Frequently asked questions (FAQS)


1. What is a class action? (back to top)

A class action is a lawsuit that is brought by one or more persons on behalf of a larger group of people whose claims share common legal or factual issues.

In a class action, the Plaintiff acts as “Representative Plaintiff” and sues on behalf of themselves and other people who have similar claims. This group of people is called the “Class,” and the people in the Class are called “Class Members.”

One court resolves the issues for all Class Members. The Class Members are therefore bound by the court’s decisions in the class action unless they opt out.

Class actions provide a cost-effective way for groups of people with common interests to pursue a legal claim.

The lawyers who act for the Representative Plaintiff are called “Class Counsel”.

In this case, there are three class actions:

  • Brazeau v. Canada (Attorney General) (CV-15-53262500-CP);
  • Reddock v. Canada (Attorney General) (CV-17-570771-00CP);
  • Gallone v. Canada (Attorney General) (500-06-000781-167).

The Court has appointed Koskie Minsky LLP in Brazeau, McCarthy Tétrault LLP and Koskie Minsky LLP in Reddock, and Trudel Johnston & Lespérance in Gallone to serve as Class Counsel.

2. What are these class actions about? (back to top)

Click here to view the video

Three (3) separate class actions lawsuits have ended with the Courts finding that the rights of inmates placed in administrative segregation while incarcerated in federal correctional institutions were violated.

A global award of approximately $28 million is available to pay all eligible claimants, known as Class Members, who make a claim. Additional money may be claimed by eligible Class Members in some cases.

For links to the relevant legal documents, click here.

3. Who is included in the Federal Administrative Segregation Class Actions? (back to top)

You can make a claim if all the facts listed in either Option A OR Option B apply to you:

Option A

  • You stayed in Administrative Segregation in a federal penitentiary anywhere in Canada
  • for 16 consecutive days or more
  • ON or AFTER March 3 2011.

OR

Option B

  • You stayed in Administrative Segregation in a federal penitentiary anywhere in Canada
  • For any length of time
  • ON or AFTER July 20 2009
  • AND you were diagnosed by a medical doctor with a mental disorder or a borderline personality disorder prior or during your incarceration AND you suffer(ed) serious impairment as a result of your disorder and reported such to Correctional Service of Canada (CSC). 1

1 Some exceptions may apply.

If you think that you meet these conditions, you must submit a Claim Form no later than September 7, 2022 to claim damages.

You can find the complete class definitions for Brazeau, Reddock and Gallone in the class actions Protocol2 here.

2 The Protocol is the official document detailing the steps regarding claims processing for the Federal Administrative Segregation Class Actions.

Voluntary or not, all Administrative Segregation counts.

If you were placed in Administrative Segregation ONLY before July 20, 2009, you should contact the Claims Administrator to provide details, because you may still be entitled to money if you can prove you could not make a claim before.

4. How much money could I get? (back to top)

The amount you may receive depends on various factors, especially which type of claim you submit (known as a “Track”).

TRACK COMPENSATION
Amount TRACK 1 TRACK 2 TRACK 3

Only an equal share of the $28 million lump sum divided among claimants

UP TO $50,000

(claimants will receive at least an equal share of the $28 million lump sum).

MORE THAN $50,000. NO LIMIT to your claim. (claimants will receive at least an equal share of the $28 million lump sum).

Documents

Claim Form
+
Track Selection Form

Claim Form
+
Track Selection Form
+
Evidence and written arguments on the psychological or physical harm caused by Administrative Segregation.

Claim Form
+
Track Selection Form
+
Evidence and written arguments on the psychological or physical harm caused by Administrative Segregation.

Process

NO Court hearing.
NO medical expert.

A Medical/Manager Expert will review your evidence and recommend an award for approval by the Court.

Court hearing at which the judge will review your evidence and any evidence that Canada presents. The judge will then determine the amount of your award, if any.

Fees

NO additional legal fee

Legal fee of UP TO 15% on the additional money obtained, reasonable disbursements and levy to the Fonds d’aide aux actions collectives or the Class Proceeding Fund. But NO legal fee on the amount equivalent to the equal share of the $28 million.

ANY legal fee negotiated between you and your representative on the additional money obtained, reasonable disbursements and levy to the Fonds d’aide aux actions collectives or the Class Proceeding Fund. These fees will need to be approved by the Courts. But NO legal fee on the amount equivalent to the equal share of the $28 million.

Your representative will advise you which compensation Track would best suit you after reviewing your Correctional Service of Canada file. If you are not represented, you will need to choose by yourself. A Track Selection Form will be provided to you.

5. How do I participate in these class actions? (back to top)

All claims must be received by the Claims Administrator (if claiming using a paper Claim Form, must be post-marked by Canada Post) no later than September 7, 2022.

CLAIM ONLINE here it is fast, easy and secure, or download and print the Claim Form here.

You can also send your Claim Form by mail at this address :

Epiq Class Action Services Canada Inc.
Attention: Federal Administrative Segregation Class Actions Claims Administrator
P.O. Box 507 STN B
Ottawa ON K1P 5P6

6. What can I do? (back to top)

Here are your three (3) options:

Submit a Claim

If you want to receive money, you MUST SUBMIT a Claim to the Claims Administrator NO LATER THAN SEPTEMBER 7, 2022 .

CLAIM ONLINE here it is fast, easy and secure, or download and print the Claim Form here.

Do Nothing

If you do not make a claim, you will not get any money and you will give up the right to get money in the future.

Opt Out (Exclude yourself)

The courts had already granted an initial period to opt-out of the Class actions which is expired.

But if you do not want to be part of this Class action, you might be allowed to opt-out if you were first placed in administrative segregation after December 12, 2016 and have not previously had an opportunity to opt out.

To opt-out, the Claims Administrator must receive a letter signed and dated clearly stating your wish to opt-out NO LATER THAN OCTOBER 7, 2021 .

By opting out, you will lose your right to receive any money from these class actions.

Click here, for more information.

7. How do I submit a Claim? (back to top)

Click here to view the video

If you want to receive money, you MUST SUBMIT a claim NO LATER THAN SEPTEMBER 7, 2022.

1. Online – CLAIM ONLINE here - it’s fast, easy and secure.

OR

2. By Email or Fax – Download and print the Claim Form here and send it to the Claims Administrator

OR

3. By Mail – Download and print the Claim Form here and send it to the Claims Administrator. If a paper Claim Form is submitted by mail, the postmark on the envelope will be considered as the day the Claim Form was submitted to the Claims Administrator.

Please contact the Claims Administrator if you would like to request that a Claim Form be sent to you by mail, email or fax.

8. Is there a deadline to submit a Claim? (back to top)

Yes, there is. You must submit your claim NO LATER THAN SEPTEMBER 7, 2022.

9. What if I miss the deadline to claim? (back to top)

If you do not submit your Claim Form NO LATER THAN SEPTEMBER 7, 2022, you will lose your right to get money. Even if you get special permission from the Court to submit a late claim, you will not be entitled to a share of the lump sum money.

10. What if I do not remember by Finger Print Section (FPS) identification number? (back to top)

The Fingerprint Section Number is 7 digits including numbers and a letter, ex: 123456A.

If you do not remember your FPS identification number, you may refer to your CSC identification card to locate it. Otherwise, the Claims Administrator may need to contact you in order to confirm your identity. Your FPS is not required for your claim form to be accepted.

11. Can I submit a claim on behalf of a Class Member? (back to top)

Yes, you can submit a claim on behalf of someone who is:

  • now deceased and was alive :
    • as of March 3, 2015 for Reddock or Brazeau class members OR ;
    • as of February 24, 2013 for Gallone class members;
  • incompetent or
  • under power of attorney.

You will have to provide proof of authority to confirm your ability to act as the legal representative of the person that you will be representing.

12. Can I submit a claim on behalf of a deceased Class Member? (back to top)

Yes, if you are the legally authorized representative of the deceased Class Member's estate (i.e. the estate executor or administrator). When completing the claim form, you will need to attach any documents you may have that confirm your ability to act as the legal representative of the person. The Administrator may contact you to obtain more information.

13. How do I select my Track Compensation? (back to top)

The Track Selection Form is how you will inform the Administrator which of the three (3) tracks you have chosen.

The Administrator will send you the Track Selection Form within 30 days of the reception of your Claim Form. The Administrator will also give you (or your legal representative) access to a portion of your Correctional Service of Canada file (known as Tier A Disclosure).

You should review your Correctional Service of Canada (the documents disclosed to you) file before you make your choice. If you are represented by a lawyer, your counsel will advise you. If you are not represented by counsel, you will need to choose yourself.

Please return a completed Track Selection Form to the Administrator in writing or electronically within 90 days of the Tier A Disclosure.

If you believe the Tier A Disclosure is not sufficient to make a Track Selection, you may request additional disclosure within 90 days of the Tier A Disclosure being made available to you by sending a written request to the Administrator. Please return a completed Track Selection Form to the Administrator in writing or electronically within 30 days after the reception of the additional disclosure.

If you fail to submit the Track Selection Form within this timeframe, the Administrator will either: (a) deem you have selected TRACK 1, or (b) will discontinue your claim.

Here is a summary of the key elements of each track. TRACK COMPENSATION
Amount TRACK 1 TRACK 2 TRACK 3

Only an equal share of the $28 million lump sum divided among claimants

UP TO $50,000

(claimants will receive at least an equal share of the $28 million lump sum).

MORE THAN $50,000. NO LIMIT to your claim. (claimants will receive at least an equal share of the $28 million lump sum).

Documents

Claim Form
+
Track Selection Form

Claim Form
+
Track Selection Form
+
Evidence and written arguments on the psychological or physical harm caused by Administrative Segregation.

Claim Form
+
Track Selection Form
+
Evidence and written arguments on the psychological or physical harm caused by Administrative Segregation.

Process

NO Court hearing.
NO medical expert.

A Medical/Manager Expert will review your evidence and recommend an award for approval by the Court.

Court hearing at which the judge will review your evidence and any evidence that Canada presents. The judge will then determine the amount of your award, if any.

Fees

NO additional legal fee

Legal fee of UP TO 15% on the additional money obtained, reasonable disbursements and levy to the Fonds d’aide aux actions collectives or the Class Proceeding Fund. But NO legal fee on the amount equivalent to the equal share of the $28 million.

ANY legal fee negotiated between you and your representative on the additional money obtained, reasonable disbursements and levy to the Fonds d’aide aux actions collectives or the Class Proceeding Fund. These fees will need to be approved by the Courts. But NO legal fee on the amount equivalent to the equal share of the $28 million.

14. Do I need to send original documents to support my claim? (back to top)

If you are claiming under TRACK 1, you do not need to send original documents to support your claim. However, you should submit the Track Selection Form confirming that you are submitting a claim under TRACK 1.

If you are claiming under TRACK 2 or TRACK 3, you will have to submit evidence and written arguments on the psychological or physical harm caused by Administrative Segregation along with the Track Selection Form. Please note that if you do not make your track selection within the deadline, you will be deemed to have selected TRACK 1.

15. How will my compensation be calculated? (back to top)

TRACK 1 :

If you are eligible, your compensation will be calculated by dividing the lump sum by the number of eligible claimants at the end of the Claims period.

TRACK 2 :

For all Track 2 claims, the Administrator will have appointed a team of Experts to  assess the level of pain/suffering experienced in administrative  segregation (per Protocol 6.1(b)). Where a Claimant elects to proceed in Track 2, they shall be deemed to have released Canada from all claims arising from their placement(s) in Administrative Segregation save for the claims as set out in the damages grid set out below (“Damages Grid”) :

TRACK 2 CRITERIA FOR AWARD AWARD
16-29 consecutive days in Administrative Segregation Up to $5,000
30-44 consecutive days in Administrative Segregation Up to $7,500
45-80 consecutive days in Administrative Segregation Up to $10,000
81-100 consecutive days in Administrative Segregation Up to $15,000
More than 100 consecutive days in Administrative Segregation Up to $20,000
Additional damages if Serious Mental Illness (SMI) Eligible, as defined in Brazeau:
If Manager/Expert determines that level of harm is low Up to $5,000
If Manager/Expert determines that level of harm is medium Up to $7,500
If Manager/Expert determines that level of harm is high Up to $10,000
Additional damages for any one or more of: Post-traumatic stress disorder, Severe Clinical Depression, Self-injurious behavior, substantial degradation in Axis I Disorder (excluding substance use disorders), or substantial degradation of Borderline Personality Disorder (“BPD”):
If Manager/Expert determines that level of harm is low Up to $10,000
If Manager/Expert determines that level of harm is medium Up to $15,000
If Manager/Expert determines that level of harm is high Up to $20,000

TRACK 3:

Your compensation in TRACK 3 will be determined by the judges and will not be capped. This might depend on factors such as: how much you suffered, how long you stayed in segregation, the effect of segregation after your placement, etc.

16. When will I get the money? (back to top)

The Claims Administrator shall pay the Claimant’s share of the money awarded under TRACK 1 within sixty (60) days after it has determined all timely eligible Claims Forms (that is not before the Claim Period ends on September 7, 2022).

Money awarded under TRACK 2 or TRACK 3 will be paid after your claim has been completely reviewed and decided upon. If you chose one of these tracks, you will be paid later than those who have selected TRACK 1.

17. How will I receive my money? (back to top)

The Claims Administrator shall pay any monies owing to a Class Member who is incarcerated in a federal correctional institution to their prisoner account, unless the Class Member directs otherwise.

The Claims Administrator will issue payment by cheque for Class members who are not incarcerated.

18. Do I have a lawyer in the case? (back to top)

Yes. In this class action, the Court has appointed the following law firms to serve as Class Counsel:

  • Koskie Minsky LLP in the Brazeau class action;
  • McCarthy Tétrault LLP and Koskie Minsky LLP in the Reddock class action; and
  • Trudel Johnston & Lespérance in the Gallone class action.

Class Counsel will continue to represent you on your claim, unless you choose to represent yourself or you want to use a different lawyer. You DO NOT need to get a new lawyer to represent you.

Class Counsel have already been paid for the work accomplished to obtain the lump sum, so you will not be responsible for lawyers' fees if you choose to claim under Track 1. If you choose to claim under Track 2 or Track 3, Class Counsel or the representative of your choice will only get paid additional fees if your claim is approved, and the Court will continue to monitor any legal fees that you may have to pay Class Counsel.

19. How will the Lawyers be paid? (back to top)

If you select TRACK 1, you will have no additional legal fees to pay. If you choose to be represented by a lawyer other than Class Counsel, you will be responsible for paying that lawyer’s fees.

If you select TRACK 2, you will have to pay a legal fee of UP TO 15% of the additional money obtained, reasonable disbursements and levy to the Fonds d’aide aux actions collectives or the Class Proceedings Fund. But there will be NO legal fee on the share of the $28 million that you receive (TRACK 1 Compensation).

If you select TRACK 3, you will have to pay ANY legal fee negotiated between you and your lawyer on the additional money obtained, reasonable disbursements and levy to the Fonds d’aide aux actions collectives or the Class Proceeding Fund. These fees will need to be approved by the Courts. But there will be NO legal fee on the share of the $28 million you receive (TRACK 1 Compensation).

20. What is the Fonds d’aide aux actions collectives or the Class Proceeding Fund and why do I have to pay a levy? (back to top)

The Class Proceedings Fund provides financial support to approved class action plaintiffs for legal disbursements and it indemnifies plaintiffs for costs that may be awarded against them in funded proceedings.

This support enables individuals to use the law to improve their lives and the lives of many others. Without it, potential class action plaintiffs could be discouraged from pursuing their claims. This is because the personal benefit to them might be quite small and they would risk exposure to significant costs awards against them if the lawsuit is unsuccessful.

Pursuant to article 1 (3) of the Règlement sur le pourcentage prélevé par le Fonds d’aide aux actions collectives F3.2.0.1.1, r. 2, the Fonds d’aide aux actions collectives’ following percentage shall be calculating on the difference between the total award and the aggregated damages award (if eligible), (a) 2% from any liquidated claim less than $2,000; (b) 5% from any liquidated claim exceeding $2,000 but less than $5,000; (c) 10% from any liquidated claim exceeding $5,000.

21. What is Administrative Segregation? (back to top)

“Administrative Segregation” means a placement in segregation pursuant to sections 31 to 37 of the Corrections and Conditional Release Act, S.C. 1992, c. 20.

Click here, to read on the full definition of sections 31 to 37 of the Corrections and Conditional Release Act, S.C. 1992, c. 20.

22. How do I know how many days I have been placed in Administrative Segregation? (back to top)

Canada has provided the Administrator and Class Counsel with the following information for each inmate incarcerated in a correctional institution who was placed in administrative segregation during the class periods of Brazeau, Reddock, and Gallone:

a. their name;
b. their Finger Print Section number; and
c. the date of placement and the release date for each placement in administrative segregation together with the corresponding correctional institution(s) where the administrative segregation placement(s) took place.

You can make a claim if all the facts listed in either Option A OR Option B apply to you:

Option A

  • You stayed in Administrative Segregation in a federal penitentiary anywhere in Canada
  • for 16 consecutive days or more
  • ON or AFTER March 3 2011.

OR

Option B

  • You stayed in Administrative Segregation in a federal penitentiary anywhere in Canada
  • For any length of time
  • ON or AFTER July 20 2009
  • AND you were diagnosed by a medical doctor with a mental disorder or a borderline personality disorder prior or during your incarceration AND you suffer(ed) serious impairment as a result of your disorder and reported such to Correctional Service of Canada (CSC). 1

1 Some exceptions may apply.

23. How do I know which Class Action I am a member of? (back to top)

The complete class definitions for Brazeau, Reddock and Gallone are found in the class actions Protocol and excerpted here:

  1. Brazeau:
    1. All offenders in federal custody, who were placed in administrative segregation in a federal institution situated outside Québec on or after February 24, 2013, or who were placed in administrative segregation in a federal institution anywhere in Canada before February 24, 2013, who were diagnosed by a medical doctor with an Axis I Disorder (excluding substance use disorders), or Borderline Personality Disorder, who suffered from their disorder, in a manner described in Appendix A, and reported such during their incarceration, where the diagnosis by a medical doctor occurred either before or during incarceration in a federal institution and the offenders were incarcerated between November 1, 1992 and the present, and were alive as of July 20, 2013.
    2. Appendix A: Significant impairment in judgment (including inability to make decisions; confusion; disorientation); Significant impairment in thinking (including constant preoccupation with thoughts, paranoia; delusions that make the offender a danger to self or others); Significant impairment in mood (including constant depressed mood plus helplessness and hopelessness; agitation; manic mood that interferes with ability to effectively interact with other offenders, staffs or follow correctional plan); Significant impairment in communications that interferes with ability to effectively interact with other offenders, staff or follow correctional plan; Significant impairment due to anxiety (panic attacks; overwhelming anxiety) that interferes with ability to effectively interact with other offenders, staff or follow correctional plan; Other symptoms: hallucinations; delusions; severe obsessional rituals that interferes with ability to effectively interact with other offenders, staff or follow correctional plan; Chronic and severe suicidal ideation resulting in increased risk for suicide attempts; Chronic and severe self-injury; or A GAF score of 50 or less.
  2. Reddock:
    1. All persons, except Excluded Persons, as defined below, who were involuntarily subjected to a period of Prolonged Administrative Segregation, as defined below, at a Federal Institution, as defined below, after November 1, 1992, and were alive as of March 3, 2015 (“the Class”);
    2. Excluded persons are: (i) All offenders incarcerated at a Federal Institution who were diagnosed by a medical doctor with an Axis I Disorder (excluding substance abuse disorders), or Borderline Personality Disorder, who suffered from their disorder in a manner described in Appendix “A”, and reported such during their incarceration, where the diagnosis by a medical doctor occurred either before or during incarceration in a federal institution and the offenders were incarcerated between November 1, 1992 and the present and were alive as of July 20, 2013; and (ii) All persons who were involuntarily subjected to Prolonged Administrative Segregation, as defined below, only at a Federal Institution situated in the Province of Québec after February 24, 2013. Persons who were involuntarily subjected to Prolonged Administrative Segregation at Federal Institutions situated in Québec and another Canadian province, or at a Federal Institution situated in Québec prior to February 24, 2013, are not Excluded Persons.
    3. Defined terms are: (i) “Administrative Segregation” is defined as sections 31 to 37 of the Corrections and Conditional Release Act, S.C. 1992, c. 20; (ii) “Prolonged Administrative Segregation” is defined as the practice of subjecting an inmate to Administrative Segregation for a period of more than fifteen (15) consecutive days; (iii) “Federal Institutions” are defined as the system of Federal correctional facilities across Canada that is administered by the Correctional Service of Canada, a Federal Government body.

The Court applied a presumptive six-year limitation period to Reddock and Brazeau, resulting in class period start dates of: Reddock – on or after March 3, 2011; Brazeau – on or after July 20, 2009.

  1. Gallone:
    1. Class members in prolonged administrative segregation: All persons held in administrative segregation, after February 24, 2013 of more than 15 days, in a federal correctional facility situated in Quebec, including consecutive periods totalizing of more than 15 days separated by periods of less than 24 hours;
    2. Class members with mental health disorders: All persons held in administrative segregation after February 24, 2013 in a federal correctional facility situated in Quebec who were, prior to or during such administrative segregation, diagnosed by a medical doctor either prior to or during such administrative segregation with an Axis I Disorder (excluding Substance Use Disorders), or Borderline Personality Disorder, who suffered from their disorder, in a manner described at Appendix A, and reported such prior to or during their stay in administrative segregation.
    3. Appendix A: Significant impairment in judgment (including inability to make decisions; confusion; disorientation); Significant impairment in thinking (including constant preoccupation with thoughts, paranoia; delusions that make the offender a danger to self or others); Significant impairment in mood (including constant depressed mood plus helplessness and hopelessness; agitation; manic mood that interferes with ability to effectively interact with other offenders, staffs or follow correctional plan); Significant impairment in communications that interferes with ability to effectively interact with other offenders, staff or follow correctional plan; Significant impairment due to anxiety (panic attacks; overwhelming anxiety) that interferes with ability to effectively interact with other offenders, staff or follow correctional plan; Other symptoms: hallucinations; delusions; severe obsessional rituals that interferes with ability to effectively interact with other offenders, staff or follow correctional plan; Chronic and severe suicidal ideation resulting in increased risk for suicide attempts; Chronic and severe self-injury; or A GAF score of 50 or less.

24. How do I prove that I had been diagnosed with an Axis I Disorder or a Borderline Personality Disorder while incarcerated? (back to top)

Included Axis I Disorders are clinical disorders or other conditions that may be a focus of clinical attention, such as mood disorders, anxiety disorders, dissociative disorders, eating disorders, sleep disorders, impulse-control disorders, and schizophrenia or other psychotic disorders, but not substance abuse disorders.

If you suffered from and were diagnosed with an Axis I disorder or Borderline personality disorder while incarcerated, it should be mentioned in your correctional file. If you chose to undertake Track 2 or 3, you, your lawyer or the court appointed Medical expert will have access to those documents and will be able to look for references to such a diagnosis.

25. Can I Remove Myself from the Class Actions? (Opt-Out/Exclude myself) (back to top)

If you do not want to be part of this Class action, you might still be allowed to opt-out if you were first placed in administrative segregation after December 12, 2016 and have not previously had an opportunity to opt out. Please note that the complete class definitions for Brazeau, Reddock and Gallone are found in the class actions Protocol and above.

What is the Consequence of Opting-Out?

When you opt-out, you lose your right to claim and/or receive any money through the class actions.

Opting-out is a final decision that cannot be undone.

How do I Opt-Out?

In order to properly opt-out, you must prepare and submit a written letter (called an “Opt-Out Election Letter”) to the Claims Administrator.

The Opt-Out Election Letter:

(a) must contain a statement of intention to opt-out of the class actions by you or a person authorized to bind you;
(b) must outline your full name, Finger Print Section (“FPS”), address, telephone number and/or email address (if available);
(c) must include the date and your signature; and
(d) may contain a statement of your reason for opting out.

The Claims Administrator must receive your Opt-Out Election Letter no later than October 7, 2021 (“Opt-Out Deadline”).

Opt-Out Election Letters must be sent to the Claims Administrator.

Important: An Opt-Out Election Letter that does not contain all of the required information or is received after the Opt-Out Deadline will not be valid.