Class Action Update May 20, 2010
What is the lawsuit about?
The claim centres entirely around the prices charged on food and other supplies purchased by the Canadian Quiznos franchisees. The claim alleges that the prices charged and the manner in which those prices are set are contrary to Canada’s Competition Act, and constitute a breach of contract and a breach of provincial franchise legislation. The claim seeks compensation on behalf of all Quiznos franchisees and an Order preventing the continuation of the defendants’ allegedly unlawful practices.
To download a copy of the statement of claim and other court documents, go to http://www.sotosllp.com/class-actions/quiznos
Who brought brought the lawsuit forward?
The statement of claim was issued on behalf of two Quiznos franchisees (known as the representative plaintiffs) under Ontario’s Class Proceedings Act.
Why was this lawsuit brought as a class action?
The issues raised in the Claim can be resolved on a common basis for all franchisees.
A class action offers more protection in light of the ongoing and unequal relationship between the franchisees and Quiznos. Because a class action is supervised by an experienced judge who has power to ensure that the proceeding unfolds fairly, franchisees have more protection than if they litigated on their own. This has been an important consideration in past franchise class actions.
Also, because only the representative plaintiffs need to work with class counsel and take a public stand, the rest of the franchisees can go about their business uninterrupted.
For more general information about what class action lawsuits are and how they work, visit http://www.sotosllp.com/class-action-faq/
What is the status of the lawsuit, as of May 19, 2010?
The current state of the case is that it has been certified as a class action and is proceeding towards trial, contingent upon the result of a forthcoming Ontario Court of Appeal decision regarding certification which is expected to be released soon.
In March 2008, a motion judge declined to certify the proceeding as a class action. However, that decision was appealed to the Divisional Court where in April 2009 the Court overturned the motion judge and held that the class action should be certified. It is this decision that is currently under appeal at the Ontario Court of Appeal.
Can Quiznos discriminate against me if I didn’t opt out?
No. Any attempt by Quiznos to discriminate against you would be unlawful and contrary to the Class Proceedings Act and the duty of fair dealing under the applicable franchise legislation.
What should I do if Quiznos requires me to sign a release of the claim in this action as a condition of consenting to the sale of my store?
If you wish to sell or assign your franchise agreement, you should contact class counsel to ensure that your right to participate in the class action is preserved.
What about franchisees whose businesses have closed or have gone bankrupt?
If a store was in operation on May 12, 2006 but has since closed, it is a member of the class.
All owners of closed stores should provide their contact information to class counsel and monitor the www.sotosllp.com/class-actions/quiznos website to remain apprised of the action.
Who will decide if a settlement offer should be accepted?
Settlement discussions are conducted between the representative plaintiffs, representatives of the defendants and their counsel.
If a settlement can be reached which is satisfactory to the representative plaintiffs and is recommended by class counsel, then it must be approved by the judge supervising the case. A settlement will only be approved if it is in the best interests of the class. Notice of any settlement will be sent to all class members before the settlement approval hearing.
Has there been any attempt to discuss settlement with Quiznos?
There was an early attempt to mediate in the winter of 2007 but it did not proceed past the preliminary stages. Class counsel is alert to meaningful opportunities for early resolution and will pursue them if they materialize.
What do the plaintiffs seek to achieve in this lawsuit?
Two things: a) Compensation for past overcharging on inventory, and b) a fair and transparent process so as to eliminate overcharging in the future.
Should I do anything differently in my dealings with Quiznos because of the lawsuit?
No. Other than for the class representatives, it is business as usual.
How will I know what is happening in the lawsuit?
Sotos LLP maintains a dedicated website for this lawsuit located at www.sotosllp.com/class-actions/quiznos . In addition, Denver Subs Canada maintains a separate site at http://www.denversubs.com/ . Information sessions will also be held periodically if there is important information to pass along.
Can I contact class counsel directly if I have further questions?
If you have questions about the class action, you may contact firstname.lastname@example.org) or (email@example.com). Non-legal questions should be directed to the Class Representatives or the members of the executive of the Denver Subs.(
What can I do to help?
If you have information which might assist, bring it to the attention of class counsel.
Contact Sotos LLP
180 Dundas Street West,
Toronto, Ontario, Canada