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This action is one of approximately 40 class actions that have been commenced regarding alleged price-fixing of automobile parts. The unlawful conspiracies relate to the prices of parts installed by automakers in new vehicles. The class actions affect any person in Canada who purchased or leased a new vehicle containing the relevant parts or who purchased the relevant parts for installation in a new vehicle (ie. automakers).

The air conditioning systems class action alleges that the Defendants unlawfully conspired to fix, increase, and/or maintain the price of air conditioning systems sold in North America and elsewhere.

Air conditioning systems are systems that cool the interior environment of a vehicle and are part of an automobile’s thermal system. Air conditioning systems include the following components: compressors, condensers, HVAC units (blower motors, actuators, flaps, evaporators, heater cores, and filters embedded in a plastic housing), control panels, sensors, and associated hoses and pipes.

Developments

The auto parts class actions (including the air conditioning systems class action) are being case managed together by Justice Belobaba in Toronto. The class actions are in the early stages.

By order dated October 7, 2014, the action was discontinued on a without costs and without prejudice basis as against the Defendant Mitsubishi Heavy Industries America, Inc.

FAQs

What is a Class Action?

A class action is a lawsuit that is brought by one or more persons on behalf of a larger group of people whose claims share common legal and/or factual issues. Class actions provide a cost-effective way for groups of people with common interests to pursue a legal claim.

What does “certification” mean?

Certification is the motion where the court determines whether the action can properly be pursued as a class action. The court will consider factors such as whether the claims of the class members raise common legal and/or factual issues and whether a class action is the preferable method of pursuing the claims (as opposed to other methods, such as individual actions).

Do I have to pay anything to participate in the class action?

Class action lawyers are usually paid on a contingency basis. This means that class counsel are only paid if successful. Class counsel are paid a percentage of any settlement or court award. Class counsel fees are subject to court approval.

Who is affected by the air conditioning systems class action?

You are affected by the class action and are a “member” of the class if you are a person in Canada who between January 1, 2001 and March 1, 2010:

  • purchased or leased a new vehicle in Canada; or
  • purchased an air conditioning system (or a component of one) in Canada.

Can I join the class action?

There are no steps required to “join” the class action. Assuming you fall within the scope of the class definition, you are automatically included in the class action unless you “opt-out” (exclude yourself from the class action).

Can I exclude myself from the class action?

Yes. After the class action is certified, you will be given an opportunity to opt-out (exclude yourself from the class action). If you opt-out, you will not be able to participate in any settlement or court award achieved in the class action, but you will be able to pursue your claim on an individual basis. Generally speaking, you would only want to opt-out of a class action if you intend to bring individual litigation. In most circumstances, it is more cost effective to participate in a class action because the legal costs are spread over a large number of people, making it more economic for any individual class member to obtain relief.

What should I do to protect my rights?

To protect your rights, you should:

  1. Keep records of any purchases or leases of new vehicles from 1995 onwards. This period covers the entire duration of all auto parts price-fixing cases. You might be affected by multiple auto parts price-fixing cases.
  2. Keep records of any purchases of air conditioning systems for installation in new vehicles from January 1, 2001 to March 1, 2010.
  3. Register to receive updates about the class action by completing the form on this page.

I still have a question. Who should I contact?

If you have a question, please use the contact form provided on this page.

Documents

October 7, 2014 Discontinue Order against Mitsubishi Heavy Industries America, Inc.

The auto parts class actions (including the air conditioning systems class action) are being case managed together by Justice Belobaba in Toronto. The class actions are in the early stages.

By order dated October 7, 2014, the action was discontinued on a without costs and without prejudice basis as against the Defendant Mitsubishi Heavy Industries America, Inc.

What is a Class Action?

A class action is a lawsuit that is brought by one or more persons on behalf of a larger group of people whose claims share common legal and/or factual issues. Class actions provide a cost-effective way for groups of people with common interests to pursue a legal claim.

What does “certification” mean?

Certification is the motion where the court determines whether the action can properly be pursued as a class action. The court will consider factors such as whether the claims of the class members raise common legal and/or factual issues and whether a class action is the preferable method of pursuing the claims (as opposed to other methods, such as individual actions).

Do I have to pay anything to participate in the class action?

Class action lawyers are usually paid on a contingency basis. This means that class counsel are only paid if successful. Class counsel are paid a percentage of any settlement or court award. Class counsel fees are subject to court approval.

Who is affected by the air conditioning systems class action?

You are affected by the class action and are a “member” of the class if you are a person in Canada who between January 1, 2001 and March 1, 2010:

  • purchased or leased a new vehicle in Canada; or
  • purchased an air conditioning system (or a component of one) in Canada.

Can I join the class action?

There are no steps required to “join” the class action. Assuming you fall within the scope of the class definition, you are automatically included in the class action unless you “opt-out” (exclude yourself from the class action).

Can I exclude myself from the class action?

Yes. After the class action is certified, you will be given an opportunity to opt-out (exclude yourself from the class action). If you opt-out, you will not be able to participate in any settlement or court award achieved in the class action, but you will be able to pursue your claim on an individual basis. Generally speaking, you would only want to opt-out of a class action if you intend to bring individual litigation. In most circumstances, it is more cost effective to participate in a class action because the legal costs are spread over a large number of people, making it more economic for any individual class member to obtain relief.

What should I do to protect my rights?

To protect your rights, you should:

  1. Keep records of any purchases or leases of new vehicles from 1995 onwards. This period covers the entire duration of all auto parts price-fixing cases. You might be affected by multiple auto parts price-fixing cases.
  2. Keep records of any purchases of air conditioning systems for installation in new vehicles from January 1, 2001 to March 1, 2010.
  3. Register to receive updates about the class action by completing the form on this page.

I still have a question. Who should I contact?

If you have a question, please use the contact form provided on this page.

October 7, 2014 Discontinue Order against Mitsubishi Heavy Industries America, Inc.

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