TORONTO, ONTARIO–(Marketwired – Nov. 27, 2013) – EnerCare Inc. (TSX:ECI) and EnerCare Solutions Inc. (collectively, "EnerCare") are pleased to report that the Stronger Protection for Ontario Consumers Act, 2013 ("Bill 55") today passed third reading in the Ontario Legislature. EnerCare has been a strong supporter of the Ontario Government in its quest to substantially enhance protection for Ontario consumers with its introduction of Bill 55. Bill 55 is a direct response to aggressive and deceptive door-to-door water heater rental sales, which ranked second on the Ontario Ministry of Consumer Services' consumer complaints list in both 2012 and 2011.
Among other things, Bill 55:
- Doubles the existing 10-day cooling-off period to 20 days, providing consumers with more time to consider their decision;
- Bans the delivery and installation of water heaters during the new 20-day cooling-off period;
- Provides new consumer protection when the rules are not followed, such as requiring the supplier to reimburse the customer for all cancellation, return or removal fees when the 20-day cooling-off period is not observed; and
- Gives enhanced authority to the Minister to make regulations governing supplier conduct and agreement content, such as a requirement that companies confirm sales by making scripted and recorded telephone calls to the customer.
EnerCare expects Bill 55 to receive Royal Assent shortly and looks forward to it being proclaimed into force along with the corresponding regulations.
"EnerCare applauds the Ontario government's commitmen t to enhancing consumer protection and looks forward to working with the Ministry in developing the regulations to protect Ontario consumers from the bad actors in our marketplace," said John Macdonald, President and CEO.
EnerCare believes that Bill 55 is a strong enhancement in consumer protection that will provide necessary protection for its customers and greatly assist with EnerCare's continued efforts to combat attrition in its water heater business.
A copy of Bill 55 can be found at http://www.ontla.on.ca/bills/bills-files/40_Parliament/Session2/b055.pdf and background on Bill 55 can be found on the Ministry of Consumer Services website at http://news.ontario.ca/mcs/en/2013/04/strengthening-protection-against-aggressive-door-to-door-sales.html.
Certain statements in this news release are forward-looking statements, which reflect management's expectation regarding EnerCare's growth, results of operations, performance, business prospects and opportunities. Such forward-looking information reflects management's current beliefs and is based on information available to them and/or assumptions management believes are reasonable. Many factors could cause results to differ materially from the results discussed in the forward-looking information. These factors include risks associated with the failure to realize the anticipated benefits of Bill 55. Although the forward-looking information is based on what management believes to be reasonable assumptions, EnerCare cannot assure investors that actual results will be consistent with this forward-looking information. Except as required by applicable securities laws, EnerCare does not intend and does not assume any oblig ation to update or revise the forward-looking information, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.
ABOUT ENERCARE INC. AND ENERCARE SOLUTIONS INC.
EnerCare Inc. and EnerCare Solutions Inc. own a portfolio of approximately 1.2 million installed water heaters and other assets, rented primarily to residential customers in Ontario. EnerCare Inc. also owns EnerCare Connections Inc., a leading sub-metering company, with metering contracts for condominium and apartment suites in Ontario, Alberta and elsewhere in Canada.
Additional information regarding EnerCare Inc. and EnerCare Solutions is available on SEDAR at www.sedar.com or through EnerCare's website at http://www.enercareinc.com. Information on the sub-metering business is also available at www.enercare.ca.
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