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Law Practice, Litigation

The flower of sin: Cannabis Regulation Act bans the sale in Quebec of any product containing a picture, logo, slogan or sign associated with cannabis

Oct 23rd, 2018

By Laurent Debrun and Morris Szwimer

Section 50 of the Cannabis Regulation Act makes it an offence for the operator of a business to sell or provide an object that is not cannabis if a name, logo, distinguishing guise, design, image or slogan which is directly associated with cannabis, appears on the object. For example, a person selling a t-shirt, a book or a record bearing a picture of a cannabis leaf could be accused of infringing the Act. The operator of a business who contravenes the Act commits an offence and is liable to a fine of $2,500 to $62,500. These fines are doubled for any subsequent offence. It is likely that this ban, which is unique to Canada, may be contested on the basis that it impedes freedom of expression or interferes with protected rights under the Copyright Act and the Trade-Marks Act.