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Simon Shields, Lawyer

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Parties - Trade Unions

Lawrence v. International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (Ont CA, 2017)

In this case the Court of Appeal sets out the appropriate manner to include a trade union as a party to litigation:
[15] It is well established that the Rights of Labour Act precludes a trade union from being named as a party and that an action brought in violation of the Act will be struck or dismissed: Nippissing Hotel Ltd. et al. v. Hotel & Restaurant Employees & Bartenders International Union et al., 1963 CanLII 149 (ON SC), [1963] 2 O.R. 169 (H.C.J.); Dover Corp. (Canada) Ltd. v. CAW-Canada, Local 27, [1996] O.J. No. 2319 (Gen. Div.); Active Canada Inc. v. Formosa, [2002] O.J. No. 2551 (S.C.J.); Burley v. O.P.S.E.U., [2004] O.J. No. 4431 (S.C.J.).

[16] The proper way to sue a trade union is to obtain a representation order pursuant to r. 12.07, authorizing one or more members of the union to defend a proceeding on behalf of all the other members. Rule 12.08 facilitates a similar procedure by providing that a representative order may be made for members of an unincorporated association or trade union to bring a proceeding on behalf of all the members where a class action would be unduly expensive or inconvenient.

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