Financial adviser found personally liable for client's Bridgecorp losses
A financial adviser has been ordered to pay $90,000 in damages after being found personally liable for a client’s losses in Bridgecorp.
District Court Judge Peter Spiller originally ruled Hamilton-based adviser Rodney Hartles had breached both the Fair Trading Act and his duty of care in his advice given to retired pharmacist Ken Gilmour.
Judge Spiller originally ruled Mr Hartles' company Decisionmakers (Waikato) was liable for the payment to Mr Gilmore.
However, Decisionmakers has since been placed into liquidation without paying any of the damages award.
Following an appeal from both parties, High Court judge Mark Woolford not only ruled Mr Hartles, as sole director of Decisionmakers, is personably liable but also hiked the damages award from $72,000 to $90,000.
“Under the Gloken principle, he is the alter ego of the company and should be responsible personally for the statements he made that were held to be misleading,” Justice Woolford said.
Mr Gilmore is not the only Bridgecorp investor to claw back funds by challenging an adviser on the Fair Trading Act.
As this week’s NBR Print edition reveals, a Northland investor was also successful in one case while securing an out of court settlement with the adviser’s employer.