CIVIL PROCEDURE - Parties - Representation of - Children or incompetent persons - Litigation guardian or next friend

Law360 Canada (October 31, 2023, 6:17 AM EDT) -- Motion by the defendant Manulife Financial, supported by the defendant Accenture, seeking an order declaring the plaintiff a person under disability and appointing the Office of the Public Guardian and Trustee (PGT) as litigation guardian. The plaintiff ceased attending at work at Accenture and applied for short term disability benefits. The short term disability (STD) plan was established and self-funded by Accenture, but the claims process was managed by Manulife. Manulife itself provided Accenture’s eligible employees with long term disability (LTD) benefits. Manulife reviewed the plaintiff’s application for short term disability benefits and recommended that it be denied, and Accenture did so. The plaintiff then applied to Manulife for long term disability benefits and Manulife denied that claim. The plaintiff was self-represented. Accenture confirmed the plaintiff remained employed by it and was presently on a leave of absence. The defendants attempted to pay the plaintiff his owed STD and LTD benefits, but he refused to accept the payments. He argued that it was a trap, that he was being tricked into receiving severance and ending his employment, and they were tricking him into giving up his litigation. The plaintiff admitted that he could not understand the decisions required of him and could not make them. He had a history of being unable to keep counsel. He also had a mistaken belief about the terms of the defendants’ payments and would not accept what was clearly stated, namely, that accepting the payments did not require a release, did not impact his right to continue his litigation and was not a way to trick him into giving up his rights....
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