Supreme Court upholds Ontario Anti-SLAPP Legislation
The Centre for Free Expression, along with co-intervenors Canadian Association of Journalists and CWA-Canada, welcome today's Supreme Court's unanimous judgment in 1704604 Ontario Ltd. v. Pointes Protection Association which upholds Ontario's anti-SLAPP legislation and makes some important clarifications about how specific legislative provisions should be interpreted and applied.
The court indicated that "public interest", a requirement for a motion to succeed in dismissing a SLAPP suit, must be given a broad and liberal interpretation. The court also reformulated what plaintiffs must do to avoid having their cases dismissed, specifically requirements to establish that their actions have “substantial merit” and that defendants have “no valid defence”
The overall impact of the decision will be to strengthen the ability of defendants to succeed in having SLAPP suits dismissed.