There has been a surge in securities regulation enforcement and litigation cases are on the rise.
The government of British Columbia’s sweeping changes to the Securities Act has expanded enforcement and investigative powers for the British Columbia Securities Commission (BCSC). An emboldened BSCS now claims to have the “strongest collection and enforcement powers in Canada”. To protect your vital interests from these threats, you need counsel with an in-depth understanding of an increasingly fraught regulatory landscape. You need litigators with a record of success at trial and in pre-trial motions. Eyford Partners is that firm.
Our clients look to us for clear, well-balanced advice, and skillful advocacy. Drawing on our experience in leadership positions at regulatory authorities, we move decisively to protect our clients’ interests, ability to operate, and reputations from litigation and regulatory action. If engaged early on, we are often able to protect against a notice of hearing being issued by regulatory authorities, which—regardless of the final verdict—can be devastating to the professional reputations of market participants. We also counsel clients in responding to inquiries from regulatory authorities.
Eyford Partners acts for public companies, directors, officers, brokerage firms, investment advisors, and mutual fund sales professionals in complex securities litigation in the courts and before regulatory bodies. We defend our clients’ interests against allegations of market manipulation, misrepresentation, tipping, insider trading, and other offenses. We have extensive experience representing clients before provincial securities commissions and regulatory bodies, such as the Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada (IIROC) and the Mutual Fund Dealers Association (MFDA).
It is incumbent on market participants to take proactive measures to ensure compliance with evolving requirements. Businesses ranging from start-ups to large, established enterprises look to Eyford Partners for advice on how to navigate this evolving regulatory landscape. To limit their exposure to litigation risks, we help clients adopt best practices.
Skillful Defence Counsel, Informed by Regulatory Experience
Our defence expertise flows from our experience in senior positions at Canadian securities regulators. Patricia Taylor brings six years of experience at the BCSC—where she held the roles of Senior Litigation Counsel and Manager of Litigation—to her work as defence counsel. She understands the priorities and methods of the commission and has built strong relationships with regulators, allowing her to negotiate solutions for clients.
Through the Criminal Investigations Branch, the BCSC has ramped up investigations of offences in the Criminal Code and in section 155 of the Securities Act. Across the country, securities commissions are increasingly referring matters to Crown Counsel for charge assessments; these can lead to criminal prosecutions. Changes to British Columbia’s securities laws will also increase maximum penalties for offenses. Our firm partners with leading criminal lawyers to provide clients with the strongest possible defence.
In high-stakes securities litigation defense, it is essential to act quickly to avoid escalation of the situation. This plays to another of our core strengths—our skill in arbitration and mediation. Our driving goal is to secure the best results for our clients at the earliest possible stage.
The Support of Proven Appellate Counsel
While the BCSC is flexing its expanded powers, appeals of commission decisions are becoming more frequent. There have also been several constitutional challenges to regulatory enforcement tools.
We are known for our expertise in appeals and judicial review. Indeed, we know of no firm with more appeal experience in the province. Our partners Angus Gunn, QC and Ryan Parsons have honed their strategic approach to this highly specialized area of law.
At Eyford Partners, we take a cross-disciplinary approach to tackling complex challenges. Our lawyers work closely together so that their considerable strengths act in concert. This provides our clients with the strategic legal advice their situations require.