Manulife Financial Corporation

Class Action/
Nov 26, 2018
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In July 2009, our firm, along with Siskinds LLP, filed a class action in Ontario against Manulife Financial Corporation ("Manulife") and certain of its current and former officers and directors. Our firm is also counsel to the class in a parallel action that was filed in Quebec.  In these class actions, it is alleged, among other things, that the defendants negligently made misrepresentations relating to Manulife’s risk management practices and policies.  The Manulife Financial Corporation class actions are brought on behalf of all persons and entities who acquired Manulife securities from April 1, 2004 to February 12, 2009 (the "class period").

Settlement Approved

The Courts of Ontario and Quebec have now approved the settlement and fees. Reasons for the decisions can be found here

Further information regarding the implementation of the settlement will be available at

Announcement of Settlement

On January 31, 2017, we announced that this matter has been settled for $69 million CAD.  Please see our press release here ( or here:  ( ) in French.

This settlement must be approved by the courts of Ontario and Quebec before becoming final.  Official notices of settlement with further details regarding the settlement approval process will follow, once approved by the courts.

Authorization by the Superior Court for the District of Quebec

On July 8, 2011, the action filed in Quebec against Manulife was authorized to proceed as a class action. This action is brought on behalf of all residents of Quebec (except those persons who are excluded from the Quebec class by virtue of the Code of Civil Procedure), who, during the class period, purchased or otherwise acquired shares or other securities of Manulife, directly or indirectly, through a mutual fund or otherwise, and who continued to hold those shares as of February 12, 2009.

Certification under the Class Proceedings Act and Leave under the Ontario Securities Act

On July 25, 2013, Justice Belobaba of the Ontario Superior Court of Justice certified the Ontario action as a class proceeding, and appointed the Ironworkers Ontario Pension Fund and Leonard Schwartz as Representative Plaintiffs.  The Ontario action has been certified on behalf of all persons and entities, wherever they may reside, who acquired MFC common shares over the TSX, or under a prospectus filed with a Canadian Securities regulator at any time from April 1, 2004 to February 12, 2009, and continued to hold the common shares until February 12, 2009; but excluding (1) the Defendants, members of the immediate families of the Individual Defendants, any officers or directors of MFC, and (2) all persons who do not opt out of the proposed class action pending in the Quebec Superior Court and styled Comité Syndical National de Retraite Bâtirente Inc. v Société Financière Manuvie (Court File No.:  200-06-000117-096).  Justice Belobaba also granted leave to the plaintiffs in the Ontario action to commence an action under the secondary market liability provisions of the Ontario Securities Act and the analogous provisions of the securities legislation of each other Canadian jurisdiction.

The Defendants' motion for leave to appeal from Justice Belobaba's order was dismissed on March 3, 2014 and discoveries are underway. 

N.B. The allegations against Manulife have not yet been proven in Court nor are they admitted in the settlement.

For further information and contact information, please visit Siskinds' website ( or email


The Plaintiffs are being represented in Ontario by Michael Wright and Amanda Darrach.