Families Circulating Petition Requesting Ontario Government to Pay Legal Costs of Institution Class Action Suits

Families to Circulate Petition Requesting Ontario Government to Pay Legal Costs of Institution Class Action Suits by Marilyn Dolmage

A group of allies has created a petition to Premier Wynne and the Ontario Legislature, that can be shared electronically concerning the Huronia, Rideau and SouthWestern Regional Centre class action settlements. They are asking that the government pay legal costs so that there will be more money available for the people who were harmed in these institutions.

Please consider signing and please share this widely - as soon as possible:
http://www.change.org/en-CA/petitions/premier-kathleen-wynne-we-ask-that-ontario-s-premier-wynne-be-led-by-her-sense-of-moral-purpose-and-use-her-power-to-pay-the-legal-costs-of-the-class-actions-from-sources-over-and-above-the-combined-67-7-m-settlement?share_id=CKWExpyNMj&utm_campaign=share_button_action_box&utm_medium=facebook&utm_source=share_petition

The total amount payable at present in the 3 settlements - all combined - comes to $67.7 million.

Koskie Minsky, the law firm handling the suits, plans to ask the court to approve total legal fees of $14 million, to be shared among all 3 groups, according to the size of their settlements. Additional deductions from the settlement funds include:
• HST of $1.82 million (government lawyers did NOT agree to consider waiving the provincial portion)
• over $1.5 million for disbursements and
• 10% of the money paid out to the class to be paid to the Class Proceedings
Fund.

The Fairness Hearing regarding Rideau and Southwestern will be held February 24th. and 25th. This is a process similar to that which took place for Huronia, on December 3rd at which the judge will determine if the settlement should be approved by the court.

As well, the judge will decide what fees should be paid to the lawyers for all three settlements, during the Fee Hearing part of the process on February 25th.
You can read what the lawyers are asking for (and why) in these 2 documents:

http://www.kmlaw.ca/site_documents/FactumRet2425_12feb14_3.pdf and

http://www.kmlaw.ca/site_documents/080659_MotionRecordClassCounsel_26nov13.pdf

There was a great show of support among and for Huronia survivors in court in December.Please consider coming to show the judge and media your support for all 3 class actions.

The claims process is not likely to begin until Spring. The Rideau and Southwestern actions need time to "catch up" to Huronia so that all 3 can proceed together.

We suggest that people will feel more confident about making a claim if they obtain their institution files first. It can also help them put together more of the details of their time there.

The terms of the settlement instruct the claims reviewers to believe the claimants' own version of what happened to them, although there is a provision that the government might later search for evidence to contradict them, in the institution file.

Seldom will those records say that abuse happened and it is highly unlikely that anything is written to say abuse did NOT happen.

We hope we have worked out a smooth process, and there is updated info about accessing files at http://www.kmlaw.ca/Case-Central/Overview/?rid=99

Thank you.

Marilyn Dolmage
416-531-8553

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