Ontario Civil

Civil Procedure

Further pursuit of lawsuit not in best interests of class or cost effective

Motion by parties for approval of proposed settlement agreement in class action proceeding for damages arising out of loss of USB key holding unencrypted personal and confidential information of 83,524 persons who had received immunization shot at clinic. Motion granted. Over course of action, anxiety about abuse of private information had given way to realization of probability that no one had missing USB key. Chances of success quite low. Information on key would not be particularly useful in identify theft. Risks to class high if settlement agreement not approved as defendant intended to bring motion for summary judgment. Benefits of settlement were that defendant waived any common law defences on liability if claim pursued before expiry of claim period, process was cost-free and relatively quick. Proposed settlement fair and reasonable and was best that class could accomplish given developments in case. Ongoing risks to members of class appeared to be negligible. Further pursuit of lawsuit not in best interests of class or cost effective.

Rowlands v. Durham Region Health (July 4, 2012, Ont. S.C.J., Lauwers J., File No. 66247/10) 217 A.C.W.S. (3d) 779 (9 pp.).

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