In Martel v. Kia Canada inc., 2017 QCCS 976, the Quebec Superior Court (Justice Chantal Tremblay) ruled on a motion by the defendant to examine class members. The motion was filed by Kia shortly after class counsel stated that they would call six previously unannounced witnesses at trial, all class members. The Court agreed that Kia should be able to examine all six class members on discovery before the case could be set down for trial and clarified the applicable test for pre-trial examinations of class members.
A class action was authorized (certified) against Kia on June 12, 2015 by the Quebec Court of Appeal (reversing the Superior Court).… Continue Reading
The British Columbia Supreme Court recently refused to allow the Chief and Council of the Hwlitsum First Nation (“HFN”) to advance a representative action to claim Aboriginal title and rights on behalf of a historic rights-bearing community. In Hwlitsum First Nation v Canada (Attorney General), 2017 BCSC 475, Justice Abrioux held that the representative action could not proceed because the class or collective for whom the representative plaintiffs purported to act was not capable of clear and objective definition.
As we previously noted in the Canadian Class Actions Monitor’s commentary on Araya v Nevsun Resources Ltd, 2016 BCSC 1856, British Columbia does not have a common law class action.… Continue Reading
It is tempting for lawyers to look at their cases as moving in a straight line, with each phase building towards the next. However, as class proceedings progress, new facts or circumstances may arise that undermine the issues for which the proceeding was certified for in the first place. In such circumstances, Defendant’s counsel should take a step back to analyze whether a motion for decertification is potentially appropriate.
Plaunt: An example of a recent decertification motion
This is exactly what happened in Plaunt v. Renfew Power Generation Inc. In Plaunt, a class of approximately 450 individuals in Ontario who owned property surrounding Round Lake had their action certified against Renfrew Power Generation (“RPG”).… Continue Reading