Adjusting service fees for inflation

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Implementation of annual adjustment

The Government of Canada is committed to improving services for Canadians and Canadian businesses and increasing transparency related to federal fees. In 2017, the Government of Canada passed the Service Fees Act (SFA), which requires that all federal departments increase fees annually to reflect inflationary costs.

The SFA came into force in June 2017 and introduced a modern legislative framework that enables cost-effective delivery of services and, through enhanced reporting to Parliament, improved transparency and oversight.

The Act introduced a requirement to implement in 2019-2020 an annual adjustment of service fees based on the previous year's April All-items Consumer Price Index (CPI), as published by Statistics Canada. This requirement ensures that fees keep pace with inflation.

In order to be compliant with the SFA, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) will begin adjusting its fees based on the CPI starting March 31, 2020, and on every March 31 going forward.

The adjustments to the fees will be available on the CFIA's Fees Notice, and invoices will automatically reflect this change for services provided.

Inflation and regulatory fees

Not all fees are adjusted each year. Canada's Treasury Board Secretariat established a materiality threshold that determines which services are subject to Service Fees Act requirements for inflation.

We apply inflation to a fee when it is considered material under the Low-materiality Fees Regulations.

The following types of fees are material:

  • Formula-based fees (with at least one independent variable), and hourly or other time-based rates
    • These fees are always considered material, no matter their amount or annual revenue generated
  • All fees of more than $150, or fees between $51 to $150 that generate more than $500,000 of revenue per year
  • Other fees to be listed in Schedule 2 of the upcoming Low-materiality Fees Regulations

The following types of fees are low-material:

  • Flat fees of $50 per unit or less, regardless of revenue
  • Flat fees of $51 to $150 per unit with an annual revenue of $500,000 or less
  • Specific types of fees included in the regulations, such as parking and photocopying
  • Fees listed in Schedule 1 of the Low-materiality Fees Regulations

If a fee is low-material, we are not required to apply inflation (Consumer Price Index).

Exception: All CFIA fees in respect of Animal Health, Plant Health and Plant Production are listed in Schedule 2 of the Low-materiality Fees Regulations.

To obtain more information about this implementation contact us by email: