It has been a busy few months since February when the Christchurch High Court declined to grant the Southern Response Class Action permission to bring forward the proceedingsas a group.
At the time, the judge, Justice Mander, felt that the way in which the first claim was put forward to the court did not show that the claims of the 46 people in the action had enough in common. Mander’s decision did however leave the door open for new proceedings to be filed. He made the statement that although he was declining the current application, it was “without prejudice to any modified application based on a reformulation of the proposed proceedings which meets the concerns expressed…”
The SRCA filed an amended claim on 27 May 2016 which addresses the concerns of the court. A new hearing date has been set for 19 October 2016 in the Christchurch High Court.
The claim has now been amended such that it alleges all policyholders in this action are a victim of an overarching strategy being maintained by Southern Response which is designed to minimize its fiscal exposure. Southern Response does this through a number of tactics and it is only through the means of a class action that the pattern of misconduct can be easily brought to the Court.
We anticipate that the true nature and scope of Southern Response’s activities can now be laid before the Court, in doing so the case raises immense questions around access to justice. Any citizen can file their own action in the Court but where citizens cannot afford to litigate against a major corporate or the Government, and they band together to share costs, there is no automatic right to enter the courtroom.Tags Southern Response Class Action Hearing Court Date