Class Action Frequently Asked Questions

Neufeld Legal P.C. can be reached by telephone at 403-400-4092 or email Chris@NeufeldLegal.com

What is a class action?

A class action is a special form of lawsuit in which one or more plaintiffs brings a claim against one or more defendants based on allegations which are common to a group, or class, of people. In order for the action to become a class action, it must proceed through a stage known as “certification”.

Who brings a class action lawsuit forward?

A statement of claim is issued on behalf of a “representative plaintiff”. The representative plaintiff’s role is to work with class counsel to bring the action forward and to represent the class members in court.

What is certification?

In order for an action to proceed on behalf of the entire class, a judge must decide (among other things) whether the members of the proposed class have common issues, and whether a class action is the preferred way to resolve the issues. The process to decide these issues is known as the “certification application”. If the judge is satisfied that the case meets all of the requirements for certification, the judge will issue an order which certifies the action as a class action.

Do I have to do anything to “join” the lawsuit?

No. If the lawsuit is certified, and you are included in the class as defined, you are automatically included in the lawsuit.

Once I am part of the class do I have to do anything?

No. We will work primarily with the class representative, although we could potentially benefit from your input and involvement.

What if I do not want to be included in the lawsuit?

Those who do not wish to remain in the class will be given the option to opt-out by sending an opt-out form at the appropriate time to us. You will want to review the opt-out notice carefully, however, given that opting out of the class action could potentially limit your rights going forward, including your ability to recover money that might otherwise have been recoverable on your behalf.

What are the benefits of proceeding as a class action?

Certification as a class action will enable us to prove the facts in a single lawsuit rather than in numerous individual lawsuits. This has obvious benefits to the class members and to the courts.

How long does it take for a class action to be resolved?

There is no timeframe. We will move the case forward diligently but it can take a considerable period of time to reach trial.

Can a class action lawsuit be settled without going to trial?

Many class actions settle and thereby remove the need for a trial. However, we cannot predict with any certainty whether or not there will be a settlement in a given action.

What are the chances of winning the action?

The chances of “winning” can never be accurately predicted.

Will I be liable for any costs or legal fees?

Class action lawsuits are typically brought on a contingency fee basis. This means that the lawyers will only be paid if the action is successful at trial or results in a settlement in favour of the class. Legal fees would then be paid out of the settlement or judgment proceeds as approved by a judge. Disbursements (i.e. out-of-pocket expenses, including expert reports) are initially paid by the lawyers and based upon the rulings of the presiding judge, can be paid by the defendant and if the class action is successful, amounts advanced for disbursements are re-paid from the proceeds of any judgment or settlement to the class.

When can I expect to receive a payout from this class action?

A “payout” or an award for damages is never certain. The action may settle or it may proceed to trial, at which time a judge will determine the amount of damages, if any, to which the class members are entitled to. Regardless, the amount of “payout” cannot be predicted, and we cannot predict when the action may settle or when the trial will conclude.

How will counsel keep me updated on the progress of the case?

If the lawsuit is certified as a class action, you will receive a formal notice from the court explaining the nature of the case and providing you with the opportunity to opt out if you wish. General information about each of the lawsuits will be posted on Neufeld Legal’s class action lawsuit website at http://www.employeelawyer.ca.

Where can I send any documents that I have that may be relevant to a class action?

If you wish to send us documents related to the class action, please speak with us in advance. Otherwise, we ask that you keep a copy of any documents, correspondences, records, invoices, receipts, etc. that you feel might be relevant to your individual claim in the class action. If there is a “payout,” this documentation may be required in order to support your claim for compensation. It is not required that you send any documents to us at this time.

Contact Neufeld Legal P.C. by telephone at 403-400-4092 or email: Chris@NeufeldLegal.com.

IMPORTANT NOTE: This website is designed for general informational purposes. The site is not designed to answer specific questions about your individual situation or entitlement. Do not rely upon the information provided on this website as legal advice in respect of your individual situation nor use it as substitute for individual legal advice. If you want specific legal advice, you need to engage a lawyer under established legal engagement procedures that have been specifically agreed to by that lawyer.

The information collected about potential class members will assist counsel in prosecuting the class action and assessing what damages were suffered by the class as a whole, as well as potentially identifying other legal aspects / claims that were not previously considered. Providing the information requested does not make you the client of Neufeld Legal PC. The court will ultimately decide who will be included as a class member.