A decision of the Ontario Superior Court of Justice released June 30, 2010 allows the owner-operators of several hundred drivers’ license and vehicle registration offices to proceed by way of a class action against the Ontario government over alleged under-compensation.

Privately-owned issuing offices carry out much of Ontario’s responsibility for issuing drivers’ licenses and vehicle registrations. Private issuers are independently-owned businesses which are paid according to contracts written by Ontario. Over the past decade, several reports, including reports of the province’s Auditor General, have called attention to the inadequacy of the issuers’ compensation.

The court found that the lawsuit meets all of the criteria for class-action status. “This is a major step forward for the issuers in their effort to obtain their fair compensation for the important job which they carry out on behalf of the government,” according to plaintiffs’ lawyer, Allan D.J. Dick. Added Dick: “the private issuers have no influence over their compensation and do not have any of the protections of employees. They are totally dependent on the government for fair compensation.”

The issuers seek substantial additions to their compensation going back to August 2003 and an update of their current compensation formula in the future.

The decision in Mayotte v. Ontario is available at: https://www.sotosllp.com/class-actions/licence-issuers/

Private issuing offices have operated since 1917 and are an example of outsourcing of government services in communities across Ontario. Background information on the private issuers, including the reports of the Auditor General, is available at: http://www.omvlia.com/.

The licence issuers are represented by Sotos LLP, Canada’s leading franchise law firm.

For further information: Allan D.J. Dick at adjdick@sotosllp.com or David Sterns at dsterns@sotosllp.com, Sotos LLP, 416-977-0007, www.sotosllp.com