Canadian Anti-SLAPP Laws in Action

33 Pages Posted: 23 Jun 2022

See all articles by Hilary Young

Hilary Young

University of New Brunswick - Fredericton - Faculty of Law

Date Written: June 14, 2022


Strategic lawsuits against public participation (SLAPPs) are a pernicious problem affecting freedom of expression and public participation. To help combat this problem, Ontario enacted anti-SLAPP legislation in 2015. British Columbia followed suit in 2019. This article presents results of a qualitative study of lawyers’ experience with anti-SLAPP litigation in Ontario and British Columbia. I interviewed 15 litigators familiar with these motions. Most had a positive view of the new legislation. However, they also revealed several reasons for concern, including the motions being slow and expensive, and providing new tools for strategic litigation. This study provides food for thought for parties, litigators, courts and any province considering enacting similar law.

Keywords: SLAPP, defamation, qualitative research, anti-SLAPP

Suggested Citation

Young, Hilary, Canadian Anti-SLAPP Laws in Action (June 14, 2022). Available at SSRN: or

Hilary Young (Contact Author)

University of New Brunswick - Fredericton - Faculty of Law ( email )

P.O. Box 4400
Fredericton, New Brunswick E3B 5A3

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