CASL: What Is It and How Do I Comply?

CASL is a law that applies to anyone emailing to Canadian addresses. It is in full effect July 1, 2017

What is CASL?

CASL is the anti-spam legislation enacted in Canada starting in July 2014 and coming into full effect in July 2017. 

What's New in July 2017?

The law is fully phased in at this point. Now, citizens have the right of private action with full penalties up to $10,000,000.

Does This Mean I Will Need to Stop Sending Email?

It is possible to fully comply with CASL regulations using Agency Revolution. While we make it quite difficult to break the rules, there are a few areas where you need to be careful.

CASL Requires Explicit Consent for Emailing Anyone Except:

  1. You can email customers

  2. You can email prospects with who you have a relationship with

  3. You can email anyone who conspicuously shares their contact information (for example, listing a contact email on their website)

What Are the Keys to Not Break the CASL Law in Canada?

The safest thing you can do is email customers only. This can be done by using the criteria Account > Status = Active as a rule in your segmentation.

Webform Prospects
If someone completes a webform make sure that your form states they will receive communication via email.

The exceptions are responses to complaints, inquiries, requests. These do not require additional consent.

Offline Prospects
For prospects who call and you collect their email, document their information carefully to track permission. You will need a mailing address in addition to an email (or cell phone number if you are texting.)

Old Prospects
Do not blanket communicate to prospects who have not become customers after six months.

Opt-Out links
CASL requires opt-out links on every email. Agency Revolution provides this automatically.

For example, can I:

Mailchimp has a great scenario based FAQ on what you can and cannot do regarding CASL in Canada.

Additional CASL details for PowerBroker Users

PowerBroker users have additional data inside PowerBroker to track consent. Consult with PowerBroker for further details. As a customer of Agency Revolution Fuse, this PowerBroker specific CASL information is available to you.

If you send a commercial email via other systems than Fuse, it is your responsibility to sync the opt-outs from Fuse to those systems.

Further reading

Enforcement Advisory - Notice for businesses and individuals on how to keep records of consent

For the sake of full disclosure, this article is provided to educate about the law designed to help our customers better understand the legal issues surrounding CASL. But legal information is not the same as legal advice -- the application of law to an individual’s specific circumstances. Although we have conducted research to better ensure that our information is accurate and useful, we insist that you consult a lawyer if you want professional assurance that our information, and your interpretation of it, is accurate. To clarify further, you may not rely upon this information as legal advice, nor as a recommendation or endorsement of any particular legal understanding, and you should instead regard this article as intended for entertainment purposes only.