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If Your Phone Is Lost or Stolen - Understand your legal rights

Understand your legal rights

Your responsibility for charges

If your phone is lost or stolen and someone else runs up a big bill on your phone, you'll usually have to pay for any use of the phone up until the time you notify your service provider that the phone is missing.

Once you notify your provider that your device was lost or stolen, the provider must immediately suspend your service, at no charge. You can not be charged for any subsequent use another person makes of your phone that adds extra charges to your bill. (You can still be charged for your regular service.) 

If your provider charges you the full amount for any calls or texts before you reported it lost or stolen, you can ask if they can reduce the bill. Sometimes they'll do this as a gesture of goodwill but they don’t have to.

If your provider tries to charge you for calls or texts made after you reported the phone missing, you should dispute the bill.

Your contract continues to apply

Your contract continues to apply even after you have reported your phone as lost or stolen. You'll have to carry on paying your regular monthly payments, even while you are without a phone.

You'll have to decide whether to:

  • buy a new phone and continue with your current contract,
  • cancel your contract, or
  • wait until your current contract ends and get a new contract that includes a discounted phone.

To protect yourself in the future

To reduce the risk of theft in the future and make the information on your phone more secure:

  • Use the lock code or password feature on your phone at all times.
  • If you have a smartphone, use apps for remotely tracking your phone and erasing its data.
  • Keep information about your phone in a safe place. Note the phone make and model, colour and appearance, and the identification number (IMEI number).