Six months to prepare for ‘overkill’ CASL legislation

Michael Fekete

Dec 10, 2013

Jennifer Brown, Canadian Lawyer InHouse

[Extract]

Final regulations for CASL were released Dec. 4 with exceptions for charities, third-party referrals, and political parties, and a delay to when private right of actions can happen (which will facilitate lawsuits). That means compliance planning should go into high gear now even though many businesses will likely need more clarity on what they have to do and when, says Michael Fekete, a partner with Osler Hoskin & Harcourt LLP in Toronto.

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“Complete your gap analysis if you haven’t already and put compliance planning at the top of the agenda,” says Fekete. “What makes matters worse is we expected nine to 12 months lead time before coming into force and it’s going to be a mad dash for many companies.”

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While it is timely that the final regulations came down during budget season for most companies, Fekete says the resources required to get up to speed will be “significant.”

“The legislation is broader in material ways than legislation in other jurisdictions and the reason there has been a three-year delay from enactment to finalization is because industry has tried to get clarity and exemptions so it would have a more reasonable application. While the regulations provide some assistance most businesses and organizations will still be left with many questions,” he says.

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