Private class actions and regulatory enforcement proceedings can each be powerful deterrents to unlawful behaviour. But to what extent, if any, should a successful Ontario Securities Commission (OSC) enforcement proceeding trump the right of investors to sue the offenders for damages in a civil court?
In late January, Ontario's Divisional Court addressed the issues with its decision in Fischer v. IG Investment Management Inc., a ruling that goes a long way to consolidating the role of class actions as a meaningful form of protection for investors. It also has repercussions for virtually any class action that follows on a regulatory enforcement proceeding in which damages have been recovered for those who sustained losses.
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