Publications
September 2014

What works are subject to an Act respecting labour relations, vocational training and workforce management in the construction industry and its regulations?

By Jean-Philippe Desabrais Lawyer

Are you a contractor or sub-contractor seeking to fulfill a contract? Are you unsure about whether your employees must hold specific competency cards or whether the work is subject to the Act respecting labour relations, vocational training and workforce management in the construction industry (Act R-20) and its regulations?

The Commission de la construction du Québec (CCQ) is charged with overseeing the application of Act R-20 and its regulations, and its consultants can help you determine whether the works you are seeking to carry out is subject to the law. The consultants will know whether a licence from the Régie du bâtiment du Québec (RBQ) is required and whether your employees must hold specific competency cards.

In fact, the CCQ offers a service that provides information on the works which are covered by Act R-20 and its regulations. Simply send a description of the works, the client's name, the location of the job site, the context of the work and the contract specifications via fax to 514 736-6723 and the CCQ will advise you whether it considers that the works in question are covered by the Law.

Should you disagree with the CCQ's opinion on Act R-20 with regards to the work you must oversee or carry out, you may choose to contact a lawyer in order to pursue recourse under section 21 of the Act. Under such a recourse, a business or an individual involved in a CCQ salary claim who disagrees with the CCQ's opinion as to whether a given project is subject to Act R-20 may file a claim to have any such interpretation overruled.

Notwithstanding a contrary opinion from the CCQ, it remains possible that your business or employees receive a statement of offence. Indeed, the service offered by the CCQ does not constitute a legal opinion, and the agents who issue statement of offences are not bound by the information given out by their organization. To make sure you are compliant, it is always best to consult an attorney in such matters.