteeing or purporting to guarantee or inducing or tending to induce a belief that the precious metal with which a plated article is plated will wear or last for a period of time, whether specified or not,

(i) in any advertisement of a precious metal article or in any publication related to a precious metal article uses any mark the application of which to the article is not authorized by this Act or the regulations, or

(j) in any manner not provided for in this subsection or subsection (2) contravenes or fails to comply with any provision of this Act or the regulations,

is guilty of an offence and liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding five hundred dollars.

Idem

(2) Every person who contravenes or fails to comply with any provision contained in subsections 8(2) to (4) is guilty of an offence and liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding five hundred dollars.

Limitation period

(3) A prosecution under subsection (1) may be instituted at any time within but not later than one year after the time when the subject-matter of the complaint arose.

R.S., c. P-19, s. 10; 1984, c. 40, s. 59.

Disposition of articles on conviction

11. (1) Every article in respect of which a conviction is had under this Act shall be broken, broken down or defaced and every part of the article, other than precious and semi-precious stones, watch movements and any other part designated by the regulations, is, on such conviction, in addition to any other punishment imposed, forfeited to Her Majesty and, subject to subsection (3), shall be disposed of in such manner and at such time and place as the Commissioner may direct.

Disposition of printed or written matter on conviction

(2) All printed or written matter in respect of which a conviction is had under this Act is on the conviction, in addition to any other punishment imposed, forfeited to Her Majesty, and, subject to subsection (3), shall be disposed of in such manner and at such time and place as the Commissioner may direct.

Protection of persons claiming interest

(3) Sections 74 to 76 of the Fisheries Act applies, with such modifications as the circumstances require, in respect of any article or printed or written matter forfeited under subsection (1) or (2) as though that article or matter were an article forfeited under subsection 72(1) of that Act.

R.S., 1985, c. P-19, s. 11; 1999, c. 2, s. 49.

Certificate of Master or assayer

12. In any prosecution under this Act, a document purporting to be a certificate of the Master or any assayer of the Royal Canadian Mint stating that he has assayed or examined an article and stating the result of his assay or examination is admissible in evidence and in the absence of any evidence to the contrary is proof of the statements contained in the certificate without proof of the signature or official character of the person appearing to have signed the certificate.

R.S., c. P-19, s. 12.


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