Exclusions from Personal Information Protection Act

The Personal Information Protection Act dictates the personal information and privacy rules that govern private organizations in B.C.

These rules don’t apply to:

Some of these exclusions are governed by different privacy laws.

Excluded Organizations

Organizations excluded from the Personal Information Protection Act include:

Public Sector Organizations & Contractors

These rules don’t apply to public sector organizations, such as government ministries, municipalities, hospitals or universities. Third party contractors receiving or collecting personal information under the control of a public sector organization are also excluded.

Learn more about how public sector organizations protect personal information.

Federally-regulated Organizations

Federally-regulated organizations, such as banks, telecommunications companies, airlines, railways and interprovincial trucking companies, are excluded from these rules. This includes organizations that release personal information across borders for commercial purposes, such as selling or leasing client lists. 

Learn more about how federally-regulated organizations protect personal information.

Excluded Individuals

Individuals excluded from these rules include:

MLAs & Officers of the Legislature

These rules don’t apply to a Member of the Legislative Assembly or an Officer of the Legislature when the collection, use or disclosure of personal information relates to their official duties. For example, this exclusion includes the Auditor General, the Ombudsperson, and the Information and Privacy Commissioner.

Excluded Purposes

Purposes excluded from these rules include:

Personal or Domestic Purposes

These rules don’t apply when an individual collects, uses or discloses personal information for personal or domestic purposes. However, if personal information is collected, used or disclosed for commercial purposes then these rules do apply.

For example, personal holiday card mailing lists or home movies are excluded. However, personal information collected as part of a home-based mail-order business or wedding videography service is not excluded.

Journalistic, Artistic or Literary Purposes 

These rules don’t apply to the collection, use or disclosure of personal information for journalistic, artistic or literary purposes. This exemption reflects the right to freedom of expression for newspapers. However, the media is still responsible for how they collect, use or disclose personal information for other, unrelated purposes such as marketing.

Excluded Documents

Documents excluded from these rules include:

Courts & Judicial or Administrative Proceeding Records 

These rules don’t apply to any court document from the Provincial Court, the Supreme Court, or the Court of Appeal. Judicial documents are also excluded, including those related to a judge, master of the Supreme Court or justice of the peace. All related administration records are also excluded, such as the scheduling records of judges and trials.

The notes, communications or draft decisions of a decision maker in a quasi-judicial or administrative proceeding are also excluded.

Prosecution Documents

These rules don’t apply to prosecution documents until all proceedings related to the prosecution are complete.