BMO/Simplii Class Action
This action is on behalf of all current or former Bank of Montreal (“BMO”) and CIBC (operating as “Simplii”) customers whose personal information was exposed to appropriation by hackers as a result of a security breach disclosed on May 28, 2018.
The action is based on a cybersecurity privacy breach affecting sensitive personal financial information of tens of thousands of customers of BMO and Simplii. It claims damages and relief on behalf of all BMO and Simplii customers affected by the privacy breaches.
The settlements with BMO and Simplii have been approved by the courts. The settlement funds will be distributed within the next 3-6 months. Please sign up for e-mail updates for further information.
For more information on the case, please contact Jonathan Schachter.
- June 2, 2021: The Quebec Superior Court of Justice approved the settlement with BMO. Please see reasons attached (in French). Please check this site for updates on timing of distribution of settlement funds, which is estimated to take place in 3-6 months.
- April 20, 2021: The Ontario Superior Court of Justice approved the settlements with BMO and CIBC. The Court’s reasons can be found here and here.
The proposed settlement with BMO is also subject to the approval of the Quebec Superior Court, which will be heard on May 31, 2021.
Please check this page for updates on timing of distribution of the settlement funds, which is estimated to take place within approximately six months. You will hear directly from the bank about payments.
- February 17, 2021: The February 2021 hearings to consider the BMO and CIBC settlements were adjourned (postponed) to new dates. The new Ontario hearing date is April 6, 2021. The new Quebec hearing date (in respect of BMO Quebec class members) is May 31, 2021. The deadline to opt-out of these settlements has passed.
- December 15, 2020: The plaintiffs have entered into settlements with BMO and CIBC/Simplii. The Ontario Court will be asked to approve the settlements on February 19, 2021.
- The BMO notice of settlement approval hearing is available here. BMO class members who wish to opt out of the settlement must complete and return an opt-out form by no later than February 10, 2021. BMO Distribution Protocol is available here.
- The CIBC/Simplii notice of settlement approval hearing is available here. Simplii class members who wish to opt out of the settlement must complete and return an opt-out form by no later than February 15, 2021.
- December 4, 2019: The plaintiffs’ certification motion currently scheduled for December 5-6, 2019 has been adjourned. It will be rescheduled at a later date.
- October 11, 2019: The plaintiffs’ certification motion has been rescheduled to be heard December 5-6, 2019 in Ottawa. Further details can be found at http://www.ontariocourtdates.ca/ at 4:30 pm the day before the commencement of the hearing. If you have any questions about the certification motion, please contact class counsel for details.
- April 3, 2019: The Ontario Superior Court of Justice is scheduled to hear the plaintiffs’ motion for certification of these actions on October 24-25, 2019. The motion will be heard in Ottawa, likely commencing at 10 am. Further details can be found at http://www.ontariocourtdates.ca/ at 4:30 pm the day before the commencement of the hearing. If you have any questions about the certification motion, please contact class counsel for details.
- June 8, 2018: The BMO statement of claim was issued.
- June 8, 2018: The CIBC/Simplii statement of claim was issued.
- BMO Quebec Superior Court of Justice Decision (FR)
- BMO Reasons for Decision on Settlement Approval and Distribution Protocol
- Simplii/CIBC Reasons for Decision on Settlement Approval and Distribution Protocol
- BMO Order – Notice Approval and Consent Certification
- BMO Notice of Settlement Approval Hearing and Opt-Out (Long-Form, Short-Form)
- BMO Opt-Out Form
- BMO Distribution Protocol
- BMO Settlement Agreement
- Simplii/CIBC Order – Certification for Settlement Purposes and Notice Approval
- Simplii/CIBC Notice of Settlement Approval Hearing and Opt-Out
- Simplii/CIBC Opt-Out Form
- Simplii/CIBC Settlement Agreement
- BMO Statement of Claim (issued June 8, 2018)
- CIBC/Simplii Statement of Claim (issued June 8, 2018)
Frequently Asked Questions
A class action is a special form of lawsuit in which one plaintiff brings a claim against one or more defendants based on allegations which are common to a group, or class, of people. In order for the action to become a class action, it must proceed through a stage known as “certification”.
A statement of claim is issued on behalf of a “representative plaintiff”. The representative plaintiff’s role is to work with class counsel to bring the action forward and to represent the class members in court.
In order for an action to proceed on behalf of the entire class, a judge must decide (among other things) whether the members of the proposed class have common issues, and whether a class action is the preferred way to resolve the issues. The process to decide these issues is known as the “certification motion”. If the judge is satisfied that the case meets all of the requirements for certification, he or she will issue an order which certifies the action as a class action.
No. If the lawsuit is certified, and you are included in the class as defined, you are automatically included in the lawsuit.
No. We will work primarily with the class representative.
Those who do not wish to remain in the class will be given the option to opt-out by sending an opt-out form at the appropriate time to us.
Certification as a class action will enable us to prove the facts in a single lawsuit rather than in numerous individual lawsuits. This has obvious benefits to the class members and to the courts.
There is no timeframe. We will move the case forward diligently but it can take a considerable period of time to reach trial.
Many class actions settle and thereby remove the need for a trial. However, we cannot predict with any certainty whether or not there will be a settlement in a given action.
The chances of “winning” can never be accurately predicted.
Class action lawsuits are typically brought on a contingency fee basis. This means that the lawyers will only be paid if the action is successful at trial or results in a settlement in favour of the plaintiffs. Legal fees would then be paid out of the settlement or judgment proceeds as approved by a judge.
Disbursements (i.e. out-of-pocket expenses, including expert reports) may be dealt with in one of two ways.
Most commonly, the lawyers will absorb the cost of disbursements. The lawyers may seek funding assistance from the Class Proceeding Fund, which may provide funding for disbursements if granted.
In some cases, disbursements may be funded by the class members, including the class representative. This typically occurs in smaller class actions brought on behalf of an organization or network of individuals where each member of the class is easily identifiable and known to the representative plaintiff. If the class action is successful, amounts advanced for disbursements are re-paid from the proceeds of any judgment or settlement to class members (and others).
Only the class representative may be liable for costs of the common issues portion of the action if it is unsuccessful.
A “payout” or an award for damages is never certain.
The action may settle or it may proceed to trial, at which time a judge will determine the amount of damages, if any, to which the class members are entitled to. Regardless, the amount of “payout” cannot be predicted, and we cannot predict when the action may settle or when the trial will conclude.
If the lawsuit is certified as a class action, you will receive a formal notice from the court explaining the nature of the case and providing you with the opportunity to opt out if you wish. General information about the lawsuit will be posted on Sotos LLP’s website at https://www.sotosclassactions.com.
We ask that you keep a copy of any documents, correspondences, records, invoices, receipts, etc. that you feel might be relevant to your individual claim in the class action. If there is a “payout,” this documentation may be required in order to support your claim for compensation.
It is not required that you send any documents to us at this time.
Join this Class Action
BMO/SIMPLII CLASS ACTION
June 2, 2021: The settlements with BMO and Simplii have received court approval. Please check this page for updates on timing of distribution of settlement funds, which is estimated to take place in 3-6 months. You will hear directly from BMO or CIBC/Simplii if you are a class member.