MLB-Slaw Selected Case Summaries

Here you'll find weekly summaries of selected cases provided to Slaw by Maritime Law Book's National Reporter System.

May 9

McCann et al. v. Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. et al. 2012 ONCA 243

Master and Servant - Remuneration - Pension or retirement benefits - Termination or revocation of plan

Between 1995 and 2000, Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. (CMHC) terminated approximately half of its workforce. During the downsizing period, there were significant surplus assets in the CMHC pension fund. CMHC made two “benefit enhancement decisions” on January 1, 1999, and January 1, 2001, respectively, that distributed surplus funds between CMHC and remaining pension plan members. A class action was certified on behalf of claimaints regarding the surplus funds, the “Lacroix plaintiffs” and the “McCann plaintiffs”. The Lacroix plaintiffs were downsized prior to January 1, 1999, and did not receive any benefit from the benefit enhancement decisions. The McCann plaintiffs were downsized between January 1, 1999, and January 1, 2001, and had received their share of the first benefit enhancement decision, but not the second. In 2007, Charbonneau, J., granted an order severing the McCann plaintiffs from the Lacroix action with permission for the McCann plaintiffs to raise proposed common issues in their action and for the Lacroix plaintiffs to add new common issues. The Lacroix plaintiffs requested amendments to their statement of claim and the McCann plaintiffs sought to certify certain claims.

The Ontario Superior Court, in a decision reported at [2009] O.T.C. Uned. 262, denied the motions. The plaintiffs appealed.

The Ontario Divisional Court, in a decision reported at (2010), 263 O.A.C. 273, dismissed the appeals. The plaintiffs appealed.

The Ontario Court of Appeal dismissed the appeals.

Editor’s Note: There are a number of reported decisions relating to these actions.

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Link to full judgment