The Point Saint Charles community clinic has filed a class action lawsuit against the Quebec government over illegal medical fees.

Despite the law, they say hundreds of medical practitioners are charging patients for tasks such as opening files, lab fees and even for picking up radiology reports.

The clinic has long denounced the practice and point out that the Quebec Health Insurance Board strictly forbids these kinds of fees.

However, some clinics use loopholes to get around the law.

The clinic is asking the government to stop ignoring the practice and are also asking the province to reimburse the hundreds of thousands of Quebecers who have paid for these fees over the past three years.

Stephan Defoy of the Point Saint Charles Community Clinic said the fees can make the difference between a patient seeking health care or going without.

“At Point Saint Charles they have a lot of people who don't have a big revenue and for a lot of them they cannot pay these fees,” he said. “And if they cannot pay these fees they don't have access to medical services and that’s terrible for them.”

It can take years for a class-action suit to make its way through the court system so the clinic urges anyone who has paid these fees to keep their receipts.

They may come in handy for claiming a reimbursement if the case is successful in court.