Canadian Anti-Spam (CASL) Law

Canada has enacted new legislation that could affect your email marketing with VerticalResponse. While we cannot make guarantees about how CASL (Canadian Anti-Spam Legislation) might affect you, we want to provide as much information as we can regarding these changes.


On July 1, 2014, Canada's anti-spam legislation (CASL) will go into effect.  Here's what you need to know:

What is Canada's anti-spam legislation all about?

According to Canada's anti-spam legislation website, "The Act will begin to take effect on July 1, 2014 when most of the Act comes into force. Once the law is in force, it will help to protect Canadians while ensuring that businesses can continue to compete in the global marketplace."

What do I have to do to comply with the legislation?

CASL states your email must comply with these three elements:

  1. All email addresses you send to must be permission-based, meaning the subscribers specifically opted-in to receive your communications. If you are not currently doing this, you can use an email sign up form to collect permission-based subscribers on your website, blog or social media networks.
  2. All emails must contain an easy-to-find unsubscribe link that is valid for 90 days.
  3. Your subject line must pertain to the content in the email.

VerticalResponse is compliant with all three elements of CASL.

My business is not in Canada so I'm not affected, right?

Just because your business is located outside of Canada does not mean you are exempt from CASL. If you're sending email to anyone who resides in Canada, your sending practices must abide by these rules.

Where can I learn more?

Canada's Anti-Spam Legislation site has all of the details and this presentation from the folks at Return Path helps you prepare for CASL.


Note: The information in this post cannot be considered legal advice, and is not legally binding.

What are Opt-in forms?

Opt-in Forms are a great way to get new list members. We generate a snippet of HTML code that you can place on your web site. After a web visitor fills out the form, they’ll receive a confirmation email. Only after they click the confirmation link will they be added to the list you specified. This is called a double opt-in, and helps ensure the health of your list.


Here are some resources you might find helpful:

FAQ about CASL:

Guide for creating opt-in forms:

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