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New Developments in Federal Court Class Action Suit

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There have been important new developments in the legal case against Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC), which challenges their plan to terminate most Federal Skilled Worker applications submitted prior to February 27, 2008. These new developments appear to be technical in nature and should not affect the outcome of the case, one way or the other.

Lawyers for the applicants were scheduled to make preliminary arguments in a Class Action case in Federal Court on November 23, 2012. If they would have succeeded in their preliminary arguments, the Court then would have scheduled a future date for next steps in the Class Action Suit and that future date likely would have been months from now.

Instead, all participating lawyers will proceed by way of “test cases”. The Court has made dates available (January 14th through January 16th, 2013) in Toronto, during which time lawyers, including Attorney David Cohen and Mario D. Bellissimo, will have the opportunity to present arguments. This will allow applicants to have “their day in court” much sooner than if lawyers had proceeded by way of a Class Action.

A test case is different from a Class Action in the following way. In a test case, a lawyer has the chance to present arguments on behalf of a single client. The decision the Court renders in the test case will apply not only to that client, but to other clients represented by the lawyer in the same circumstances.

The thrust of the argument that will be presented by Attorneys Cohen and Bellissimo is that the intended action of CIC (termination of the applications) is unconstitutional on the grounds that it is discriminatory against individuals based on their country of origin (Section 15 of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms). If the Court decides in their favor then the law empowering CIC to terminate the applications will be struck down. This outcome would apply not only to the test case but to all of the other clients the attorneys represent in this matter as well.

In anticipation of having the test case heard by the Court in mid-January, 2013, lawyers for the applicants have adjourned (not withdrawn) their Class Action case. According to Attorney David Cohen, “If, for any reason, CIC takes any action to begin terminating applications before there is a decision on our test case, we would go back to the Court on the Class Action case and ask for an Order that would require CIC to refrain from destroying the integrity of the Class.”

A pre-hearing conference is likely to take place during the week of December 10th, 2012.

Individuals who submitted their Federal Skilled Worker applications prior to February 27th, 2012 may still retain the representation of Attorneys Cohen and Bellissimo. If you are one of these individuals, click here to make your voice heard.



25 thoughts on “New Developments in Federal Court Class Action Suit

  1. Avatar
    rui costa

    i am a skilled worker, been working in Canada for 8 years. My downfall was me filing the wrong claim and me and my family got deported. Due to this mistake my familie’s life got set back. What can i do to return to Canada?

  2. Avatar

    For 8 long years of waiting, our dream has been shattered to pieces. It’s so unfair. Can I still join the class action lawsuit?

  3. Avatar

    This issue is a big shame on the government of Canada. It is a shame to hold on to peoples money for over 7 years and thereafter begin to attempt to cancel the application for which the money was paid. The application for the processing of the skilled worker visa/residency and the fees paid for the processing and which was accepted by the Canadian government in conivance with the CIC has by itself established a contract between the Canadian government and the Applicant(s) (The skilled worker). Cancelation of the process without a good reason will amount to fraud and breach of contract and should be treated as such. I ask that the lawyers should not only ask that the applications be processed; but they should also ask for damages on behalf of the applicatns . The conduct of the Canadian government with respect to this matter can be seen by the world as an attempt to defraud the candidates. I have not said that it is a fraud but could suggest FRAUD. It is unbelieveabale that this is coming from an assumed civilized world/country. Is the world court aware of this scam like situation? The story or act is Unbelieveable please ! Canadian Government please watch it !! You have been recorded as a great and transparent country over the years. Do not fail the trust!!!

  4. Avatar

    Susan stewart,
    Application is not promise of acceptance but holding people’s money for 8 years and keeping them on limbo has put the burden of processing – and I assume you know what the word processing means- on Canadian government. Add to this many other dimentions of the issue including faster processing of western Europe applicants as opposed to Estern Europe and Asia constitutes the bias and unfair practice which will be sanctions by courts. Jason Kenney has lied many times to court including false information about number of pending applications. He claims that he process 300,000 very fast after zapping 85,000 applications????? what a joke that only Conservative Canada would buy it. So as the voters for Cons unfortunately people of Canada have contributed to the crime.

  5. Avatar
    Susan stewart

    I have to agree with anonymous (Nov.30/2012). Many submitted applications. an application is not a promise of acceptance into PR. I do suppose however that CIC should have to look at the applications and if the applicants do not qualify then return them with their monies. I can imagine that not many applicants pre 2008 will now fit the requirements to qualify, thus the reviewing of the applications should go quickly. It is very sad that people would put their lives on hold and miss opportunities because they misunderstand what an application is. To now file a suit against CIC and thus the people of Canada as a whole is the real crime.

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