Sparkes v. Imperial Tobacco Canada Limited

Buyers of light cigarettes sought class action status in a lawsuit against Imperial Tobacco Canada. The lawsuit alleged that the tobacco company’s advertising attempted to deceive the public into thinking that “light” and “mild” cigarettes were less harmful than regular cigarettes in violation of a consumer protection law. The plaintiffs sought return of the profits made by the tobacco company. The court refused to certify the class action, finding that the plaintiffs failed to state a cause of action because they did not show that they suffered damages as a result of the company’s alleged unfair trade practices. The court also found that the proposed class was too broad, there were too many issues that required proof on an individual level vs. on a group level, and there was not a workable litigation plan.


Sparkes v. Imperial Tobacco Canada Limited, 2008 NLTD 207 (2008).

  • Canada
  • Dec 29, 2008
  • Supreme Court of Newfoundland and Labrador, Trial Division


Plaintiff Victor Todd Sparkes


  • Attorney General of Canada
  • British American Tobacco (Invesments) Limited
  • Imperial Tobacco Canada Limited

Legislation Cited

Class Actions Act of Newfoundland and Labrador

Trade Practices Act of Newfoundland and Labrador

Related Documents

Type of Litigation

Tobacco Control Topics

Substantive Issues

Type of Tobacco Product