Failure to obtain representation order within two year limitation period was fatal to action

Ontario civil | Civil Practice and Procedure

Class and representative proceedings

Representative or class proceedings not under class proceedings legislation

Failure to obtain representation order within two year limitation period was fatal to action

Limitation period. Family-owned meat processing business went bankrupt and 800 employees were terminated without notice or severance. Two actions were commenced against bankrupt businesses, other allegedly family-owned companies and two individuals alleged to be common employers. Actions were intended to be representative actions, one on behalf on unionized employees and one on behalf of non-unionized employees, and sought damages for wrongful dismissal as well as punitive damages on basis of common employer, conspiracy and oppression. Solvent defendants brought motion to dismiss representative actions on basis they were time-barred because required representation order was not obtained within two-year limitation period. Motion granted in part; action on behalf of unionized employees dismissed. Failure to obtain representation order within two-year limitation period was fatal to action on behalf of unionized employees, because it was brought under R. 12.08 of Rules of Civil Procedure, which required representation order be made before proceeding was commenced. Action on behalf of non-unionized employees was brought under R. 10.01, which contemplated prior proceeding and later representation order. Nothing in R. 10.01 plainly and obviously required representation order be obtained within two-year period. Action on behalf of non-unionized employees could proceed, on proviso plaintiffs apply for representation order forthwith, upon which defendants could pursue arguments about balance of convenience and prejudice.
Caetano v. Quality Meat Packers Holdings Ltd. (2017), 2017 CarswellOnt 4093, 2017 ONSC 1199, Edward P. Belobaba J. (Ont. S.C.J.).

Free newsletter

Our daily newsletter is FREE and keeps you up to date on all the developments in the Ontario legal community. Please complete the form below and click on subscribe for daily newsletters from Law Times.

Recent articles & video

Canadian lawyer helps with World Bank project on women and the law

Access to justice week agenda: Indigenous law, legal aid funds, big data and self-reps

Historical building to become international student hub, bolstered by Toronto lawyer

McMillan marks 90th anniversary of ‘Persons’ case

After 22 years under Les Viner, Torys names new leader

Ryerson Law School wraps first round of applications on Nov. 1

Most Read Articles

New real estate law podcast begins by tackling cannabis regulations

Legal aid investments save governments money all over the world, Canadian researchers find

After 22 years under Les Viner, Torys names new leader

Does solicitor-client privilege protect information shared with a legal app?