What Is CASL

CASL blog

CASL stands for Canadian Anti-Spam Legislation, this legislation comes into force July 1st 2014 and will affect all CEM’s (Commercial Electronic Messages). Emails, texts, IM, social media, and automated phone messages all fall under the CEM category.

Some examples of CEMs include:

  • offers to purchase, sell, barter or lease a product, good,  service, land or an interest / right in land;
  • offers to provide a business, investment or gaming opportunity;

  • promoting a person, including the public image of a person, as being a person who does anything referred to above, or who intends to do so.

Source CRTC

What does this mean for the future or Marketing? With the new legislation

There are now three requirements for sending a CEM. You need consent, identification information, and an unsubscribe function. There are two types of consent under CASL, there is express and implied.

Express consent:

Can be written or orally given. It is recommended that you obtain double verification, such as a user clicks a checkbox to sign up and then you send them a confirmation email with a link to verify they wanted to sign up.  If someone reports you to the CRTC you need to be able to prove that you were given consent so it’s a good idea to keep written records of how you obtained consent.

Implied consent:

Is when you already have an existing relationship with someone, for example they made a purchase, gave you a business card, or downloaded free software from your site. Implied consent expires after two years so it is recommended that you obtain express consent before that window expires.

Unsubscribe function:

The Unsubscribe function must be clearly displayed on all CEM’s and must be simple, quick, and easy for the user. The unsubscribe can be a broad unsubscribe function or it can have options to unsubscribe from certain communications or all communication.

The Penalties:

If you commit a violation under any of sections 6 to 9 of CASL, then you may be required to pay an administrative monetary penalty (AMP). The maximum amount of an AMP, per violation, for an individual is $1 million, and for a business, it is $10 million. CASL sets out a list of factors to be considered in order to determine the amount of the AMP.

Source: CRTC

Suggested Reading:

If you are a Marketer, ensure your digital communications are compliant by educating your team with the below resources or connect with Community for support.


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