Toronto Securities Litigation Lawyer Protecting the Rights of Investors During Securities-Related Court Disputes
If you are an investor or a shareholder in a financial company that may have acted against the law or engaged in wrongdoing, there may be legal remedies that you can pursue. Oftentimes, investors may choose to initiate a class action to recoup damages. This requires a seasoned securities litigation lawyer with extensive knowledge of the financial aspects of this type of action. At Financial Litigation, our legal team has helped protect the interests of many investors and shareholders whose finances were jeopardized by the company they trusted their investments to. Here are a few important things you should know about securities litigation.
How Do Securities Litigations Work in Ontario?
Most securities litigations in Canadian provinces (except for Quebec) consist of investor class actions to seek damages compensation for misrepresentations in the issuer’s disclosures. Investors may complain about misrepresentations involving primary market claims or secondary market claims.
Securities class action proceedings must be certified by the court before moving ahead, and are usually filed at a provincial level, with Ontario being one of the provinces that see the highest number of securities class actions filed. A securities litigation lawyer is indispensable to initiate any action in this arena, as they are complex by nature and require a seasoned litigator with extensive financial knowledge.
What Types of Securities Claims Are Available to Investors?
Ontario allows for investors to initiate a lawsuit under common law claims and/or statutory claims. In simple terms, claims under common law require investors to prove that the company was negligent and/or engaged in fraudulent misrepresentation, resulting in losses for the investor who relied upon the misrepresentation.
Statutory claims are a bit more encompassing and do not require an investor to prove detrimental reliance. They are based on provincial securities legislation and can be applied to misrepresentation cases involving primary market documents or secondary market continuous disclosure. Other causes such as misrepresentation in takeover bid circulars or damages resulting from insider trading. For a more in-depth understanding of the claims that may be available to you, consulting a securities litigation lawyer is recommended.
How Much Time Does an Investor Have to Initiate a Claim?
Common law claims in Ontario may be subject to the deadlines prescribed in provincial statutes of limitation, which gives a plaintiff two years from the date when he or she discovered or should have reasonably discovered that they had a claim. However, for statutory primary market claims, the deadline for seeking compensation is 180 days from the date when securities were purchased. The deadline for a statutory secondary market action is usually three years from the date when the document or statement containing the misrepresentation was released, or from a failure to make timely disclosures.
What Type of Compensation May Be Available for a Securities Claim?
Most investors affected by misrepresentation or other wrongdoing may be entitled to damages compensation, and some investors who purchased securities from a primary market issuer filing a statutory claim may be able to exercise their right of rescission. Damages for primary market claims are limited to the amount each investor spent purchasing the offering. Secondary market claims are subject to certain liability limits that vary depending on the type of defendant for that claim.
Common law claims may allow the plaintiff to recover damages compensation and/or use their right of rescission. It is important to mention that damages awarded in this instance are meant to help the plaintiff recover losses resulting from reliance on the misrepresentation rather than to place the plaintiff in a position they would have been if the misrepresentation had not occurred.
As you can see, securities litigation is a complex area that requires a litigation lawyer who has the resources and knowledge to handle an action of this magnitude. At Financial Litigation, our legal team’s in-depth financial knowledge sets us apart and allows us to assist our clients in confidently protecting their rights as investors in the face of any wrongdoing. If you would like to discuss your case or learn your options, call our Toronto office at 416-769-4107.