36456   Dianna Louise Parsons, et al. v. Her Majesty the Queen in Right of Ontario and Attorney General of Canada

Courts – Jurisdiction– Class actions

In the context of a national class action, the settlement agreement assigns a supervisory role to superior court judges in Ontario, British Columbia and Quebec. It also provides that although each of the three courts is to exercise an independent supervisory power over the settlement within its own jurisdiction, any order by a court only takes effect once there are materially identical orders of the other two courts. In 2012, contested motions were brought by class action counsel in each of the three provinces pursuant to the settlement agreement. Class counsel in each province proposed that the most efficient and effective procedure for adjudicating the motions would be for the three supervisory judges to sit together in one location. The Attorneys General of the three provinces objected to the judges of their provinces sitting outside the territorial boundaries of their provinces. Class action counsel therefore brought applications for directions in their respective province for a determination on the jurisdictional issue. The Ontario Superior Court of Justice ordered that a judge of the Ontario Superior Court of Justice has the discretion to sit with his or her counterparts in a location in or outside Ontario to hear applications. The Court of Appeal for Ontario allowed the appeal saying that when a hearing is conducted from outside Ontario, it must be conducted with the necessity of a video-conference link to a courtroom in Ontario.

35843    Anita Endean, as representative plaintiff v. Her Majesty the Queen in Right of the Province of British Columbia and Attorney General of Canada

Courts – Jurisdiction –Class actions

In the context of a national class action, the settlement agreement assigns a supervisory role to superior court judges in Ontario, British Columbia and Quebec. It also provides that although each of the three courts is to exercise an independent supervisory power over the settlement within its own jurisdiction, any order by a court only takes effect once there are materially identical orders of the other two courts. In 2012, contested motions were brought by class action counsel in each of the three provinces pursuant to the settlement agreement. Class counsel in each province proposed that the most efficient and effective procedure for adjudicating the motions would be for the three supervisory judges to sit together in one location. The Attorneys General of the three provinces objected to the judges of their provinces sitting outside the territorial boundaries of their provinces. Class action counsel therefore brought applications for directions in their respective province for a determination on the jurisdictional issue. The Supreme Court of British Columbia ordered that a judge of the British Columbia Supreme Court has the discretion to sit with his or her counterparts in another province to hear applications. The Court of Appeal for British Columbia allowed the appeal stating that British Columbia judges cannot conduct hearings that take place outside the province.