On July 4, 2008, amendments to the British Columbia Securities Act came into force, introducing secondary market civil liability to that province. The amendments also give investors the statutory right to commence legal action against reporting issuers, directors, and officers — amongst others — for misrepresentations in documents and public oral statements, regardless of whether reliance had been placed on such misrepresentations. These long-awaited changes, which had been passed as legislation on November 22, 2007, represent a significant departure from the legislative reforms proposed in 2004, but they harmonize British Columbia with other provinces’ secondary market civil liability regimes.
A more detailed discussion of the amendments may be found in our Legal Update. In another article in this issue, we have provided an update of our status report of the implementation of the secondary market civil liability regime across Canada.