You’ve probably seen the commercials. The ones where some far-flung American law firm is talking about how “you might be entitled to compensation if you’re experiencing horrible consequences from some company’s malpractice” in the middle of your afternoon TV show. The truth is, most Canadian class actions aren’t nearly as bizarre and horrifying. Nonetheless, they are an important (if often misunderstood) part of Canada’s legal system.
Perhaps because of these commercials (and occasionally the reputation of the law firms who create them), some people think of class actions as some sort of a “cash-grabbing” scheme, or a way for less-than-honest individuals to drag an innocent corporation through the mud. In truth, class actions are among the most effective methods for ordinary citizens to hold corporations accountable for their mistakes.
Read on to learn more about what a class action is, why they matter, and how James H. Brown and Associates is ready to assist Canadians with potential class-action lawsuits.
What is a Class-Action Lawsuit?
Class-action lawsuits allow groups of individuals (typically 40 people or more) to pursue justice and compensation from companies and other legal entities for harmful and negligent practices. Rather than each member of the group seeking individual legal representation, they are represented collectively by an individual or group of lawyers. While modern class-action is historically more prevalent in the United States, Canada now allows consumer organizations and other groups to make claims on behalf of a larger group of people.
Why Pursue a Class-Action?
Many critics of class-action lawsuits characterize them as “cash-grabs” or “smear campaigns.” While it’s true that class-actions have been used for less-than-ethical profiteering or to ruin an organization’s image, this is not their intended purpose. James H. Brown and Associates does not condone or participate in this type of legal action.
The primary objective of a class-action (or any legal action) is to attain justice. In instances where a company’s negligence has negatively impacted multiple people or groups of people, class action lawsuits are a way to receive restitution and other fair compensation for damages. Rather than wait for cases to be resolved in individual lawsuits (which can take an extremely long time), class actions allow all class members’ claims to be determined at once, quickly and efficiently.
In addition to efficiency, there is something to be said for “strength in numbers.” There’s no way around it: litigation is expensive and time-consuming. It can be difficult for a single individual to acquire the resources necessary to hold a large organization accountable in court. However, class-action lawsuits allow large groups of individuals to effectively pool resources and command the courts’ attention. In many cases, it is more likely that individuals will achieve justice when working together than on their own.
Finally, class-action lawsuits often lead to large-scale positive change, with benefits extending far beyond the affected group. For example, the Volkswagen Canada class-action lawsuit benefitted not only vehicle owners who had been deceived by improper emissions reporting; it set new precedents (and consequences for failure) for all auto manufacturers, allowing consumers to make informed purchasing decisions. Successful class-actions can set standards that hold large corporations accountable for their actions, protecting everyone from future negligence.
Class-Action Lawsuits at James H. Brown
James H. Brown and Associates has successfully participated in some of the largest class-action lawsuits in Western Canadian history. We have over 200 years’ combined experience in securing fair compensation for our clients, backed by a firm commitment to support our clients every step of the way. We have extensive experience managing high-profile class action cases in a variety of industries, including:
- Consumer Product Recalls
- Food Safety
- Utility Management
- Long-Term Care Facility Malpractice
- And More!
Ready to Stand Up for Your Rights?
If you’re a member of a class who has fallen victim to a company or other legal entity’s negligence, you may be able to attain justice through a class-action lawsuit.
Our experienced class action team investigates all inquiries thoroughly and is ready to get started immediately.
Contact us today to speak with an experienced lawyer about your potential class-action lawsuit.