Canadian Appeals Monitor Information and Commentary on Upcoming and Recent Appeal Court Decisions

Tag Archives: class action

Accounting for Preference: BCCA Reaffirms the Wide Discretion of Class Action Certification Judges

Posted in Case Comments, Class Actions

The BC Court of Appeal recently reaffirmed the principles of preferability in class action certification proceedings in the case of Vaugeois v Budget Rent-A-Car, wherein the certification judge had determined that a class proceeding was not the preferable forum to decide the disputes between vehicle renters who had allegedly been improperly  charged for vehicle repairs.

While the Court of Appeal indicated that the standard of review with respect to the preferability question was determinative of the appeal, Willcock JA’s reasons illuminated several key points.

First, the Court of Appeal restated that the standard of review is very high when … Continue Reading

Complete Relief Provides Defendants With No Relief From Class Actions

Posted in Case Comments, Class Actions

Defendants cannot defeat a class action by relying on an unaccepted settlement offer made to the proposed representative plaintiff for the full amount of his or her individual claim.  That is the conclusion reached by the Supreme Court of the United States in Campbell-Ewald Co. v. Gomez, No. 14–857.  The majority found that an unaccepted settlement offer creates no lasting right or obligation and, therefore, does not automatically render moot the claims of the representative plaintiff or by extension, those of the putative class members.  That said, the decision does reveal a potential path forward for class action … Continue Reading

The SCC Monitor (30/07/2015)

A Commentary on Recent Legal Developments by the Canadian Appeals Monitor

Posted in The SCC Monitor

Following our last post, the Supreme Court has released its decision in Strickland v. Canada (Attorney General), 2015 SCC 37. The Court’s decision in Strickland, referenced in more detail in this blog post, speaks to the circumstances in which a federal court can decline to exercise its jurisdiction to grant judicial review remedies. The appellants in Strickland sought a declaration that the Federal Child Support Guidelines were invalid and ultra vires the Divorce Act, R.S.C. 1985, c. 3. The Federal Court declined to exercise its jurisdiction holding that the matter should be brought before a … Continue Reading

More Than One Way To Skin A Privacy Breach: The Ontario Court of Appeal ‘s Decision in Hopkins v. Kay

Posted in Case Comments, Privacy

Background

Earlier this year, the Ontario Court of Appeal released its decision in Hopkins v. Kay, 2015 ONCA 112, in which it held that the mere existence of a legislative scheme to address privacy-related breaches of personal health information does not preclude a private action from being brought to address said breaches.… Continue Reading

The SCC Monitor (19/05/2015)

A Commentary on Recent Legal Developments by the Canadian Appeals Monitor

Posted in The SCC Monitor

The Supreme Court of Canada has released a number of significant decisions since our last update that are of interest to Canadian businesses and professions, addressing the level of evidence required of a material change to support a securities class action in Quebec, damages for wrongful conviction, and requirements for expert evidence.… Continue Reading

Screening Secondary Market Liability Actions: the Supreme Court Raises the Bar for Plaintiffs

Posted in Case Comments, Class Actions, Securities

On April 17, 2015, the Supreme Court of Canada (SCC) rendered its opinion in Theratechnologies inc. v. 121851 Canada inc., 2015 SCC 18 (Theratechnologies), its first decision on the Quebec statutory secondary market liability regime adopted in 2007 pursuant to a reform of the Quebec Securities Act (QSA).  Like its sister statutes in other provinces, although the QSA regime facilitates a plaintiff’s burden, mostly by presuming that variation in market price is linked to a misinformation or omission, it also imposes an authorization process under which a claimant must establish that its action is brought in good … Continue Reading

Class, Do Your Homework: Causation and Damages Methodologies at Certification

Posted in Case Comments, Class Actions, Corporate Law, Procedure, Torts

Overview

In Andriuk v. Merrill Lynch Canada Inc., the Alberta Court of Appeal affirmed a certification judge’s decision that an action, commenced pursuant to Alberta’s Class Proceedings Act, did not meet the requirements for certification of a class proceeding, based on a failure to demonstrate a viable methodology for establishing causation and damages on a class-wide basis.… Continue Reading

Regulatory Settlement Will Not Prevent Class Action: SCC Certifies Fischer

Posted in Class Actions, Regulatory

The following article may be of interest to readers of this blog: Regulatory Settlement Will Not Prevent Class Action: SCC Certifies Fischer

On December 12, 2013, the Supreme Court of Canada released its much anticipated decision in AIC Limited v. Fischer, 2013 SCC 69. The Court unanimously held that a restitution payment in settlement of regulatory proceedings does not preclude certification of a class action on behalf of the same investors who received compensation through the regulatory process. Read more.… Continue Reading

The Second Opinion: Class Actions, Constitutional Questions and Determining the “Preferable Proceeding”

A Commentary on Recent Legal Developments by the Opinions Group of McCarthy Tétrault LLP

Posted in Features, The Second Opinion

In Precision Contractors Ltd v Government of Saskatchewan, 2013 SKCA 57, the Court of Appeal found that a common issue of constitutional validity did not, in and of itself, make a class action not the “preferable proceeding”.

The Court of Appeal held that there was no absolute rule that a class action was perforce ill-suited to a claim for a declaration that a provincial taxing enactment was unconstitutional. In addition, the Court of Appeal noted the certification judge’s next step, bifurcating the proceedings by conditionally adjourning the certification application pending the determination of the constitutional issue in a … Continue Reading

Hot Off the Press – World Class Actions: A Guide to Group and Representative Actions Around the Globe

Posted in Aboriginal, Class Actions, Communications, Construction and Real Estate, Energy, Financial Services, Franchise and Distribution, Health, Insurance, Media, Municipal, Procedure, Professions, Securities, Transportation

In the newly published World Class Actions: A Guide to Group and Representative Actions Around the Globe, McCarthy Tétrault litigators David Hamer and Shane D’Souza co-authored the “Multijurisdictional and Transnational Class Litigation: Lawsuits Heard ‘Round the World” chapter. The chapter offers guidance to international lawyers who represent clients involved in cross-border, multinational and international class actions.

World Class Actions is a practical guide for lawyers, clients, legal support professionals, academics, policymakers and judges on the procedures available for class, group and representative actions internationally. Each chapter is written by a local attorney familiar with the laws, best practices, legal … Continue Reading

Hot Off the Press – Annual Review of Developments in Business and Corporate Litigation

Posted in Class Actions

For those who may be interested, three of McCarthy Tétrault’s litigators authored a chapter on class actions in the ABA’s recently published 2012 Annual Review of Developments in Business and Corporate Litigation. “Cross-Border and Multi-Jurisdiction Class Actions – A Canadian Perspective”, authored by Anthony Alexander, Christopher Hubbard and Elder Marques, discusses how Canadian courts have applied jurisdictional principles in class actions, both in assessing whether certification is appropriate and in enforcing foreign class action orders.

This is the first edition of the annual review that includes content on Canadian legal developments. You can read more on our Continue Reading

FCA Narrows the Limitation Period Defence in Civil Competition Act Claims

Posted in Case Comments, Class Actions, Competition, Procedure

Introduction

The Federal Court of Appeal has ruled that the “ongoing effects” of a conspiracy do not extend the applicable limitation period for the purposes of a civil action brought under section 36(1) of the Competition Act for a criminal conspiracy contrary to section 45(1). The Court of Appeal’s affirmation of the lower Court’s decision also suggests that the “ongoing damage” caused by the conspiracy does not extend the limitations period either. Instead, the limitations period starts at the latest when the plaintiff first becomes aware of the acts constituting the breach of the Act, and possibly even earlier, as … Continue Reading

OCA to Address Secondary Market Claims Against Foreign-Listed Issuers

Posted in Case Comments, Class Actions, Securities

The Ontario Court of Appeal recently announced that it will hear arguments in Abdula v. Canadian Solar.  The appeal raises the thorny question of when issuers listed solely on foreign exchanges may be sued for secondary market misrepresentations under the Ontario Securities Act.  This marks the first time that the issue will be considered by a Canadian appellate court.

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Ontario Divisional Court to Consider Students’ Ability to Sue Schools on a Several Basis

Posted in Case Previews, Class Actions, Procedure

The Ontario Divisional Court recently granted leave to appeal in Johnston v. Sheila Morrison Schools, a certified class action involving allegations of negligence and breach of fiduciary duty against a school and its headmaster. The primary issue on appeal is whether students may make claims against schools on a several basis and thereby avoid exposing their parents to counterclaims or third-party claims.

The certification order provided for three classes of plaintiffs: (i) residential students, (ii) day students, and (iii) family members of residential students. A statement of defence was filed prior to certification. Following certification, the defendants sought to … Continue Reading

Personal Liability of Class Counsel for the Costs of a Class Proceeding

Posted in Case Previews, Class Actions, Procedure, Professions

On September 26, 2011, the Ontario Court of Appeal will hear an appeal from a decision of Cullity J., who rightly characterized the issue on the motion before him as one “of considerable importance for the proper conduct of class proceedings.” The decision will be important to class counsel since it addresses the duty to explain and clearly document the risks of adverse costs consequences to their representative plaintiff clients. If upheld, the decision may also provide a potential avenue for defendants in successful class actions to seek costs where class counsel have not discharged their burden.

In Attis v.

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