Disability/Personal Injury

Cancelled school trips lead to class action lawsuit

A headshot of Ottawa disability lawyer Sivan Tumarkin next to the logos for Samfiru Tumarkin LLP and Ottawa radio station Newstalk 580 CFRA.

Canadian families with trips planned were put in a difficult situation when trips were canceled due to the pandemic. Claims made to travel insurance companies were stalled or outright denied from company’s like that of Old Republic. As a result, a class-action was launched against Old Republic in order to finally ensure the families involved are compensated.

Sivan Tumarkin, disability lawyer at Samfiru Tumarkin LLP, who represents the families spoke with Bill Carroll on CFRA to discuss the ongoing suit.

What They Discussed

  • How many people are involved in the class-action suit? Two class-actions were launched; one against Old Republic and another against Arch Insurance. There are approximately 2000 families involved.
  • Is the company that trips were booked with also being sued? No, as there are valid insurance policies in place and collected premiums for canceled trips.
  • Do you have to file a suit against the company you booked a trip in order for them to sue the insurance company? Filing a suit against the insurance company itself is a better route.
  • Did every student involved have an insurance policy with Old Republic or Arch? Yes, Explorica told the students to purchase trip cancellation insurance.
  • Are the insurance companies stalling for time? It’s possible as a concern is the two-year limitation period on beginning a claim.
  • Is this part of an insurance company’s business plan? The insurance company definitely does not want to pay out, stalling could lead to people becoming frustrated and giving up.
  • Is there still time for others to join this class-action suit? In Canada, if you are part of that defined class is automatically within the class unless they choose to opt-out.
  • Is the hope of launching this class-action that every family will be fully reimbursed? Unlike other class-actions, this suit has defined damages as each family knows what they are owed.
  • In the best-case scenario, how long will this suit take? Within a matter of weeks as if they do not there will also be punitive damages.

Are you owed refunds reimbursement through Old Republic or Arch Insurance?

Learn more about our class actions and how to sign up as a class member.

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