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Siskinds LLP and Siskinds Desmeules were among several firms in Canada to commence class actions regarding OxyContin drugs.

The parties to the various Canadian Oxycontin class actions reached an agreement to settle the litigation on behalf of all persons, including their estates, who at any time between January 1, 1996, and February 28, 2017, were prescribed OxyContin and/or OxyNEO in Canada.

To be eligible for compensation, people will need to fulfill various requirements, including (among other things) providing proof of valid prescriptions and proof that addiction occurred after initial prescription.

The settlement has now been approved Canada-wide and can be viewed here: Settlement Agreement

Class counsel and the claims administrator are now working towards setting up the claim filing process.

Once the process is set up, a Notice of Settlement will be published and sent to potential class members to provide information about how to make a claim and the deadline for doing so.

Developments

On June 8, 2007, the law firms of Rochon Genova LLP and Siskinds LLP filed a class action on behalf of all persons in Canada (excluding Quebec) who were prescribed and ingested Oxycontin against the manufacturers of the drug, Purdue Pharma and various affiliated entities. On May 11, 2007, Siskinds’ Québec-based affiliate, Siskinds Desmeules, also filed a similar action on behalf of Québec residents. Various other law firms in Canada also filed prospective OxyContin class actions.

On March 8 2017, the parties to various class actions (including Siskinds’ class actions) reached a Settlement Agreement to resolve the Oxycontin class action litigation across Canada. In 2017, this agreement was approved in Ontario, Quebec and Nova Scotia. The settlement agreement was also subject to court approval in Saskatchewan.

Following the 2017 approvals, notice was published in newspapers and online. This notice can be viewed here (EnglishFrench).

As the 2017 notice set out in further detail, the Saskatchewan Court needed to approve the settlement for it to be final and to have effect. At the initial Settlement Approval hearing in Saskatchewan on September 22, 2017, the Saskatchewan Court had requested additional information and further submissions to the court were made on January 5, 2018. By reasons released on March 15, 2018, the Saskatchewan Court declined to approve the settlement.

The Court invited the parties to return with additional evidence. A hearing was held with the Saskatchewan Court on September 4 & 5, 2019, to address certain issues that needed to be determined before the action could move forward. These issues were resolved, and the court permitted the parties to schedule another hearing to seek settlement approval.

Subsequently the parties were unable to schedule a new hearing for an extended period of time, in part due to the pandemic and in part due to a Stay of Proceedings against Purdue in Canada as result of Purdue’s Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing in the US.

On September 15, 2019, the Purdue group of companies filed a petition for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in the US. As a result of the bankruptcy proceedings, Class Counsel’s ongoing efforts to have the Settlement Agreement approved in Saskatchewan were the subject of a Stay of Proceedings as a result of Purdue US obtaining an Order in Canada from an Ontario court. The “Stay” essentially paused any actions against Purdue US and Purdue Canada for as long as the Stay was in place.

In the fall of 2021, the stay was partially lifted, which allowed Class Counsel to proceed in Saskatchewan to have a hearing to approve the Settlement Agreement. The continued application for Settlement Approval was finally heard in Saskatchewan on July 26 and 27, 2022, before the Honourable Chief Justice Popescul. Chief Justice Popescul released his decision on September 23, 2022, approving the settlement agreement.

The proposed national settlement agreement is now approved Canada-wide and a further notice describing the process for submitting claims for compensation will be distributed once the administration process is finalized.

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 Oxycontin class action?

You are affected by the class action and are a “member” of the class if you were prescribed and ingested Oxycontin.

What should I do to protect my rights?

To protect your rights, you should:

  1. Keep a record of medical expenses incurred—appointments not covered by your provincial health care provider, prescriptions, medical devices, etc.
  2. Keep a record of all medical treatments, including the names and contact information of the health care provider (doctor, surgeon, physiotherapist etc.).
  3. If possible, keep a journal of symptoms and note down any times when you are unable to attend work or school as a result of your symptoms.
  4. Register to receive updates on this case by filling out the form below.

If you have not done so already, contact Siskinds so that we can contact your health care providers to obtain relevant medical and pharmacy records. As time passes, it can be more difficult to collect this information.

All personal information provided to Siskinds regarding your Oxycontin use and any injuries/symptoms you may have suffered from as a result of taking Oxycontin will be kept private and confidential.

I still have a question. Who should I contact?

If you have any other questions, please complete the Get in touch form below or call 1-800-461-6166  for English inquiries or 1-877-735-3842 for French inquiries.

Documents

Quebec:

Nova Scotia:

Ontario:

Agreements and notices:

On June 8, 2007, the law firms of Rochon Genova LLP and Siskinds LLP filed a class action on behalf of all persons in Canada (excluding Quebec) who were prescribed and ingested Oxycontin against the manufacturers of the drug, Purdue Pharma and various affiliated entities. On May 11, 2007, Siskinds’ Québec-based affiliate, Siskinds Desmeules, also filed a similar action on behalf of Québec residents. Various other law firms in Canada also filed prospective OxyContin class actions.

On March 8 2017, the parties to various class actions (including Siskinds’ class actions) reached a Settlement Agreement to resolve the Oxycontin class action litigation across Canada. In 2017, this agreement was approved in Ontario, Quebec and Nova Scotia. The settlement agreement was also subject to court approval in Saskatchewan.

Following the 2017 approvals, notice was published in newspapers and online. This notice can be viewed here (EnglishFrench).

As the 2017 notice set out in further detail, the Saskatchewan Court needed to approve the settlement for it to be final and to have effect. At the initial Settlement Approval hearing in Saskatchewan on September 22, 2017, the Saskatchewan Court had requested additional information and further submissions to the court were made on January 5, 2018. By reasons released on March 15, 2018, the Saskatchewan Court declined to approve the settlement.

The Court invited the parties to return with additional evidence. A hearing was held with the Saskatchewan Court on September 4 & 5, 2019, to address certain issues that needed to be determined before the action could move forward. These issues were resolved, and the court permitted the parties to schedule another hearing to seek settlement approval.

Subsequently the parties were unable to schedule a new hearing for an extended period of time, in part due to the pandemic and in part due to a Stay of Proceedings against Purdue in Canada as result of Purdue’s Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing in the US.

On September 15, 2019, the Purdue group of companies filed a petition for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in the US. As a result of the bankruptcy proceedings, Class Counsel’s ongoing efforts to have the Settlement Agreement approved in Saskatchewan were the subject of a Stay of Proceedings as a result of Purdue US obtaining an Order in Canada from an Ontario court. The “Stay” essentially paused any actions against Purdue US and Purdue Canada for as long as the Stay was in place.

In the fall of 2021, the stay was partially lifted, which allowed Class Counsel to proceed in Saskatchewan to have a hearing to approve the Settlement Agreement. The continued application for Settlement Approval was finally heard in Saskatchewan on July 26 and 27, 2022, before the Honourable Chief Justice Popescul. Chief Justice Popescul released his decision on September 23, 2022, approving the settlement agreement.

The proposed national settlement agreement is now approved Canada-wide and a further notice describing the process for submitting claims for compensation will be distributed once the administration process is finalized.

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 Oxycontin class action?

You are affected by the class action and are a “member” of the class if you were prescribed and ingested Oxycontin.

What should I do to protect my rights?

To protect your rights, you should:

  1. Keep a record of medical expenses incurred—appointments not covered by your provincial health care provider, prescriptions, medical devices, etc.
  2. Keep a record of all medical treatments, including the names and contact information of the health care provider (doctor, surgeon, physiotherapist etc.).
  3. If possible, keep a journal of symptoms and note down any times when you are unable to attend work or school as a result of your symptoms.
  4. Register to receive updates on this case by filling out the form below.

If you have not done so already, contact Siskinds so that we can contact your health care providers to obtain relevant medical and pharmacy records. As time passes, it can be more difficult to collect this information.

All personal information provided to Siskinds regarding your Oxycontin use and any injuries/symptoms you may have suffered from as a result of taking Oxycontin will be kept private and confidential.

I still have a question. Who should I contact?

If you have any other questions, please complete the Get in touch form below or call 1-800-461-6166  for English inquiries or 1-877-735-3842 for French inquiries.

Quebec:

Nova Scotia:

Ontario:

Agreements and notices:

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