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The Québec Ombudsman's Info-nuggets

Two short articles a month are posted here on different aspects of the Québec Ombudsman, such as its role, how it can help you, recent interventions, the rights of citizens in their dealings with public services, and answers to your questions.


The ABCs of childcare services

With or without a permit, legal or illegal—how do we find our way through the maze of childcare services in Québec?


Vacation plans? Check the calendar…

Like to head down south to escape the winter? Be careful—SAAQ and RAMQ take the time you’re gone into account…


Home childcare: the fateful age of 18…

All home childcare services are subject to a rule whereby the occupants of the house who are 18 years old and over must provide an “attestation establishing that no impediment exists.” A police investigation is required that can...


You’re being charged $25 to have your record opened at a medical clinic. Is that normal?

Many users can’t make sense of which medical clinic services are free and which are billable.


Need help applying for social assistance?

In applying for social assistance, you can get a Department employee to help you.


Letter of refusal from a government department or agency: getting to the bottom of things!

If a government department or agency advises you that it has turned down your application for service, compensation, a subsidy or financial assistance, make sure you get an answer in writing.


You’re entitled to clear information

Can the Québec Ombudsman help you if you want to complain about services in your municipality?


Maternity leave and unexpected debt!

The QPIP has overpaid you, you point out the mistake, and you’re told that you were entitled to that amount. Should you rest easy?


In which circumstances are snowmobilers covered by SAAQ?

You have a snowmobile and you have a question as the snow starts to fly—am I covered by SAAQ’s public plan?


Choosing a private seniors’ residence?

Here’s a 15-question checklist to help you find one.


The Québec Ombudsman instead of the court

The following story shows that sometimes the Québec Ombudsman can save you costly legal fees.


The odometer reading off by 55,000 km

Keep your eyes peeled when you read a service receipt from SAAQ.


No service at this number…

Has it ever happened that a government services agent has been somewhat short with you on the phone?


A complaint against a community organization?

3,500: the approximate number of community organizations regarding which the Québec Ombudsman may process complaints and reports.


Home support: for whom?

The Québec Ombudsman has to regularly explain to the people who come to it for assistance that certain services have limits, and rightly so.


IVAC’s website: in need of updating

The Québec Ombudsman reminded IVAC of its duty to provide citizens with complete, legible and regularly updated information.


Can the Québec Ombudsman handle medical complaints?

Your complaint concerns a hospital pharmacist, dentist or physician. Can the Québec Ombudsman help you?


Reimbursement of funeral expenses in the case of violent death: a saga

A woman died under violent circumstances. Her half-brother planned on being reimbursed for the funeral expenses under a government program. Simple? Not!!


Which severity rating from SAAQ?

By digging deeper—well beyond the basics for the complaint at hand—the Québec Ombudsman managed to get $30,000 in compensation for a road accident victim.


When a public agency relies on hearsay...

A man learned that the Régie du bâtiment had refused to renew his contractor’s licence based on something an unidentified someone had said…


Health fees in the private sector: no reimbursement from the public system without prior agreement

The public system does not reimburse users who turn to private health services unless a prior reimbursement agreement exists.


New parents, make life easier!

A Directeur de l’état civil form intended to make the lives of new parents easier had the opposite effect…


Wherever you are…

The Québec Ombudsman can receive complaints about Québec public services from persons living in Québec or anywhere else in the world...


Best wishes for a speedy retirement!

The Québec Ombudsman intervened further to a complaint by an independent financial security advisor against the Autorité des marchés financiers (AMF). His problem—forms transmitted to the AMF that went missing and worrisome time...


Marathon for a parking sticker

Parking sticker application form sent to SAAQ. Two different types of handwriting, two colours of ink on the document. That's all it took to make things complicated...


Operation Rescue

After an accident that left a man seriously disabled, the Québec Ombudsman investigates off-road emergency intervention services.


Ambulance transportation: how much does it cost ?

Ambulance transportation is free, isn't it? No, but there are exceptions. Here is a short guide to the fees most people pay when it's time to settle the bill.


In Writing Please

Waiting for a CARRA, Revenu Québec, or CSST decision on money owed you? Make sure you get an answer in writing.


Earthworms: so much more than fish bait!

This is the story of a worm farmer who wants to be recognized as a farm producer.


Under the cloak...

Recently, a coat manufacturer was falsely found to have been associated with a tax fraud and received a proposed assessment of nearly $450,000 from Revenu Quebec, without being able to present its point of view. It turned to the...


Aftermath of the student strike

In 2012, the context of the student strikes greatly affected the operations of certain Québec CEGEPs and universities. A complaint to the Quebec Ombudsman illustrates one of the many puzzles.


Must the Québec Ombudsman announce its visits?

Are the institutions targeted for an investigation by the Québec Ombudsman warned in advance of visits by its representatives?


Parental insurance and the misadventures of a young father

The story begins with an application for paternity benefits. The catch is that the young father cannot provide one of the documents required...


Reimbursements cut by the CSST

The Québec Ombudsman has received several complaints from workers whose reimbursement claims have been unfairly reduced by the CSST.


Mistaken identity

The SAAQ informed a driver that her licence would be suspended. The decision was related to a traffic accident... in which she had never been involved!


Régie des rentes: how is the shared custody time calculated ?

Is a child's time in the custody of each parent calculated in nights, days or hours? Question asked to the Régie des rentes.


Telephone shambles

"Please choose from the following options." Sound familiar?


Double the omissions

Is your business entitled to cancellation of a penalty by the Registraire des entreprises?


Drug insurance: Do you know your obligations?

If you are eligible for a group drug insurance program, you must join it. It is mandatory. If you don't, you may find yourself in a difficult situation.


Asbestos in the walls?

People who have a dispute with a construction contractor can turn to the Régie du bâtiment for help. But there is little point unless the Régie acts on their request…


Deeply uneasy...

A simple matter of modesty…An elderly lady who was hospitalized objected to having a male orderly help her with her intimate daily care.


The watch is on for a gold watch

What’s the connection between the Québec Ombudsman and a gold watch that went missing at a hospital?


Dental surgery: The bill is cancelled…

Generally speaking, dental work is not covered by the public hospital insurance plan. But, as we know, there are often exceptions to the rule…


With or without gloves?

A worker applied to the CSST for an income replacement indemnity. Four months later…, nothing!


Excellent news for you!

Recently the Québec Ombudsman had the pleasure of telling a road accident victim that the SAAQ owed him more than $25,000.