Class actions are a significant component of the product liability
landscape in Canada. There are many products cases in which traditional
litigation will be cost-prohibitive, because damages are modest.
Further, an alleged design defect in a product will typically affect a
significant number of people. Class proceedings offer the promise of
efficient and affordable access to justice for persons similarly
adversely affected by a product. Straightforward products cases have
accordingly been referred to as “ideal”, or “quintessential” class
proceedings. However, many product liability cases are not
well-suited for class proceedings. This chapter provides background
information about product liability class actions in Canada, and
guidance on the types of product liability claims most amenable to class
treatment. Published in The International Comparative Legal Guide to
Product Liability 2015.