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Class actions have been authorized by Alberta legislation since 2004, although class actions were permitted in Alberta before the 2004 Class Proceedings Act. Class actions are complicated, specialized and expensive litigation and clients engaged in class actions are best served by lawyers who have extensive experience with their unique features.

McLennan Ross lawyers have decades of experience with class actions and their predecessor proceedings, which have given them the knowledge to guide you through the many unique and complex issues that arise. We can assist you with the strategic and economic, as well as the legal, decisions that must be taken through the course of a class proceeding to manage risk and cost while protecting your interests.

General counsel of some of the largest businesses in Canada choose McLennan Ross as Alberta counsel in large, complex and multijurisdictional class actions. Our extensive experience encompasses both the Plaintiff and Defendant side of class actions, and our lawyers have been engaged in every aspect of this specialized litigation—pre-certification disputes, certification as a class proceeding, case management, common issues trial, settlement and Court approval, and distribution of proceeds to class members.

It is important to note that we recognize the benefits of alternative dispute resolution approaches whenever possible. We have, for example, assisted clients in resolving complex class proceedings through multiparty mediation processes. We have experience in dealing with class actions in a wide range of areas, including:

  • Employment
  • Professional Liability
  • Director and Officer Liability
  • Securities
  • Product Liability
  • Oil and Gas
  • Insurance
  • Consumer Claims
Graham McLennan, Q.C., ICD.D  
Stuart Chambers  
Don Dear, Q.C.  


Stuart Chambers   780.482.9113
Don McGarvey, Q.C.   780.482.9241
Graham McLennan, Q.C., ICD.D   780.482.9221


Iain Bailey   403.303.1683
Robb Beeman   403.303.1690
Jennifer Biernaskie, ICD.D    403.303.0157
Don Dear, Q.C.   403.303.9107
Jeff Weidman   403.303.1681


Stuart Chambers   780.482.9113
Jeff Weidman   403.303.1681
Akhtar v. MacGillivray

McLennan Ross was counsel for a Defendant audit firm in connection with this class action brought against it and the Alberta Securities Commission (ASC) related to the failure of a mortgage loan company. McLennan Ross was successful in having the Court order that the matter could not proceed as a class action and then successfully defended the matter at trial, together with counsel for Alberta Justice defending the ASC.

Anderson v. Pan-Alberta Gas/NOVA

McLennan Ross represented Pan-Alberta Gas (PAG), a wholly owned subsidiary of NOVA, in connection with a large claim brought against PAG by several large natural gas producers. The allegation was a breach of fiduciary duty by PAG, a gas aggregator, and the damages claimed were in the tens of millions of dollars. The claim encompassed operations throughout North America by PAG, and involved extensive document production. We were required to consult with experts in Calgary, Washington and Houston. We successfully applied for an Order which required the Plaintiffs to proceed with the action as a class proceeding on behalf of all gas producers in Alberta who supplied gas to PAG. The action settled shortly thereafter.

Betthel et al v. Lord Conrad Black
McLennan Ross acted for one of the Defendants in this class action brought in Saskatchewan, Ontario and Quebec, alleging that Lord Black and Hollinger engaged in a number of transactions which were improper and operated to the prejudice of the minority shareholders of Hollinger. After a preliminary application in Saskatchewan regarding jurisdiction, the Plaintiffs discontinued as against our client.

Bruley v. Instaloans Financial Solution Centres
McLennan Ross acted for the Defendants in this class action commenced in Ontario against a payday loan company, which was resolved as part of the overall settlement of class proceedings against our clients in all jurisdictions, except for British Columbia (see Downey and Tschritter below).

Condominium Corporation No. 1122235 v. Surbey et al
McLennan Ross acted for a number of Defendants in a class action where the representative Plaintiff purported to bring an action on behalf of all owners of a 500 unit condominium complex in Fort McMurray. The Court found that the class proceeding as proposed was fundamentally flawed and failed to grant certification.

Delf v. Merit Energy
McLennan Ross represented the auditors of Merit Energy, a public oil and gas company that had become insolvent. Actions were commenced in Ontario, British Columbia and Alberta. The action was settled after examinations for discovery and a lengthy mediation process, over which George Adams, Q.C., presided. The Alberta settlement, approved by the Court, was affirmed by Court Orders in Ontario and British Columbia.

Downey v. Instaloans Financial Solutions Centres
McLennan Ross acted for the Defendants in this class action commenced in Ontario against a payday loan company, which was resolved as part of the overall settlement of the Ontario and Alberta class proceedings against our clients. The settlement agreements were approved by the Courts in Ontario and Alberta.

Fong et al v. Grenville-Germain Calgary Limited Partnership
McLennan Ross acted for the directors of a corporation which constructed a luxury condominium/hotel/office complex in an action commenced on behalf of the owners of the residential condominiums for misrepresentations and deficiencies.

Hudyma v. LoyaltyOne, Inc. et al
McLennan Ross acted for an international transportation carrier with respect to an action involving a large travel facilitator and the incorporation of fuel surcharges in the calculation of costs.

Kilroy v. A OK Payday Loans Inc. et al
This was a British Columbia class action against a number of payday loan operations, in which McLennan Ross represented three of the Defendants. The Plaintiff discontinued its action against our clients.

Korte v. Cormie
McLennan Ross was counsel to the auditors in this action, a “representative proceeding” prior to the implementation of class proceedings legislation in Alberta, which was brought on behalf of all of the investors in two subsidiaries of the Principal Group, a financial conglomerate that failed. The matter was settled prior to examinations for discovery.

Lahaie v. Goodyear
This was a class action against Goodyear. McLennan Ross assisted as Alberta counsel in commencing the class action in Alberta at the request of British Columbia counsel, who had already commenced an action in British Columbia. The matter was settled in British Columbia.

MacKinnon v. National Money Mart et al
This class action was brought in British Columbia against the major operators in the payday loan industry. McLennan Ross was counsel to one of the Defendants. We were successful in opposing an application for certification, following which the Plaintiff discontinued this action as against our clients.

Nette v. Stiles et al
In this proposed class action, the Plaintiff claimed against the Alberta Government and the College of Chiropractors that certain treatment was harmful and should not be permitted in the Province of Alberta. McLennan Ross represented a Defendant and brought an application to have the claim dismissed prior to certification. The Plaintiff discontinued against our client before the application was argued.

O'Keefe v. Menu Foods Operating Limited Partnership
McLennan Ross was involved in a class action brought by pet owners alleging that one of the major distributors of pet foods in Alberta did not have quality controls in place which resulted in the death of household pets from tainted food. This litigation was resolved by settlement amongst the parties.

Pauli et al v. Ace INA Insurance et al
McLennan Ross acted as Alberta counsel for one of the Defendants in this action which sought an interpretation of the Insurance Act and a return of any deductible charged where there was a total loss of vehicle in question. The action was resolved in favour of the Defendants after a summary determination of a point of law.

Ramias v. Johnson
McLennan Ross was counsel to the Plaintiffs in this putative class action which claimed investment fraud and securities violations. It was discontinued after settlement with the Defendants.

Tschritter v. Instaloans Financial Solutions Centres
McLennan Ross was counsel to the Defendants in this class action brought against a payday loan company in the Province of Alberta, which was resolved as part of the overall settlement of the Ontario and Alberta class proceedings against our clients (see Bruley and Downey above).

Western Canada Shopping Centres v. Dutton
McLennan Ross acted for one of the defendants in this longstanding class action for a number of years.

1023926 Alberta Ltd. v. Bank of America et al
Class actions have been filed against Visa, MasterCard, and a number of financial institutions in British Columbia, Alberta, Quebec and Ontario, claiming losses on behalf of Canadian merchants who accepted payment for goods or services by way of Visa or MasterCard credit cards related to service fees and restrictions on business practices that were required in order to accept such payments. McLennan Ross acts as Alberta agent for counsel for one of the Defendant financial institutions. The matters are subject to coordinated case management and are ongoing.

Alexander and Barrett v. HMS Financial et al
McLennan Ross is co-counsel for the Plaintiffs in relation to a national and cross-border class action alleging securities fraud. This action was certified as against numerous individual and corporate Defendants, including major financial institutions. We have recovered several million dollars for the class members.

Bird v. Blott & Associates et al
McLennan Ross is representing one of the Defendants in this proposed class action on behalf of a number of residential school claimants. We have just filed a Statement of Defence and the action has not yet been certified.

Covidien LLC
McLennan Ross is representing Covidien LLC in two class actions brought by individuals who had urinary mesh implanted. Covidien is one distributor (amongst many named manufacturers and distributors) of this product in Canada. The litigation mirrors similar class actions brought in the United States.

L'Hirondelle v Medicentres
An $11 million class action lawsuit has been filed over a missing laptop containing personal and health information of 620,000 Albertans. The lawsuit alleges Medicentres failed to protect private information and was negligent in taking more than four months to inform the public about the privacy breach. McLennan Ross is counsel to the IT consulting firm, who employed the IT consultant who owned the missing laptop.

Phillips and Wournell v. Image (Topco) Enterprises Limited et al
This proposed class proceeding in British Columbia, related to the Tracy action below, is brought against individuals and entities alleging fraudulent conveyance of assets in connection with the ongoing Tracy payday loans class proceeding. Defence of this action is ongoing.

Poseidon Concepts Corp.
McLennan Ross is lead counsel to the auditors of Poseidon Concepts Corp. (Poseidon) in a shareholder class action claim in Alberta for $650 million, as well as related actions filed in Alberta, Ontario, Quebec, and New York. The parties involved in the various disputes, in addition to the Plaintiff shareholders, include: Poseidon through its Monitor, Underwriters, a Lending Syndicate of chartered banks, a predecessor public corporation, and the directors and officers of Poseidon.

Tracy v. Instaloans Financial Solution Centres
McLennan Ross is counsel to the Defendants in class action proceedings in the Province of British Columbia. The class action alleges that the Defendant payday loan companies were operated unlawfully and claims damages in the tens of millions of dollars. Defence of the proceeding continues subsequent to its certification as a class action.

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