Electrolytic and Film Capacitors Class Actions

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Electrolytic and Film Capacitors Class Actions

The content of this page has not been approved by the Court nor does it constitute legal advice. It is for the purpose of providing general information only.

Important Update

Settlements have been reached in the Electrolytic and Film Capacitors Proceedings.

In the Electrolytic Capacitors Proceeding, a settlement of CAD $2,900,000 has been reached with the defendants Tokin Corporation and Tokin America Inc.

In the Film Capacitors Proceeding, respective settlements of CAD $460,000 and USD $190,000 have been reached with Okaya Electric Industries Co., Ltd. and Okaya Electric America, Inc., and with Nitsuko Electronics Corporation.

The Electrolytic and Film Capacitors Proceedings remain ongoing against the remaining non-settling defendants.  

As the lawsuit is still ongoing and there could be other settlements or a judgment against the other defendants, and potentially more money for Class Members, the settlement funds (less Court approved fees and expenses) will be held in respective interest-bearing trust accounts for the benefit of Class Members. If there are further recoveries, they will be added to the present settlement amounts and an efficient distribution will be made at an appropriate time. That plan must be approved by the Courts before it takes effect.

The settlements remain subject to court approval at the dates and times outlined below.

If you do not oppose the settlements, and do not wish to opt-out of the Electrolytic and/or Film Capacitors Proceedings, you do not need to do anything else at this time.

If you wish to comment or object to the settlements, you must deliver a written submission to one of the lawyers listed below by October 24, 2018.

Class Members who wish to opt-out of either the Electrolytic Capacitors Proceeding and/or the Film Capacitors Proceeding must do so by completing an opt-out form for each respective proceeding by October 24, 2018. Further information on opting-out as well as copies of the opt-out forms can be found below.

What are Capacitors?

Electrolytic and Film Capacitors are one of the fundamental components found in electrical circuits and all electronic devices that are used today. Electrolytic and Film Capacitors are used in an electric circuit to store an electrical charge and they are incorporated into a wide range of electronic devices, including computers, smartphones, stereo equipment and other household and business electronics.

Summary of the Proceedings

Electrolytic Capacitors Proceeding

On May 22, 2018, Harrison Pensa LLP issued an Amended Fresh as Amended Statement of Claim on behalf of persons and entities in Canada who purchased aluminum and tantalum electrolytic capacitors (“Electrolytic Capacitors”) or products containing Electrolytic Capacitors between September 1, 1997 and December 31, 2014, other than all persons and entities in British Columbia and Québec (the “Class Period” or “Class Members”).

The proposed class action alleges that the Defendants and their senior executives participated in illegal and secretive meetings and conspired and/or agreed with each other to fix, maintain, increase and control the price for supply of Electrolytic Capacitors and/or enhance unreasonably the prices of Electrolytic Capacitors and to lessen unduly competition in the sale of Electrolytic Capacitors in Canada.

The action seeks to recover the anticompetitive pricing overcharge that class members paid for Electrolytic Capacitors during the Class Period.

Harrison Pensa LLP is working in concert with Camp Fiorante Matthews Mogerman LLP in British Columbia and Belleau Lapointe s.e.n.c.r.l. in Québec (collectively “Class Counsel”) to prosecute these matters on a national basis.

Film Capacitors Proceeding

On January 12, 2018, Harrison Pensa LLP issued an Amended Amended Statement of Claim on behalf of all persons and entities in Canada who purchased film capacitors including film and aluminum foil capacitors, film and other metal capacitors, layered capacitors and surface-mount capacitors (“Film Capacitors”) or products which contained Film Capacitors between January 1, 2002 and December 31, 2014 (the “Class Period” or “Class Members”).

The proposed class action alleges that the Defendants and their senior executives participated in illegal and secretive meetings and conspired and/or agreed with each other to fix, maintain, increase and control the price for supply of Film Capacitors and/or enhance unreasonably the prices of Film Capacitors and to lessen unduly competition in the sale of Film Capacitors in Canada.

The action seeks to recover the anticompetitive pricing overcharge that class members paid for Film Capacitors during the Class Period.

Harrison Pensa LLP is working in concert with Camp Fiorante Matthews Mogerman LLP in British Columbia and Belleau Lapointe s.e.n.c.r.l. in Québec (collectively “Class Counsel”) to prosecute these matters on a national basis.

Settlements

A settlement was reached in the Electrolytic Capacitors Proceeding with Tokin Corporation and Tokin America Inc. (collectively “Tokin”) on May 30, 2018. In accordance with the settlement agreement, Tokin will pay CND $2,900,000 for the benefit of Class Members. A copy of the settlement agreement can be viewed here.

A settlement agreement was reached in the Film Capacitors Proceeding with Okaya Electric Industries Co., Ltd. and Okaya Electric America, Inc. (collectively “Okaya”) on December 15, 2017. In accordance with the settlement agreement, Okaya will pay CND $460,000 for the benefit of Class Members. A copy of the settlement agreement can be viewed here.

A further settlement was reached in the Film Capacitors Proceeding with Nitsuko Electronics Corporation (“Nitsuko”) on December 15, 2017. In accordance with the settlement agreement, Nitsuko will pay USD $190,000 for the benefit of Class Members. A copy of the settlement agreement can be viewed here.

There will be no distribution of the settlement funds at this time. The settlement funds will be held in respective interest bearing trust accounts for the benefit of Settlement Class Members in the Electrolytic and Film Capacitors Proceedings. The continuing litigation may or may not result in further settlements or judgments. If there are further recoveries, they will be added to the present settlement amounts and an efficient distribution will be made at an appropriate time.

Next Steps

Class Counsel will be seeking the approval of the settlements in the Electrolytic and Film Capacitors Proceedings, respectively. At the Settlement Approval hearings, Class Counsel will be requesting court approval of fees of 25% of the settlement amounts plus disbursements and applicable taxes. If approved, this amount will be paid to the lawyers out of the settlement amounts.

The Settlement Approval hearings have been scheduled for:

  • the Ontario Superior Court of Justice on November 5, 2018 at 10 a.m., at 80 Dundas Street, London, Ontario;
  • the Superior Court of Québec on December 3, 2018 at 9:30 a.m., at 1, rue Notre-Dame Est, Montréal, Québec, and;
  • the Supreme Court of British Columbia on November 30, 2018 at 10am, at 800 Smithe Street, Vancouver, British Columbia.

Settlement Class Members in the Electrolytic and Film Capacitors Proceedings now have a chance to review the settlements and provide any comments or objections. Objections or comments can be sent to one of the lawyers listed below by October 24, 2018. Please do not send objections directly to the court as they cannot process them.

Opting-Out

The period for “opting-out” or excluding yourself from the Electrolytic Capacitors Proceeding and/or the Film Capacitors Proceeding is now underway. You have two options:

  1. Remain in the Class – Do Nothing

If you do nothing, you will be eligible to participate in, and may receive money from, the ongoing Electrolytic and/or Film Capacitor Proceedings, but you will not be able to start or continue your own case regarding the claims at issue. You will also be bound by the terms of any settlement and/or judgment, whether favourable or not, and you may not opt-out of these actions in the future. If the settlements are approved, you will not have another opportunity to opt-out of the Electrolytic and/or Film Capacitor Class Actions in the future.

   2. Exclude Yourself from the Class

If you opt-out, you will not be eligible to participate in, or receive money from, the ongoing Electrolytic and/or Film Capacitor Class Actions, but you will be able to start or continue your own case regarding the claims at issue.

If you wish to opt-out, an opt-out form for each respective proceeding must be completed and provided by mail, courier, fax, or e-mail to RicePoint Administration Inc. or to one of the lawyers listed below by October 24, 2018.  The opt-out form for the Electrolytic Capacitors Proceeding can be found here. The opt-out form for the Film Capacitors Proceeding can be found here.

RicePoint Administration Inc.

            Mail:    PO Box 4454, Toronto Station A
                        25 The Esplanade
                       Toronto, ON M5W 4B1

            Courier: 100 University Avenue, 8th Floor
                            Toronto, ON M5J 2Y1

Who Represents Me?

Settlement Class Members in Canada, excluding British Columbia and Québec are represented by Harrison Pensa LLP:

                        Mail:  Harrison Pensa LLP
                        Attn:  Jonathan J. Foreman
                                   450 Talbot Street, P.O. Box 3237
                                   London, ON N6A 4K3
                        Fax:   1 (519) 667-3362
                        E-mail:

Settlement Class Members in British Columbia are represented by Camp Fiorante Matthews Mogerman LLP:

            Mail:   Camp Fiorante Matthews Mogerman LLP
                         Attn: David G.A. Jones
                         Suite 400, 856 Homer Street
                         Vancouver, BC V6B 2W5
            Fax:     1 (604) 689-7554|
            E-mail:

Settlement Class Members in Québec are represented by Belleau Lapointe s.e.n.c.r.l.:

            Mail:     Belleau Lapointe s.e.n.c.r.l.
                         Attn: Jérémie Longpré
                         306 Place d’Youville, Suite B-10
                         Montréal, QC H2Y 2B6
            Fax:     1 (514) 987-6886
            E-mail:

Case History

The Carriage Order

Pursuant to a Court order dated October 31, 2016, Harrison Pensa LLP was granted carriage of the proposed Electrolytic and Film Capacitors Proceedings and two other class actions were dismissed as abandoned, with prejudice. A copy of the Court’s October 31, 2016 order can be viewed below.

The Discontinuances

The plaintiff has entered into Standstill and Tolling Agreements with NEC Canada Inc., Vishay Intertechnology Inc., Taiyo Yuden Co. Ltd., Taiyo Yuden (USA) Inc. and Taiyo Yuden (USA) Inc. o/a Taiyo Yuden Canada in the Electrolytic Capacitors Proceeding and with Vishay Intertechnology Inc. in the Film Capacitors Proceeding. The plaintiffs believe that these companies are not necessary defendants in the action.

The Standstill and Tolling Agreements protect the position of the Class against any applicable limitation periods while providing for a discontinuance of the litigation as against these defendants for current purposes without prejudice to the potential that they could be added back into the litigation again in the future if it becomes necessary. The purpose of the Standstill and Tolling Agreements is to protect the interests of the Class while streamlining and focusing the litigation in respect of the core allegations which have been advanced.

The Electrolytic Capacitors Proceeding has also been discontinued as against Sanyo North America Corporation as a result of their merger with Panasonic North America Corporation, who remains a named defendant in the action. Panasonic North America Corporation is responsible for any proven liabilities of Sanyo North America Corporation.

The Film Capacitors Proceeding has also been discontinued as against Sanyo Electric Co., Ltd., Sanyo Electronic Device (U.S.A.) Corp. and Sanyo North America Corporation as these defendants did not manufacture film capacitors during the relevant class period.

The motion materials provided to the Court with respect to the discontinuances described above as well as the Court’s Orders and Endorsements can be viewed below.

Certification

The plaintiffs’ certification motion record has been filed by Harrison Pensa LLP in the Electrolytic Capacitors Proceeding. Further information will be posted as this matter proceeds.

This matter has been filed in London, Ontario.

Court Documents

Class Members

Persons who believe that they may be members of the proposed class are encouraged to contact Harrison Pensa LLP for further information. Inquiries should be directed to Kassandra Hallett at 1-800-263-0489 ext. 608 or by e-mail to: