Q: Why are you bringing this class action lawsuit?
A: The lawyers at Gilbert McGloan Gillis have spoken with many frustrated west side residents since these plumbing, appliance, and water issues began cropping up last year. Some of you have attended our free bi-weekly legal advice clinic in an effort to explore and better understand your options. We understand that many of you have suffered significant and unexpected financial losses and that legal representation is also, in many cases, prohibitively expensive. West side residents are now expected to dedicate a significant amount of their free time to municipal information sessions and meetings with city officials. We understand that you work hard for your money, and we believe your time should be your own. After researching the issues that have been brought to us by residents, the team at Gilbert McGloan Gillis -- which itself includes several west side residents -- decided to represent the interests of west siders moving forward in an effort to secure the best possible deal for the people of Saint John.
Q: If I sign on as a member of this class action, will I have to give you money?
A: No. The team at Gilbert McGloan Gillis will only receive financial compensation if they are successful in securing a settlement deal.
Q: Does this mean that a settlement is guaranteed?
A: No. The city has engaged CBCL to better understand these ongoing issues. We will employ our own team of experts to verify the results of the study. We cannot predict the outcome of this investigation, nor can we guarantee a result, but we are committed to securing the best possible deal for west side residents.
Q: How do you get paid?
A: If this action is successful, we will receive a standard percentage of the settlement as set by the Law Society of New Brunswick.
Q: Do you have experience with these sorts of cases?
A: The team at Gilbert McGloan Gillis has brought many successful class action lawsuits through the years. Most recently, we secured a multi-million dollar settlement for New Brunswick residents who had been negatively affected by the Volkswagen emissions scandal.
Q: The city of Saint John is broke. Where will this money come from?
A: We understand and appreciate the financial challenges facing our city. Mayor Don Darling has stated that any compensation offered west side residents will be paid for by ratepayers themselves. We find this response unacceptable and will explore other possible sources of funds -- such as the city's insurance policy against litigation. If it is determined that the city is responsible for some compensation to west side residents and business owners that is not covered by insurance, it will be up to city lawyers to seek damages from responsible parties through their own litigation process.
Q: Why haven't you brought this action against the companies responsible for planning installing the new water system?
A: We represent the residents of west Saint John in this action, whose relationship is with the city. While the city has a relationship with the responsible corporations, the residents of west Saint John do not. If this action is successful, the city may wish to pursue legal actions against responsible entities through their own litigation process.