Category: Class Actions

Air Canada 624 Crash: Is a Class Action the Right Approach?

by John McKiggan

Over the last 72 hours new coverage in Nova Scotia has been dominated by stories involving the crash (or “hard landing” as Air Canada prefers to describe it ) of Air Canada flight 624.

Most of the coverage has revolved around how the crash happened, why it happened, and concerns about the delayed response to passengers who had to wait on the tarmac for rescue.

Class action being filed?

Pfizer Zoloft Birth Injury Claims – When is a risk too small to explain?

by John McKiggan

Last month 10 couples filed birth injury lawsuits against Pfizer, who manufactures the antidepressant Zoloft. They claim severe birth injuries suffered by their children are a consequence of the mom’s taking Zoloft during their pregnancy.

Failed to Warn of Risks

The argument is Pfizer failed to warn of the risks to unborn children, and further that Pfizer did not adequately test the product.

Potential Class Action for Breach of Privacy of Capital Health Records?

by John McKiggan

Capital Health in Halifax admitted this week that one of their former employees breached the privacy of more than 100 Capital Health patients by viewing their medical records without proper authorization.

Capital Health notified affected patients this week and apologized for the breach of privacy.

“We apologize to all of those people whose private information was viewed and to the community at large,” said Catherine Gaulton, a Vice President of Capital Health.

Class Actions: Supreme Court Allows Nursing Home Claim to Proceed on Narrower Grounds

by John McKiggan

The Supreme Court of Canada released it’s decision today in Alberta v. Elder Advocates of Alberta Society

A class action was filed on behalf of residents in long-term care facilities in Alberta claiming that the government artificially inflated the accommodation charges to subsidize the cost of medical expenses. They initiated a class action alleging that the Province of Alberta and the the resident’s health care. Under provincial legislation, Alberta is responsible for the cost of medical care required by the residents of nursing homes and auxiliary hospitals.

The class members claimed damages for breach of fiduciary duty, negligence, bad faith and/or unjust enrichment. They also filed a claim under s. 15(1) of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

Military’s Former Gay Policy Could Cost Feds

by John McKiggan

Here’s a link to a story the CBC National news did about how the military’s former practice of hunting down and firing gay and lesbian members of the Armed Forces could expose Canada to a class action lawsuit.

I find it interesting (and more than a little disappointing) that there are very few comments condemning horrible way our military treated members of the Forces who simply wanted to serve their country.

What do you think?

Class Action involving “disgraced” pathologist to proceed: NB Ct. of Appeal

by John McKiggan

Dr. R. Menon tried to stop a class action filed against him by patients whose test results were mis-read by Menon.

The New Bruswick Court of Appeal ruled last week that the class action can proceed.

I have been following this fiasco for the last two years. For more information you can take a look a some of my past posts:

John McKiggan invited to present to National Symposium on Class Actions

by John McKiggan

Osgoode Hall Law School’s National Symposium on Class Actions is Canada’s “premier forum for class actions debate”. The Symposium “brings together leaders from both sides of the bar as well as experienced judges and academics to share and explain the strategies and tactics at play in this form of high-stakes litigation”.

The conference is taking place at Osgoode Hall Law school April 29 and 30.

I am pleased to say I have been invited to speak to the conference as part of a panel discussing the top 10 class actions decisions of the past year.

Class Actions Provide Access to Justice

by John McKiggan

I have been asked to speak at the Atlantic Province’s Trial Lawyers Association conference tomorrow about certification of class actions.

The goals of class action legislation have been stated again and again in various decisions from other provinces across the country. They are:

(a) Access to justice;
(b) Judicial economy ; and,
(c) Deterrence or behaviour modification.