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This Act is current to November 24, 2021
See the Tables of Legislative Changes for this Act’s legislative history, including any changes not in force.

Ticket Sales Act

[SBC 2019] CHAPTER 13

Assented to May 16, 2019

Contents
Part 1 — Interpretation
1Definitions
2Interpretation
Part 2 — Prohibitions and Requirements
3Prohibition on certain software
4Disclosure of total price and face value
5General disclosure requirements for ticket service providers
6Secondary ticket sale
7Secondary ticket seller identity disclosure
8Prohibition in respect of related primary and secondary ticket sellers
9Prohibition in respect of sale of tickets not in possession or control
10Incorporation or address
Part 3 — Court Proceedings
11Court action by ticket service provider or ticket purchaser
12Court action by director or other person
13Notice to directors
Part 4 — Inspections and Enforcement
14Inspections and enforcement
15Administrative penalties
16Consumer Advancement Fund
17Making and reconsidering determinations
Part 5 — Administration
18Director and delegation
19Administration
Part 6 — Offences and Penalties
20Offences
21Penalties
22Compensation to ticket purchaser
23Limitation period
Part 7 — General
24Service
25Publication by director
26Confidentiality
Part 8 — Regulations
27General power to make regulations
28Administrative penalties
29Authority in relation to regulations
30Commencement

Part 1 — Interpretation

Definitions

1   In this Act:

"action" includes proceedings brought in the Civil Resolution Tribunal under the Civil Resolution Tribunal Act;

"administrative authority" means the Business Practices and Consumer Protection Authority established under the Business Practices and Consumer Protection Authority Act;

"court" includes the Civil Resolution Tribunal under the Civil Resolution Tribunal Act;

"director" means the individual or administrative authority designated under section 18 [director and delegation] as a director;

"face value", in respect of a ticket, means the sum of the base price and any mandatory fees and service charges paid by a ticket purchaser when the ticket was purchased from the primary ticket seller, excluding any applicable taxes;

"inspector" means

(a) a director, or

(b) a person designated as an inspector under section 176 [inspector] of the Business Practices and Consumer Protection Act;

"primary ticket seller" means a person, other than a secondary ticket seller, who is engaged in the business of making tickets available for sale, including any of the following persons if they make tickets to an event available for sale:

(a) an owner of the place where the event is held;

(b) a promoter of the event;

(c) an agent of a person referred to in paragraph (a) or (b);

"secondary ticket seller" means a person who is engaged in the business of making available for sale tickets that were originally made available for sale by a primary ticket seller;

"secondary ticketing platform" means a website, online service, electronic application, print publication, physical location or other prescribed method that facilitates the sale of tickets by providing ticket sellers, other than primary ticket sellers, with a venue to make their tickets available for sale;

"secondary ticketing platform operator" means a person who owns or controls a secondary ticketing platform;

"ticket" means any card, pass, document or thing, whether in electronic form or otherwise, that entitles the holder to admission to a recreational, sporting or cultural event, or other prescribed event, in British Columbia;

"ticket purchaser" means a person who participates as a purchaser in a transaction involving the sale of a ticket;

"ticket service provider" means

(a) a primary ticket seller,

(b) a secondary ticket seller, or

(c) a secondary ticketing platform operator;

"total price", in respect of a ticket, means the sum of the ticket's base price, any fees and service charges and any applicable taxes.

Interpretation

2   (1) If a provision of the Business Practices and Consumer Protection Act applies for the purposes of this Act,

(a) a reference in the provision to "this Act" must be read as a reference to "the Ticket Sales Act", and

(b) a reference in the provision to "the regulations" must be read as a reference to "the regulations enacted under the Ticket Sales Act".

(2) Subject to this section, if a word or phrase used in a provision of the Business Practices and Consumer Protection Act that applies for the purposes of this Act is defined in the Business Practices and Consumer Protection Act, or in the regulations enacted under that Act, the word or phrase has the same meaning as defined in or under that Act.

(3) If a word or phrase is used in a provision of the Business Practices and Consumer Protection Act that applies for the purposes of this Act and is defined in this Act or the regulations under this Act, the word or phrase has the same meaning as defined in or under this Act.

Part 2 — Prohibitions and Requirements

Prohibition on certain software

3   (1) A person must not use or sell software, including automated ticket purchasing software, intended to circumvent any of the following on a website, online service or electronic application of a ticket service provider:

(a) a security measure that is used to ensure an equitable ticket buying process;

(b) an access control system that is used to ensure an equitable ticket buying process;

(c) any other measure or control that is used to ensure an equitable ticket buying process;

(d) a prescribed measure, control or system.

(2) Subsection (1) does not apply to the use or sale of software that is intended

(a) to investigate a contravention of this or any other enactment,

(b) to engage in research to identify and analyze flaws and vulnerabilities of measures, controls or systems referred to in subsection (1) for the purpose of advancing the state of knowledge in the field of computer system security or assisting in the development of a computer security product, or

(c) for a prescribed research or educational purpose.

(3) A person must not knowingly make available for sale or facilitate the sale of a ticket that was obtained through the use of software described in subsection (1).

(4) A primary ticket seller must

(a) exercise reasonable diligence to detect the purchase of a ticket through the use of software described in subsection (1), and

(b) cancel any ticket the primary ticket seller reasonably believes was purchased from the primary ticket seller through the use of software described in subsection (1).

Disclosure of total price and face value

4   (1) A primary ticket seller who makes a ticket available for sale must ensure

(a) that the offer to sell the ticket

(i) discloses the total price of the ticket, and

(ii) includes a separately itemized list of any fees and service charges and of any applicable taxes, and

(b) that the face value of the ticket is printed on or is otherwise displayed on the ticket when it is issued to the ticket purchaser.

(2) A secondary ticket seller who makes a ticket available for sale must ensure that the offer to sell the ticket

(a) discloses the total price of the ticket charged by the secondary ticket seller and the face value of the ticket, and

(b) includes a separately itemized list of any fees and service charges imposed by the secondary ticket seller and of any applicable taxes.

(3) A secondary ticketing platform operator who facilitates the sale of a ticket must ensure that the offer to sell the ticket on the platform

(a) discloses the total price of the ticket offered for sale on the platform and the face value of the ticket, and

(b) includes a separately itemized list of any fees and service charges imposed by the secondary ticketing platform operator and of any applicable taxes.

(4) Any information that is required under this section to be disclosed or listed must be set out in a clear, prominent and comprehensible manner.

General disclosure requirements for ticket service providers

5   (1) This section applies to any ticket service provider who makes a ticket available for sale or who facilitates the sale of a ticket.

(2) The ticket service provider must ensure that any dollar amounts in the offer to sell the ticket are listed in Canadian currency unless the offer discloses that a different currency is used.

(3) The ticket service provider must ensure that the offer to sell the ticket discloses the location of the seat or standing area that the ticket entitles the ticket holder to occupy, if applicable.

(4) The ticket service provider must ensure that the offer to sell the ticket discloses any terms and conditions that apply to the ticket.

(5) The ticket service provider must ensure that the offer to sell the ticket discloses any other prescribed information.

(6) Any information that is required under this section to be disclosed or listed must be set out in a clear, prominent and comprehensible manner.

Secondary ticket sale

6   A secondary ticket seller who makes a ticket available for sale or a secondary ticketing platform operator who facilitates the sale of a ticket must provide the following guarantees to the ticket purchaser:

(a) a guarantee issued by the secondary ticket seller or the secondary ticketing platform operator of a full refund for the ticket purchaser

(i) if the event to which the ticket provides admission is cancelled before the ticket can be used,

(ii) if the ticket does not grant the ticket purchaser admission to the event for which it was issued,

(iii) if the ticket is counterfeit,

(iv) if the ticket does not match its description as advertised or as represented to the ticket purchaser,

(v) if the ticket is cancelled by the primary ticket seller under section 3 (4) (b) because the ticket was purchased through the use of software described in section 3 (1), or

(vi) in prescribed circumstances;

(b) any other prescribed guarantee.

Secondary ticket seller identity disclosure

7   (1) When making a ticket available for sale, a secondary ticket seller must disclose the following information in a clear, prominent and comprehensible manner:

(a) the seller's identity as a secondary ticket seller;

(b) the secondary ticket seller's name, location and contact information.

(2) A secondary ticketing platform operator who facilitates the sale of a ticket by a secondary ticket seller must ensure that the offer to sell discloses the secondary ticket seller's name, location and contact information.

Prohibition in respect of related primary and secondary ticket sellers

8   (1) A secondary ticket seller who is related to a primary ticket seller must not make a ticket available for sale unless the primary ticket seller originally made the ticket available for sale to the public.

(2) For the purposes of subsection (1), a primary ticket seller and a secondary ticket seller are related if a corporate, contractual or other relationship between them directly or indirectly results in an incentive for the primary ticket seller to withhold tickets for sale by the primary ticket seller so that the secondary ticket seller can make them available for sale instead.

Prohibition in respect of sale of tickets not in possession or control

9   A person must not make a ticket available for sale if the ticket is not in the person's possession or control.

Incorporation or address

10   (1) In this section, "accessible address" means an address that describes a unique and identifiable location in British Columbia that is accessible to the public during normal business hours for the delivery of documents.

(2) A ticket service provider must not make a ticket available for sale or facilitate the sale of a ticket unless the ticket service provider is

(a) incorporated under the laws of Canada or British Columbia, or

(b) maintains an accessible address.

Part 3 — Court Proceedings

Court action by ticket service provider or ticket purchaser

11   (1) Subject to subsection (2), a ticket service provider or ticket purchaser who has suffered a loss as a result of a person's contravention of a provision of this Act or the regulations may bring an action in a court against that person.

(2) If the court finds that the defendant in the action has contravened the provision, the court may do one or more of the following:

(a) order restitution of any money or other consideration given or furnished by the plaintiff;

(b) award the plaintiff damages in the amount of any loss suffered because of the contravention, including exemplary or punitive damages;

(c) make an order for specific performance against the defendant;

(d) make any other order the court considers appropriate.

(3) An order under subsection (2) (b) for exemplary or punitive damages may not be made if the defendant took reasonable precautions and exercised due diligence to avoid contravening the provision.

(4) If an action under this section is brought in the Supreme Court and that court finds that the defendant in the action has contravened a provision of this Act or the regulations, that court may, in addition to the powers set out in subsection (2), grant an interim or permanent injunction restraining the defendant from continuing to contravene the provision.

(5) A person must not bring an action under this section if an application to a court has been made under section 22 [compensation to ticket purchaser] by the person or on the person's behalf in respect of the same defendant and transaction.

Court action by director or other person

12   For the purposes of this Act,

(a) section 172 [court actions respecting consumer transactions] of the Business Practices and Consumer Protection Act applies, and

(b) references to "supplier" in section 172 of that Act must be read as references to "ticket service provider".

Notice to directors

13   (1) A person

(a) who brings an action under section 11 [court action by ticket service provider or ticket purchaser] must serve the directors with

(i) a copy of the notice of civil claim if the action was brought in the Supreme Court,

(ii) a copy of the notice of claim if the action was brought in the Provincial Court, or

(iii) a copy of the initiating notice if the action was brought in the Civil Resolution Tribunal under the Civil Resolution Tribunal Act, or

(b) who brings an action under section 172 [court actions respecting consumer transactions] of the Business Practices and Consumer Protection Act must serve the directors with a copy of the notice of civil claim.

(2) On being served under subsection (1) (b), a director, on application to the court, may intervene in the action as a party, on the terms and conditions the court considers just.

(3) The court may proceed with the action even if the directors have not been served under subsection (1).

Part 4 — Inspections and Enforcement

Inspections and enforcement

14   (1) An inspector may conduct an inspection for the purpose of determining compliance with

(a) this Act and the regulations,

(b) an order made by a director or an inspector under this Act,

(c) an undertaking, or

(d) a court order made under this Act.

(2) The following sections of Part 10 [Inspections and Enforcement] of the Business Practices and Consumer Protection Act apply for the purposes of this Act:

(a) section 150 [inspection powers];

(b) section 151 [inspection powers — additional powers of director];

(c) section 152 [inspection under warrant];

(d) section 153 [records or things retained];

(e) section 154 [undertakings];

(f) section 155 [compliance orders];

(g) section 158 [receivers and trustees];

(h) section 159 [order to freeze property];

(i) section 160 [payment into court];

(j) section 161 [notice filed in land title office];

(k) section 162 [application to court respecting property freezing order or filed notice];

(l) section 163 [application to court for disposition of property frozen].

(3) A director may file with the Supreme Court

(a) an undertaking, or

(b) a compliance order.

(4) An undertaking or compliance order filed under subsection (3) is deemed for all purposes to be an order of the Supreme Court and enforceable as an order of the court.

Administrative penalties

15   (1) After giving a person an opportunity to be heard, a director may impose, in accordance with the regulations, an administrative penalty on the person if the person contravenes one of the following:

(a) a prescribed provision of this Act or the regulations;

(b) an order made by a director or an inspector under this Act;

(c) an undertaking.

(2) If a corporation commits a contravention referred to in subsection (1), an officer, director or agent of the corporation who authorized, permitted or acquiesced in the contravention is also liable under this section, whether or not an administrative penalty is imposed on the corporation.

(3) The following sections of the Business Practices and Consumer Protection Act apply for the purposes of this Act:

(a) section 164 (2) to (4) [administrative penalties];

(b) section 165 [amount of penalty];

(c) section 166 [notice of penalty];

(d) section 167 [due date of penalty];

(e) section 168 [enforcement of administrative penalty];

(f) section 170 [limitation period].

Consumer Advancement Fund

16   (1) All amounts derived from administrative penalties under this Act must be paid to the Consumer Advancement Fund established under section 139 (1) of the Business Practices and Consumer Protection Act.

(2) Section 140 [payments from Consumer Advancement Fund] of the Business Practices and Consumer Protection Act applies for the purposes of this Act.

Making and reconsidering determinations

17   (1) In this section, "determination" means

(a) a notice imposing an administrative penalty under this Act, or

(b) a compliance order.

(2) The following sections of the Business Practices and Consumer Protection Act apply for the purposes of this Act:

(a) section 175 (4) [director];

(b) section 181 [reconsideration by director];

(c) section 182 (1), (5) and (6) [powers of director on reconsideration].

(3) A director may vary or cancel a determination if the director is satisfied that new evidence has become available or been discovered that

(a) is substantial and material to the determination, and

(b) did not exist at the time of the review or did exist at that time but was not discovered and could not through the exercise of reasonable diligence have been discovered.

Part 5 — Administration

Director and delegation

18   (1) The minister may designate as a director either or both of the following:

(a) an individual appointed under the Public Service Act;

(b) the administrative authority, if the Lieutenant Governor in Council has approved, for the purposes of this Act, an administrative agreement referred to in section 177 of the Business Practices and Consumer Protection Act.

(2) If the minister designates both an individual and the administrative authority as directors and both directors may carry out powers, functions and duties under this Act at the same time, the minister must specify in each designation

(a) the powers, functions and duties that the individual or administrative authority may carry out, and

(b) the restrictions on the carrying out of those powers, functions and duties.

(3) A director may delegate to a person or a class of persons any of the director's powers, functions or duties under this Act.

(4) The director's delegation must be in writing and may include any terms or conditions the director considers advisable.

Administration

19   The following sections of Part 11 [Administration] of the Business Practices and Consumer Protection Act apply for the purposes of this Act:

(a) section 174 [definition];

(b) section 176 [inspector];

(c) section 177 [administrative agreement with administrative authority required];

(d) section 178 [designation does not make administrative authority an agent of the government].

Part 6 — Offences and Penalties

Offences

20   (1) Section 5 of the Offence Act [general offence] does not apply to this Act or the regulations.

(2) A person who contravenes subsection (3) of this section or any of the following commits an offence:

(a) section 3 (1), (3) or (4) [prohibition on certain software];

(b) section 4 (1), (2), (3) or (4) [disclosure of total price and face value];

(c) section 5 (2), (3), (4), (5) or (6) [general disclosure requirements for ticket service providers];

(d) section 6 [secondary ticket sale];

(e) section 7 (1) or (2) [secondary ticket seller identity disclosure];

(f) section 8 (1) [prohibition in respect of related primary and secondary ticket sellers];

(g) section 9 [prohibition in respect of sale of tickets not in possession or control];

(h) section 10 (2) [incorporation or address];

(i) a prescribed provision of the regulations.

(3) A person must not do any of the following:

(a) supply false or misleading information to a person acting under this Act;

(b) refuse or fail to provide information as required under this Act;

(c) obstruct, hinder or interfere with an inspection under this Act;

(d) fail to comply with

(i) an order made by a director or an inspector under this Act,

(ii) an undertaking, or

(iii) a court order made under this Act.

(4) A person does not commit an offence under subsection (3) (a) if, at the time the information was supplied, the person did not know that it was false or misleading and, with the exercise of reasonable diligence, could not have known that it was false or misleading.

(5) Each day that an offence continues under subsection (3) (c) constitutes a separate offence.

(6) If a corporation commits an offence under this Act, an employee, officer, director or agent of the corporation who authorizes, permits or acquiesces in the commission of the offence also commits an offence, whether or not the corporation is prosecuted for the offence.

(7) In a prosecution for an offence under this Act, it is sufficient proof of the offence to establish that it was committed by an employee, officer, director or agent of the defendant, whether or not the employee, officer, director or agent is identified or has been prosecuted for the offence.

(8) Subsection (7) does not apply if the defendant establishes that the defendant exercised due diligence to prevent the commission of the offence.

Penalties

21   (1) An individual who commits an offence under this Act is liable to a fine of not more than $10 000 or to imprisonment for a term of not more than 12 months or to both.

(2) A corporation that commits an offence under this Act is liable to a fine of not more than $100 000.

(3) Despite subsections (1) and (2), the court may increase a fine imposed under this section by an amount of up to 3 times the court's estimation of the amount of monetary benefit acquired or accrued as a result of the commission of the offence.

(4) In addition to a penalty imposed under this section, a court that convicts a defendant of an offence under this Act may order, at the time the penalty is imposed, the defendant to pay to the Consumer Advancement Fund an amount of not more than $1 000.

(5) A director may recover the amount owing to the Consumer Advancement Fund under subsection (4) as a debt due to the Fund.

Compensation to ticket purchaser

22   (1) In addition to a penalty imposed under section 21, a court that convicts a defendant of an offence under this Act may order, at the time the penalty is imposed, the defendant to pay to a ticket purchaser, as compensation for pecuniary loss suffered by the ticket purchaser as a result of the commission of the offence, an amount not greater than the monetary jurisdiction specified in the Small Claims Act.

(2) A ticket purchaser, or the prosecutor at the request and on behalf of the ticket purchaser, may apply for an order under subsection (1), unless the ticket purchaser has brought an action against the defendant under section 11 [court action by ticket service provider or ticket purchaser] in respect of the same transaction.

(3) If the defendant does not comply with an order made under subsection (1)

(a) within the time ordered by the court, or

(b) within 30 days of the order being made, if no time is specified in the order,

the ticket purchaser may enter judgment in the Provincial Court by filing the order with the registrar of the Provincial Court hearing matters under the Small Claims Act in or near the place where the conviction was entered.

(4) A judgment entered in the Provincial Court under subsection (3) is enforceable against the defendant in the same manner as if it were a judgment rendered in that court in civil proceedings.

Limitation period

23   The time limit for laying an information for an offence under this Act is 2 years after the time when the subject matter of the proceedings arose.

Part 7 — General

Service

24   (1) Any notice or order required to be given or served by a director or an inspector under this Act is sufficiently given or served if

(a) delivered personally,

(b) sent by registered mail,

(c) sent by a prescribed method, or

(d) sent by another method if the director or inspector can prove receipt of the notice or order.

(2) When service is made by registered mail, the service is deemed to be made on the fifth day after the day of mailing unless the person on whom service is being made establishes that the person did not, acting in good faith, through absence, accident, illness or other cause beyond the person's control, receive the notice or order until a later date.

(3) Despite subsection (1), a court may order any method of service not listed in that subsection.

Publication by director

25   (1) A director may publish information respecting any of the following:

(a) an undertaking;

(b) an order made by a director or an inspector under this Act;

(c) the imposition of an administrative penalty;

(d) a court order made under this Act;

(e) a conviction for an offence under this Act.

(2) Without limiting subsection (1), a director may publish

(a) the name of a person against whom action referred to in that subsection is taken,

(b) the amount of any penalty, and

(c) the reason for the action taken or the nature of the contravention.

Confidentiality

26   (1) A person who is engaged in the administration of this Act or the regulations and who has custody of, access to or control over information or records under this Act must not disclose the information or records to any other person except

(a) if disclosure is for the purposes of the administration of this Act, the Business Practices and Consumer Protection Act or the regulations made under either of those Acts,

(b) with the consent of the person to whom the information or record relates,

(c) in court proceedings related to this Act, the Business Practices and Consumer Protection Act or other similar enactments of British Columbia, another province or Canada,

(d) if an enactment of British Columbia, another province or Canada requires the disclosure,

(e) to the person's counsel,

(f) to a law enforcement agency in Canada, or

(g) under an agreement with the government.

(2) The person referred to in subsection (1) is not, except in a proceeding under this Act, compellable to disclose or give evidence about information or records the person has custody of, access to or control over.

Part 8 — Regulations

General power to make regulations

27   (1) The Lieutenant Governor in Council may make regulations referred to in section 41 of the Interpretation Act.

(2) The authority to make regulations under another provision of this Act does not limit subsection (1).

(3) The Lieutenant Governor in Council may make regulations as follows:

(a) defining a word or expression used but not defined in this Act;

(b) exempting persons, events, venues or tickets from any provision of this Act or the regulations, establishing circumstances when the exemption applies and attaching conditions to the exemption;

(c) prohibiting or regulating the use by primary ticket sellers of measures that restrict the ability of ticket purchasers to sell or transfer tickets they have purchased;

(d) prescribing information or records that must be submitted to a director;

(e) respecting records, goods or things retained during an inspection and the detention or disposal of those records, goods or things;

(f) respecting any other matter for which regulations are contemplated by this Act.

Administrative penalties

28   The Lieutenant Governor in Council may make regulations as follows:

(a) prescribing persons who are subject to the imposition of administrative penalties;

(b) prescribing, subject to section 15 (3) (b), the amount of the administrative penalties that may be imposed;

(c) authorizing administrative penalties to be imposed on a daily basis for continuing contraventions;

(d) prescribing, in relation to a contravention described in section 15 (1), whether a notice imposing an administrative penalty must be cancelled if the person on whom it was served demonstrates to the satisfaction of a director that the person exercised due diligence to prevent the specified contravention;

(e) prescribing the consequences of failing to pay an administrative penalty, which consequences may include, but are not limited to, the imposition of additional penalties.

Authority in relation to regulations

29   In making regulations under this Act, the Lieutenant Governor in Council may do one or more of the following:

(a) define classes of persons, things or transactions;

(b) make different regulations for different classes of persons, things or transactions;

(c) delegate a matter to a person;

(d) confer a discretion on a person.

Commencement

30   This Act comes into force by regulation of the Lieutenant Governor in Council.