Anti-Spam Law - What's next?

June 17, 2013 - Canada’s Anti-Spam Legislation has been passed, but is not yet in force. This status – and the contents of the regulations – may however change in the coming months.

Canada’s Anti-spam Legislation (CASL) was granted Royal Assent in December 2010, but its key provisions have not yet been proclaimed into force. Industry Canada has said that those key provisions will not come into force until both the CRTC Regulations and the Industry Canada Regulations under CASL have been finalized.

The CRTC regulations were finalized in March of 2012, following a lengthy consultation process.

The Industry Canada regulations have not been finalized. Industry Canada went through an initial consultation period in 2011 with its first draft of proposed regulations. On January 5, 2013, it published revised draft CASL regulations and invited comments with the consultation period ending February 4, 2013. During this second round of consultations, Industry Canada received over 250 submissions. Organizations such as Imagine Canada and the Ontario Nonprofit Network highlighted the enormous burden that CASL compliance will place on organizations, and raised concerns that CASL will restrict charities’ and non-profits’ “ability to carry out activities that further their missions to serve Canadians and communities.”

Senior Industry Canada officials are working through the submissions and preparing the finalized regulations for publication in the Canada Gazette within a few months. Once published the Regulations will likely come into force after a one-year grace period.

Based on the high number of changes requested in the consultation period ended February 4, it is expected that the final regulations may include amendments to reduce the impact of the CASL on charities and non-profits. Regardless of the outcome, arts organizations may wish to look to the fall to review their electronic messaging practices in the light of the new regulations.

 

 

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