A fire at a high rise in downtown Windsor sent five people to hospital with smoke inhalation. Nov 12, 2019. (Photo by Paul Pedro)

Class action lawsuit to be filed in Westcourt Place fire

A local law firm has announced the intention to file a suit concerning the Westcourt Place fire and the displacement of tenants.

Strosberg Sasso Sutts LLP, a boutique litigation firm with offices in Windsor and Toronto, said on Thursday it intends to file a class-action suit on behalf of the residential and commercial tenants in the high rise located on Goyeau Street and Chatham Street East. Scores of people were ordered to leave their residences after a fire damaged the building’s electrical system on Tuesday morning, so repairs could be completed. Tenants were given two opportunities on Wednesday and Thursday to come back and collect personal items.

According to the explanation of the suit, posted on the firm’s official website, compensation is being sought for commercial tenants who experienced loss of income or personal injury, and seeks reimbursement of any out-of-pocket expenses. Compensation is also being sought for residents forced to pay out-of-pocket for accommodations, food, and travel; as well as for expenses related to cleaning, repairing or restoring property that may have been damaged.

Potential clients are being asked to keep receipts of all their expenses, as well as keep detailed records of anything that was lost. Those with tenant’s insurance are being asked to follow up with their insurance company.

Also, anyone who suffered personal injury in the fire is asked to visit with their doctor and have all medical information recorded.

The Windsor-Essex County Health Unit ordered a mandatory evacuation of Westcourt Place for at least 72 hours, due to a lack of electrical power, heat and running water. Residents were asked to arrange accommodations with family or friends, and a reception centre was set up at the WFCU Centre for those displaced.

Building management, along with Mayor Drew Dilkens, urged the building’s ownership to get the ball rolling with repairs to the property so people can safely return to their units. Arrangements have since been made with a representative of the ownership firm travelling to Windsor.

It was not immediately clear when the suit would get a court filing. Lawyers Harvey T. Strosberg and Sharon Strosberg are listed as the lawyers of record.