On January 15, Judge Jocelyn Geoffroy, of the Superior Court, approved the settlement agreement between Industrial Alliance and the plaintiffs, as part of a class action initiated in 2012.
The representative, André Dorval, was defended by Létourneau Létourneau Bantoiu (LLB) Avocats, a Quebec firm. More than 200 people are part of the group of applicants, that is to say individuals and their dependents who have subscribed to a Uniflex universal life insurance contract offered by the respondent, which was in effect on October 5, 2009.
Mr. Dorval accuses Industrial Alliance of having “systematically misled members, when selling Uniflex life insurance contracts, by showing them that the payment of the minimum premium, as this expression is defined in the Uniflex contract, would be sufficient to maintain the insurance in force their life during ”, summarizes the judgment.
The agreement, reached last August, following a mediation chaired by the Honorable Paul-Arthur Gendreau, a former judge of the Quebec Court of Appeal, provides for a payment of $ 20 million to the group of claimants. Seven people opposed this agreement, believing that the insurance company was getting away with it, but Judge Geoffroy believes instead that this agreement allows members to obtain fair compensation.
Interesting fact: the plaintiff’s lawyers – My Mihnea Bantoiu, Julien delisle and Audrey Letourneau – agreed to reduce their fees from 25% to 12.5% of the total amount of the settlement, in order to maximize the amount to be distributed to members. Their fees will represent $ 2.5 million, plus applicable taxes.
Industrial Alliance was represented by Mes Laurence Bich-Carrière and Bernard Larocque, from Lavery.