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Tuesday, February 09, 2016
Saskatchewan Justice

The Class Actions Act sets out the rules for class actions in Saskatchewan. An application must be made by a member of a class, on behalf of the other members of the class, to the Chief Justice of the Court of Queen's Bench to name a judge to conduct a hearing for certification as a class action. The judge must determine whether:

  • the cause of action is appropriate subject matter for a class action;
  • there are two or more potential claimants;
  • the claims raise a common issue;
  • a class action is the preferable procedure; and
  • the representative plaintiff will adequately represent the interests of the class.

The Court establishes the boundaries of the class action by determining:

  • the class (i.e., by describing what constitutes a particular class);
  • the nature of the claims and common issues; and
  • how a member of the class can opt-out of the class.

The Court determines the method of notice and the contents of the notice that must be given to members of the class. Notification is necessary to allow class members to opt-out and, once the action is resolved, to advise class members what they need to do to receive compensation.

In appropriate instances, the Court may certify a multi-jurisdictional class action involving individuals who reside both within and outside of Saskatchewan. Where a multi-jurisdictional class action is certified, class members who reside outside of Saskatchewan do not have to take special steps to remain part of the class action but maintain the option to opt-out.

The Act includes provisions respecting remedies that may be ordered by the Court. Damage awards can be assessed on an individual basis or the Court can grant aggregate awards of monetary relief and apportion among class members entitlement to the pool of money.

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