The Hearing Process

The PMPRB has a regulatory mandate to ensure that prices charged by patentees for their patented medicines sold in Canada are not excessive. Under the Patent Act and the Patented Medicines Regulations, patentees are required to file information on prices. While the Board makes every effort to promote voluntary compliance with its guidelines, it has the power, after a hearing, to order a reduction in the price to a non-excessive level and to enforce that order. The Board is also able to order a patentee to offset any excess revenues and, in cases where the Board determines there has been a policy of excessive pricing, to double the amount to be offset.

The Board acts as a neutral arbiter between parties before the Board, principally the Board Staff and the patentee although they may also include statutory parties, Minister of Industry, provincial and territorial ministers of health, and any other person or group given standing by the Board. The Board makes its decision based upon the evidence and arguments presented.

The objectives of the Board's hearing process are to:

  • provide the patentee with a reasonable opportunity to be heard
  • comply with the requirements of procedural fairness and fundamental justice as enunciated by administrative law generally, and the standards set out by the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms and the Canadian Bill of Rights
  • enable the Board to achieve its statutory objectives as efficiently, informally and economically as possible.

Hearings are public, and anyone is welcome to attend. For information on matters currently before the Board, click on Status of Ongoing Proceedings.

For complete documentation on matters before the Board, past and present, please visit the Listing of Board Decisions.

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