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RAHIM AND RHIA BASNET V. THE MINISTER OF IMMIGRATION, DIVERSITY AND INCLUSION AND THE GOVERNMENT OF QUEBEC

CLASS ACTION AGAINST THE MINISTRY OF IMMIGRATION, DIVERSITY AND INCLUSIVENESS OF QUEBEC (THE “MIDI”)

C.C.M. 500-06-000660-130

NOTICE OF CLASS ACTION AUTHORIZATION

Read this notice carefully as it may affect your legal rights.

If you applied to immigrate to Québec in the “skilled worker” class between 2009 and March 2017, you may be a member of the class action that was authorized by Justice Pepita Capriolo of the Superior Court of Québec on February 19, 2018 for the following groups of persons (the “Class Members”):

Group 1

All individuals who filed an application with the Ministère de l’Immigration et des Communautés culturelles du Québec for a selection certificate in the “skilled worker” category prior to July 8, 2013:

  • Whose application had not reached the preliminary processing stage as of August 1, 2013;
  • Whose application included form A-1520-AA or A-1520-AF containing the phrase “Your application for a selection certificate will be processed based on regulations in effect when it was submitted” or similar language; and
  • Whose application has been or will be refused by the Minister because, due to the retroactive application of August 1, 2013 amendments to the Regulation respecting the weighting applicable to the selection of foreign nationals, CSLR I-0.2, r.2., the individuals no longer accumulated enough points to pass preliminary processing or to be selected.

Group 2

All individuals who filed an application with the Ministère de l’Immigration et des Communautés culturelles du Québec for a selection certificate in the “skilled worker” category prior to July 8, 2013:

  • Whose application had not reached the preliminary processing stage as of August 1, 2013; and
  • Whose application has been or will be refused by the Minister because, due to the retroactive application of the August 1, 2013 amendments to the Regulation respecting the weighting applicable to the selection of foreign nationals, CSLR I-0.2, r.2., the individuals no longer cumulated enough points to pass preliminary processing or to be selected.

Group 3

All individuals who filed an application with the Ministère de l’Immigration, de la Diversité et de l’Inclusion du Québec for a selection certificate in the “skilled worker” category:

  • Whose application had not reached the preliminary processing stage as of March 8, 2017; and
  • Whose application has been or will be refused by the Minister because, due to the retroactive application of the March 8, 2017 amendments to the Regulation respecting the weighting applicable to the selection of foreign nationals, CSLR I-0.2, r.2., the individuals no longer cumulated enough points to pass preliminary processing or to be selected.

PURPOSE OF THIS NOTICE

On August 23, 2016, Rahim (the “Class Representative”) instituted proceedings in the Superior Court of Quebec (the “Court”) seeking permission to bring a class action against the Minister on behalf of the Class (the “Application for Authorization”). On May 16, 2017, the Application for Authorization was amended to add Rhia Basnet as Class Representative for Group 3.

The Application for Authorization alleges that the Minister was unjustly enriched, acted in bad faith and abused her rights contrary to the provisions of the Civil Code of Québec by failing to offer a reimbursement of application fees paid by those individuals whose CSQ applications became doomed to fail as a result of the application of August 1, 2013 and March 8, 2017 amendments to the Regulation respecting the weighting applicable to the selection of foreign nationals, CSLR I-0.2, r.2.

Mr. Rahim and Ms. Basnet seek reimbursement of application fees for all Class Members.

On February 19, 2018, the Court authorized the Class Representatives to institute a class action in the judicial District of Montréal on behalf of the Class Members, and identified the following principal issues to be dealt with collectively:

a)  Should the Minister be condemned to reimburse the fees collected for the applications of the Group Members who do not opt out of the proposed class action?
And, in particular:
b)  Were the Group Members impoverished, and the Minister enriched, in the amount of the application fees paid, the whole without juridical reason?
c)  What is the amount of the Group Members’ impoverishment and the Minister’s enrichment?
d)  Alternately, did the Minister commit an extra-contractual fault and act in bad faith?

i)  If so, what is the amount of damages suffered by the Group Members as a direct result of the Minister’s faults?

e)  In all cases, can the aggregate amount of the fees to be reimbursed be awarded on a collective basis?

The conclusions sought in relation to these questions are as follows:

I.  GRANT the Petitioners’ action against Respondent;

II.  CONDEMN the Respondent to pay to each Group Member who have not opted out of the class action an amount equivalent to the fees paid for their applications for a selection certificate in the skilled worker category filed prior to July 8, 2013, or the fees paid for applications doomed to failure by the 2017 amendments;

III.  ORDER the collective recovery of all amounts to be paid by the Respondent to the Group Members;

THE WHOLE with costs, including the costs of publication of notices.

OPTING OUT OF THE CLASS ACTION

If you wish to remain a Class Member in the class action, you have nothing to do.

If you wish to opt out of the class action, you must advise the clerk of the Superior Court for the District of Montreal within 60 days of receiving this notice by registered mail to 1 Notre-Dame Street East, Montreal, Quebec, H2Y 1B6. If you elect to opt out, you will not be eligible for any of the benefits of an eventual judgment on the merits.

Any Class Member who does not opt out before the deadline will be bound by judgments to follow in the class action, including any final judgment on the merits.

This means that if the action against the Minister is ultimately successful, you may be entitled to reimbursement of the fees you paid to file an application for a CSQ. If the action against the Minister is unsuccessful, you will not be able to bring or maintain your own individual claim against the Minister in relation to the matters alleged in these proceedings.

All class members have the right to seek intervenor status in the class action. However, no class member other than the representative plaintiffs or an intervenor may be required to pay legal costs arising from the class action.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION AND QUESTIONS

For any questions concerning the Authorization Order and the process that will follow, please communicate with the Class Representative’s counsel:

Me Olga Redko
oredko@imk.ca
IMK LLP
3500 De Maisonneuve Boulevard West
Suite 1400
Montréal, Québec  H3Z 3C1

T: 514 934-7742 | F: 514 935-2999

THIS NOTICE WAS AUTHORIZED BY THE HONOURABLE PEPITA CAPRIOLO, J.C.S.

______________________________________________________________________________________

Notice of Application for Authorization to Institute a Class Action: Rahim and Rhia Basnet v. The Minister of Immigration, Diversity and Inclusion and The Government of Quebec

For more information about this class action, please contact Catherine McKenzie cmckenzie@imk.ca or Olga Redko at oredko@imk.ca or call 514 935-4460.

IMK LLP has filed an Application for Authorization to Institute a Class Action on behalf of the proposed class representatives, Rahim and Rhia Basnet, against the Minister of Immigration, Diversity and Inclusion (the “MIDI”) and the Government of Quebec. The MIDI and the Government of Québec are alleged to have retroactively altered the number of points awarded in certain categories to applicants for Québec selection certificates, or the number of points required for applicants to obtain a selection certificate, thereby dooming thousands of applications to failure without offering to reimburse individuals for the fees they incurred in submitting an application.

The proposed class includes the following three groups:

Group 1: All individuals who filed an application with the Ministère de l’Immigration et des Communautés culturelles du Québec for a selection certificate in the “skilled worker” category prior to July 8, 2013; whose application had not reached the preliminary processing stage as of August 1, 2013; whose application included form A-1520-AA or A-1520-AF containing the phrase “Your application for a selection certificate will be processed based on regulations in effect when it was submitted” or similar language; and whose application, as at the date of final judgment herein, has been refused by the Minister because, due to the retroactive application of the August 1, 2013 amendments to immigration regulations, the individuals no longer accumulated enough points to pass preliminary processing or to be selected.

Group 2: All individuals who filed an application with the Ministère de l’Immigration et des Communautés culturelles du Québec for a selection certificate in the “skilled worker” category prior to July 8, 2013, whose application had not reached the preliminary processing stage as of August 1, 2013; and whose application, as at the date of final judgment herein, has been refused by the Minister because, due to the retroactive application of the August 1, 2013 amendments to immigration regulations, the individuals no longer cumulated enough points to pass preliminary processing or to be selected.

Group 3: All individuals who filed an application with the Ministère de l’Immigration, Diversité et Inclusion Québec for a selection certificate in the “skilled worker” category, whose application had not reached the preliminary processing stage as of March 8, 2017, and whose application, as at the date of final judgment herein, has been refused by the Minister because, due to the retroactive application of the March 8, 2017 amendments to the immigration regulations, the individuals no longer cumulated enough points to pass preliminary processing or to be selected.

The action alleges that in dooming applications for Québec selection certificates to failure while refusing to reimburse the individuals affected, the MIDI and the Government of Québec committed a contractual or extra-contractual fault, or alternatively unjustly enriched themselves at the expense of the affected applicants. The suit seeks compensatory damages in an amount to be determined at trial.

Under Quebec law, everyone in Quebec who is a member of the class is automatically included unless they decide to opt out. The opt-out procedure will be determined at a later date by the Court if the case is authorized, so there is nothing that you are required to do right now. However, if you have information about the MIDI or the Government of Quebec’s actions as they relate to this claim, or the impact these actions have had on you, please contact us at cmckenzie@imk.ca or oredko@imk.ca or call 514-935-4460 and ask to speak to Catherine McKenzie or Olga Redko.