Quebec man trying to sue Netflix, claims company failed to properly notify about price hike


A Quebec man is attempting to sue Netflix on the grounds that the company failed to adequately notify its customers before its increasing its fees in 2016, as per the province’s Consumer Protection Act.

The suit document was filed by Montreal law firm Kugler Kandestin on behalf of Frederic Seigneur and other Quebecers — approximately 1.45 million subscribers in the province.

Seigneur’s lawyer, Pierre Boivin, spoke with the Canadian Press, explaining that Netflix failed to “send a notice which mentions exclusively the rate that the people were paying and the new rate.”

“They also have to mention that the consumer would have 30 days to cancel the contract if they don’t agree with this increase, and that’s not what Netflix sent,” said Boivin. “They did not respect this provision of the Consumer Protection Act.”

The Canadian Press reported that the Quebec suit would extend to any rate hike by Netflix since August 11th, 2014. Boivin said that it appears there’s only been one, in 2016.

The suit seeks reimbursement of the fees paid since the 2016 hike, which Boivin said translates into approximately $14 million CAD.

Lawyers are also seeking an additional $7.5 million in punitive damages.

Since the suit argues Quebec legislation, other Canadian users are not included. Quebec Netflix subscribers also do not have to do anything to take part in the suit.

The action has yet to receive approval by a judge, but Boivin told the Canadian Press that he hopes to have permission to move forward within the next few months.

Earlier this month, Netflix announced that it would be increasing its fees for new subscribers.

MobileSyrup was able to speak with Alexandre Brosseau-Wery, a partner at Kugler Kandestin working on the class action suit to find out if the suit would address the 2017 price hike.

Brosseau-Wery explained that the 2017 hike is not currently part of the class action suit and that it’s an “issue of notices.”

That is to say, if Netflix appropriately informs its customers of the 2017 increase, then there won’t necessarily be an issue in that specific case.

MobileSyrup also reached out to Netflix, and was told that the company does not comment on ongoing litigation.

Correction: This article originally wrote Brosseau-Wery’s first name as Alexandra, not Alexandre. That error has been corrected in the text.

Source: CBC, Kugler Kandestin