Hafichuk-Walkin et al. v. BCE Inc. et al., 2016 MBCA 32

JudgeBeard, Monnin and Mainella, JJ.A.
CourtCourt of Appeal (Manitoba)
Case DateMarch 09, 2015
JurisdictionManitoba
Citations2016 MBCA 32;(2016), 326 Man.R.(2d) 173 (CA)

Hafichuk-Walkin v. BCE Inc. (2016), 326 Man.R.(2d) 173 (CA);

      664 W.A.C. 173

MLB headnote and full text

Temp. Cite: [2016] Man.R.(2d) TBEd. MR.012

Terese Hafichuk-Walkin, Mark Burk, Vivian Malay, Reuben Schucher, Steve Drover, Shelley Frank, John Gillis, Apartment Laundry Services Ltd., Mark Frey, Trudy Betthel, Bryan Pawlachuk, Nathalie Pawalchuk, D & S Homes Ltd., Jennifer Evenson, Danielle Favreau, Jeff Ledding, Jessica Cordingley, Alison Weinberger, Terry Parker, Carol Walker, Cindy Belton, Leigh Edmunds, Lauren Tomashich, Stan Pappas, Amanda Donald, Richard Skuce, Lant Lutterodt, John Doe I, John Doe II, John Doe III, John Doe IV, Jane Doe I, Jane Doe II, Jane Doe III, Jane Doe IV, John Doe Ltd. I, John Doe Ltd. II, John Doe Ltd. III, John Doe Ltd. IV, John Doe V, John Doe VI, John Doe VII, Jane Doe V, Jane Doe VI, Jane Doe VII, John Doe Ltd. V, John Doe Ltd. VI, John Doe VII, John Doe VIII, John Doe IX, Jane Doe VIII, Jane Doe IX, John Doe Ltd. VIII, John Doe Ltd. IX, John Doe X, John Doe XI, John Doe XII, John Doe XIII, Jane Doe X, Jane Doe XI, Jane Doe XII, Jane Doe XIII, John Doe Ltd. X, John Doe Ltd. XI, John Doe Ltd. XII, John Doe Ltd. XIII, John Doe XIV, Jane Doe XIV, John Doe Ltd. XIV, John Doe XV, John Doe XVI, Jane Doe XV, John Doe Ltd. XV, John Doe XVII, John Doe XVIII, Jane Doe XVI, John Doe Ltd. XVI, John Doe XIX, John Doe XX, Jane Doe XVII, John Doe Ltd. XVII, John Doe XXI, John Doe XXII, Jane Doe XVIII, John Doe Ltd. XVIII, John Doe XXIII, John Doe XXIV, Jane Doe XIX, John Doe Ltd. XIX, John Doe XXV, Jane Doe XX, John Doe Ltd. XX, John Doe XXVI, Jane Doe XXI, John Doe Ltd. XXI, John Doe XXVII, Jane Doe XXII, John Doe Ltd. XXII and Other John Does & Jane Does To Be Added (plaintiffs/appellants) v. BCE Inc., Bell Canada, Bell Mobility Cellular Inc., Bell Mobility Inc., Aliant Telecom Inc., Bell Atlantic, Maritime Tel & Tel Ltd., NBTEL Inc., Island Telecom Inc., Newtel Communications Inc., MTS Communications Inc., Telus Corporation, Telus Mobility, B.C. Tel, Telus Communications (B.C.) Inc., Clearnet Communications Inc., Alberta Government Telephones (AGT), Saskatchewan Telecommunications (SASKTEL), Saskatchewan Telecommunications Holding Corporation, AT&T Canada Inc., Microcell Telecommunications Inc., Rogers Communications Inc., Rogers Cantel Inc., Rogers Wireless Inc. and Rogers AT&T Wireless (defendants/respondents)

(AI 14-30-08244; 2016 MBCA 32)

Indexed As: Hafichuk-Walkin et al. v. BCE Inc. et al.

Manitoba Court of Appeal

Beard, Monnin and Mainella, JJ.A.

March 14, 2016.

Summary:

In 2004, the plaintiffs claimed certification of an action in Manitoba in connection with "system access fees" alleged to have been charged improperly to cell phone users. Counsel for the plaintiffs filed similar actions in eight other provinces. In 2014, the defendants moved to dismiss the action as an abuse of process.

The Manitoba Court of Queen's Bench, in a decision reported at (2014), 308 Man.R.(2d) 215, granted the motion. The action was stayed unconditionally. The plaintiffs appealed.

The Manitoba Court of Appeal dismissed the appeal.

Courts - Topic 2015

Jurisdiction - General principles - Controlling abuse of its process (incl. abuse of process by relitigation) - In 2004, the plaintiffs claimed certification of an action in Manitoba in connection with "system access fees" alleged to have been charged improperly to cell phone users - Counsel for the plaintiffs filed similar actions in eight other provinces - In 2014, the defendants moved to dismiss the action as an abuse of process - A motions judge granted the motion - One of the principal reasons for invoking the doctrine of abuse of process was to prevent conflicting results in litigation - The doctrine could be applied at the pleadings stage - In assessing whether the filing of multiple class actions constituted an abuse, the court had to consider the entire context in which the actions had been brought - Here, the commencement of nine actions by the same plaintiffs against the same defendants on the same matter was an abuse - There was no intention to pursue this action - Its continued existence served no proper purpose - The action was stayed unconditionally - The plaintiffs appealed - The Manitoba Court of Appeal dismissed the appeal - See paragraphs 38 to 62.

Practice - Topic 210.2

Persons who can sue and be sued - Individuals and corporations - Status or standing - Class actions - Procedure - Multiple or competing actions (incl. appointment of lead counsel) - The Manitoba Court of Appeal stated that "The integrity of the administration of justice requires finality in litigation. The evils that multiplicity of proceedings give rise to are duplicative litigation, potential inconsistent results, undue costs and inconsistent proceedings ... Accordingly, it is a fundamental principle underlying the civil justice system that a multiplicity of proceedings is to be avoided, if at all possible ... This proposition applies equally to class actions. In our federation, parallel multi-jurisdictional class actions are permissible. However, multi-jurisdictional class actions are abusive when they are duplicative and no legitimate purpose would be served by allowing more than one class action to proceed on behalf of overlapping class members from one or more provinces ..." - See paragraphs 39 and 40.

Practice - Topic 210.2

Persons who can sue and be sued - Individuals and corporations - Status or standing - Class actions - Procedure - Multiple or competing actions (incl. appointment of lead counsel) - [See Courts - Topic 2015 ].

Practice - Topic 5277.1

Trials - Stay of proceedings - Abuse of process - [See Courts - Topic 2015 ].

Practice - Topic 5361

Dismissal of action - Grounds - General and want of prosecution - Abuse of process - [See Courts - Topic 2015 ].

Cases Noticed:

Frey et al. v. BCE Inc. et al. (2006), 282 Sask.R. 1; 2006 SKQB 328, refd to. [para. 3].

Frey et al. v. BCE Inc. et al. (2007), 312 Sask.R. 4; 2007 SKQB 328, refd to. [para. 3].

Frey et al. v. BCE Inc. et al. (2008), 329 Sask.R. 42; 2008 SKQB 79, affd. (2011), 377 Sask.R. 156; 528 W.A.C. 156; 2011 SKCA 136, leave to appeal refused (2012), 436 N.R. 397; 405 Sask.R. 320; 563 W.A.C. 1 (S.C.C.), refd to. [para. 3].

Frey et al. v. BCE Inc. et al. (2009), 334 Sask.R. 55; 2009 SKQB 165, affd. (2013), 409 Sask.R. 266; 568 W.A.C. 266; 2013 SKCA 26, refd to. [para. 3].

Collins et al. v. BCE Inc. et al. (2010), 352 Sask.R. 205; 2010 SKQB 74, refd to. [para. 3].

Gillis et al. v. BCE Inc. et al. (2015), 358 N.S.R.(2d) 39; 1131 A.P.R. 39; 2015 NSCA 32, refd to. [para. 4].

Turner v. Bell Mobility Inc. (2016), 612 A.R. 53; 662 W.A.C. 53; 2016 ABCA 21, refd to. [para. 4].

Drover et al. v. BCE Inc. et al., [2013] B.C.T.C. Uned. 50; 43 B.C.L.R.(5th) 146; 2013 BCSC 50, affd. (2015), 369 B.C.A.C. 231; 634 W.A.C. 231; 2015 ABCA 132, refd to. [para. 4].

Drover et al. v. BCE Inc. et al., [2013] B.C.T.C. Uned. 1341; 54 B.C.L.R.(5th) 153; 2013 BCSC 1341, affd. (2015), 369 B.C.A.C. 231; 634 W.A.C. 231; 2015 BCCA 132, refd to. [para. 4].

Pappas v. BCE Inc., 2014 ABQB 49, refd to. [para. 5].

Englund et al. v. Pfizer Canada Inc. et al. (2007), 299 Sask.R. 298; 408 W.A.C. 298; 2007 SKCA 62, refd to. [para. 11].

Turner v. Bell Mobility Inc. et al. (2015), 610 A.R. 345; 18 Alta. L.R.(6th) 217; 2015 ABQB 169, refd to. [para. 14].

Meeking v. Cash Store Inc. et al. (2013), 299 Man.R.(2d) 109; 590 W.A.C. 109; 2013 MBCA 81, leave to appeal granted, (2014), 472 N.R. 392 (S.C.C.), refd to. [para. 32].

Housen v. Nikolaisen et al., [2002] 2 S.C.R. 235; 286 N.R. 1; 219 Sask.R. 1; 272 W.A.C. 1; 2002 SCC 33, refd to. [para. 36].

Law Society of Manitoba v. Mackinnon (2014), 303 Man.R.(2d) 223; 600 W.A.C. 223; 2014 MBCA 28, refd to. [para. 36].

Elsom v. Elsom, [1989] 1 S.C.R. 1367; 96 N.R. 165, refd to. [para. 37].

Canam Enterprises Inc. v. Coles et al. (2000), 139 O.A.C. 1 (C.A.), affd. [2002] 3 S.C.R. 307; 296 N.R. 257; 167 O.A.C. 1; 2002 SCC 63, refd to. [para. 38].

Danyluk v. Ainsworth Technologies Inc. et al., [2001] 2 S.C.R. 460; 272 N.R. 1; 149 O.A.C. 1; 2001 SCC 44, refd to. [para. 39].

Kostic v. Merrill Lynch Canada Inc. (2010), 258 Man.R.(2d) 125; 499 W.A.C. 125; 2010 MBCA 81, refd to. [para. 39].

Silver et al. v. IMAX Corp. et al., [2009] O.T.C. Uned. V72; 89 C.P.C.(6th) 273, affd. [2011] O.T.C. Uned. 1035; 105 O.R.(3d) 212; 2011 ONSC 1035, refd to. [para. 40].

Western Canadian Shopping Centres Inc. et al. v. Dutton et al., [2001] 2 S.C.R. 534; 272 N.R. 135; 286 A.R. 201; 253 W.A.C. 201; 2001 SCC 46, refd to. [para. 41].

Turon et al. v. Abbott Laboratories Ltd. et al., [2011] O.T.C. Uned. 4343; 340 D.L.R.(4th) 510; 2011 ONSC 4343, affd. [2011] O.A.C. Uned. 513; 340 D.L.R.(4th) 519; 2011 ONSC 4676 (Div. Ct.), refd to. [para. 42].

Bear et al. v. Merck Frosst Canada & Co. (2011), 385 Sask.R. 76; 536 W.A.C. 76; 2011 SKCA 152, refd to. [para. 43].

Duzan v. GlaxoSmithKline Inc. et al. (2011), 372 Sask.R. 108; 2011 SKQB 118, refd to. [para. 49].

Morguard Investments Ltd. et al. v. De Savoye, [1990] 3 S.C.R. 1077; 122 N.R. 81, refd to. [para. 51].

Van Breda et al. v. Village Resorts Ltd. et al., [2012] 1 S.C.R. 572; 429 N.R. 217; 291 O.A.C. 201; 2012 SCC 17, refd to. [para. 51].

Kaynes v. BP plc (2014), 324 O.A.C. 207; 2014 ONCA 580, leave to appeal refused [2014] SCCA No. 452, refd to. [para. 51].

Canada Post Corp. v. Lépine, [2009] 1 S.C.R. 549; 387 N.R. 91; 2009 SCC 16, refd to. [para. 52].

Fantl v. Transamerica Life Canada (2009), 249 O.A.C. 58; 95 O.R.(3d) 767; 2009 ONCA 377, refd to. [para. 58].

Toronto (City) v. Canadian Union of Public Employees, Local 79 et al., [2003] 3 S.C.R. 77; 311 N.R. 201; 179 O.A.C. 291; 2003 SCC 63, refd to. [para. 60].

Counsel:

S.N. Rosenbaum and E.F.A. Merchant, for the appellants;

K. Podrebarac and A. Melamud, for the respondents, Bell;

K.E. Thomson, for the respondents, Rogers;

J.N. Grubb, Q.C., and C.L. Bishoff, for the respondents, MTS.

This appeal was heard on March 9, 2015, before Beard, Monnin and Mainella, JJ.A., of the Manitoba Court of Appeal. The decision of the court was delivered by Monnin and Mainella, JJ.A. (Beard, J.A., concurring), on March 14, 2016.

To continue reading

Request your trial
21 practice notes
  • Strohmaier v. K.S., 2019 BCCA 388
    • Canada
    • Court of Appeal (British Columbia)
    • November 7, 2019
    ...process: see, for example, BCE Inc. v. Gillis, 2015 NSCA 32; Turner v. Bell Mobility Inc., 2016 ABCA 21; and Hafichuk-Walkin v. BCE Inc., 2016 MBCA 32. Second, and more importantly in the context here, the case management judge only referred to the conduct of MLG in Drover that involved “sh......
  • Asquith v. George Weston Limited, 2018 BCSC 1557
    • Canada
    • Supreme Court of British Columbia (Canada)
    • September 11, 2018
    ...the best way, if there is a way, to choose amongst the possible jurisdictions. [72] Similarly, in Hafichuk-Walkin et al v. BCE Inc et al, 2016 MBCA 32, the court when considering duplicative class actions with no legitimate purpose [57] Subject to resolving choice of law issues, we see litt......
  • Bancroft-Snell v. Visa Canada Corporation, 2016 ONCA 896
    • Canada
    • Court of Appeal (Ontario)
    • November 26, 2016
    ...152; Duzan; Turon; BCE Inc. v. Gillis; Drover v. BCE Inc., 2013 BCSC 1341, [2014] 4 W.W.R. 554; Hafichuk-Walkin et al. v. BCE Inc. et al., 2016 MBCA 32, 395 D.L.R. (4th) 734, leave to appeal to S.C.C. requested. While these decisions did not involve the approval of fees or fee sharing arran......
  • Wilson v. Depuy International Ltd., 2018 BCSC 1192
    • Canada
    • Supreme Court of British Columbia (Canada)
    • July 16, 2018
    ...there was any reason that I should call the conduct in the Ontario Action into question. As stated in Hafichuk-Walkin v. BCE Inc., 2016 MBCA 32, leave to appeal ref’d [2016] S.C.C.A. No. 217: [55] We are satisfied that the motion judge was entitled to proceed, in the absence of cogent evide......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
16 cases
  • Strohmaier v. K.S., 2019 BCCA 388
    • Canada
    • Court of Appeal (British Columbia)
    • November 7, 2019
    ...process: see, for example, BCE Inc. v. Gillis, 2015 NSCA 32; Turner v. Bell Mobility Inc., 2016 ABCA 21; and Hafichuk-Walkin v. BCE Inc., 2016 MBCA 32. Second, and more importantly in the context here, the case management judge only referred to the conduct of MLG in Drover that involved “sh......
  • Asquith v. George Weston Limited, 2018 BCSC 1557
    • Canada
    • Supreme Court of British Columbia (Canada)
    • September 11, 2018
    ...the best way, if there is a way, to choose amongst the possible jurisdictions. [72] Similarly, in Hafichuk-Walkin et al v. BCE Inc et al, 2016 MBCA 32, the court when considering duplicative class actions with no legitimate purpose [57] Subject to resolving choice of law issues, we see litt......
  • Bancroft-Snell v. Visa Canada Corporation, 2016 ONCA 896
    • Canada
    • Court of Appeal (Ontario)
    • November 26, 2016
    ...152; Duzan; Turon; BCE Inc. v. Gillis; Drover v. BCE Inc., 2013 BCSC 1341, [2014] 4 W.W.R. 554; Hafichuk-Walkin et al. v. BCE Inc. et al., 2016 MBCA 32, 395 D.L.R. (4th) 734, leave to appeal to S.C.C. requested. While these decisions did not involve the approval of fees or fee sharing arran......
  • Wilson v. Depuy International Ltd., 2018 BCSC 1192
    • Canada
    • Supreme Court of British Columbia (Canada)
    • July 16, 2018
    ...there was any reason that I should call the conduct in the Ontario Action into question. As stated in Hafichuk-Walkin v. BCE Inc., 2016 MBCA 32, leave to appeal ref’d [2016] S.C.C.A. No. 217: [55] We are satisfied that the motion judge was entitled to proceed, in the absence of cogent evide......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
5 firm's commentaries

VLEX uses login cookies to provide you with a better browsing experience. If you click on 'Accept' or continue browsing this site we consider that you accept our cookie policy. ACCEPT