Government of Canada user fees


On , the User Fees Act came into effect with the aim of strengthening the elements of accountability, oversight, and transparency in the management of user fee activities. The Act lists requirements when proposing a new fee or amending an existing fee. Departments are strongly advised to review the User Fees Act in its entirety and to seek legal counsel when interpreting the Act's applicability or other implementation requirements.

Guidance on fee setting

The Report of the Auditor General examined fee management in selected departments and agencies. As part of that examination, the Auditor General recommended that Treasury Board Secretariat (TBS) update its guidance on the factors to consider in determining the amount to be charged for a fee. TBS supported the recommendation and, per its commitment, is pleased to issue the attached tool called Guide to Establishing the Level of a Cost-Based User Fee or Regulatory Charge.

The Guide describes a general process and key considerations that departments may find useful when approaching the exercise of establishing the level of a fee. This exercise is also known as pricing. It should be noted that the Guide focuses on the individual aspect of pricing as one step of the overall user fee implementation process. It should also be noted that in light of current litigation involving certain fees, the information contained in the Guide pertains specifically to cost-based user fees and cost-based regulatory charges.

Service standards

It is the policy of the government that those who pay fees for government services are entitled to fundamental information on the services being provided and any associated service standards. For more information on this, please refer to the link below


Reporting on external fees is a requirement of the User Fees Act and the Policy on Service Standards for External Fees. Templates have been developed to meet these reporting requirements under the Departmental Performance Reports and the Reports on Plans and Priorities.

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