The Supreme Court of British Columbia has ruled that a former insurance rep is entitled to share in ongoing commissions being paid to her former firm, Campbell, Chevalier, Sterling, Silver Financial Services Inc., by Sun Life Financial Distributors (Canada) Inc. under an advisor agreement between the companies.
According to the court’s decision, Lutgarda Chevalier formed a multi-advisor corporation (MAC) with three other insurance reps, Linda Campbell, Michael Sterling and Richard Silver in 2005. In 2008, Chevalier left the firm, selling her shares in the company and dividing up the firm’s clients. However, she ended suing her former partners, claiming that she was not receiving her share of commissions being paid out by Sun Life.
Advisor agreements with Sun Life call for the firm to payout a large portion (about 75%) of commissions earned after the advisor agreement is terminated., the decision explains. Those payouts continue for 10 years.
In Chevalier’s case, the payouts started in 2011 and are slated to continue through the end of 2020. “As the remaining shareholders of Sterling, Silver Financial Services Inc., a now moribund company that exists only to receive these funds, Mr. Sterling and Mr. Silver are the only beneficiaries of this stream of … payments,” the decision says.
“When Ms. Chevalier left the company with a portion of the clientele, the evidence established that she would be leaving behind with the company the accumulated [commissions] associated with the clientele that she was taking with her. In these circumstances … it is natural that the share purchase agreement called for a payment to Ms. Chevalier in addition to the transfer of clientele,” the court said.
As a result, the court ruled that Chevalier is entitled to more than $150,000 in damages for the payments she missed since they began in 2011. It ordered that her former firm pay her a share of the ongoing commission payouts (a little over $2,000 a month) beginning in December and ending in Aug. 2018.