Tag Archives: private right of action

Canada Anti-Spam Law Private Right of Action Suspended

The highly anticipated date of July 1st was supposed to bring private right of action to Canada’s anti-spam legislation. We reported on the topic here.

However, the Government of Canada has chosen to suspend the provision after getting a wave of backlash from businesses. In a statement last week, the Government of Canada announced that even though,

Canadians deserve an effective law that protects them from spam and other electronic threats,” Canadian organizations should not have to bear this burden of unnecessary red tape and costs associated with compliance.

The Canadian Government indicated that it supports a “balanced approach that protects the interests of consumers while eliminating any unintended consequences for organizations” and will ask a parliamentary committee to review CASL.

This seems like a good move for both sides. Businesses, for the time being, won’t have to worry about multi-million dollar lawsuits on top of the onerous provisions of CASL. And the legislation will have a chance for review and improvement.

Although the private right of action is no longer impending, Canadian organizations are still at risk of incurring administrative penalties if they do not comply with CASL (maximum of $1,000,000 for individuals and $10,000,000 for businesses). A healthy compliance program will avoid exposure to penalties.

For any other questions related to the regulations under CASL, send those to our team at cyberteam@eplaceinc.com.

Canada Anti-Spam Law Gets Private Right of Action

Class action lawyers are chomping at the bit with regards to Canada’s anti-spam legislation.

A private right of action comes into force July 1 for the Canadian law. Not only will companies need to worry about government regulators, but now potential class action lawsuits.

CASL regulates all commercial electronic messages sent to Canadian citizens. The largest threat from this type of private right of action would be class action lawsuits. Corporate conduct being regulated does not involve one off communications with customers, but rather email blasts, mass software updates, etc.

Government regulators have had authority to enforce requirements of CASL. They settled a few cases in the past couple years for inadequate consent and issues with the unsubscribe feature including:

  • June 2015: Porter Airlines – $150,000
  • November 2015: Rogers Media – $200,000
  • August 2016: Kellogg Canada – $60,000

However, the government tends to allocate its resources towards more egregious or unique violations when enforcing the law. Private plaintiffs are more plentiful and profit-driven.

As we know, class action lawsuits can pay a few bucks for the class members, and pay big for lawyers. Expect to see some sharks in the water come summertime.