How do I make a complaint? What kind of information does the BCSC need?
Please include the following information in your complaint:
- Your name and contact information.
- Information about the company/individual who is the subject of the complaint.
- The timeline of the complaint.
- Whether other regulatory agencies have been contacted and, if so, which ones.
- A narrative of the complaint.
- Any documents or sources relevant to your complaint.
Read more about filing a complaint or contact BCSC Inquiries for assistance with making a complaint.
Can I file a complaint anonymously?
Yes. While the BCSC would like to obtain as much contact information as possible from anyone making a complaint, we will accept anonymous complaints. Please consider, though, that the success of an investigation often depends on locating people with first-hand knowledge of the alleged wrongdoing.
You can use the Submit a Tip form to report your concerns about possible investment scams or visit the File a Complaint section to learn more about filing a complaint with the BCSC.
How can I make a complaint against my dealer or advisor?
Before pursuing action with a regulator, raise your concerns with the person who handles your account.
If you are unable to resolve matters with your advisor, ask the firm for information about its formal complaint process. In most cases, the next step is to write a letter to the firm’s branch manager or compliance officer. The firm should acknowledge receipt of your letter, investigate your complaint, and then inform you of the outcome.
If you are not satisfied with the registered firm’s response then you can complain to an independent dispute resolution service called the Ombudsman for Banking Services and Investment (OBSI). OBSI is independent from registered firms and provides impartial and informal reviews of investment disputes. OBSI’s services are free for you to use, and it can recommend compensation of up to $350,000.
You can complain directly to OBSI if the registered firm does not send you its written decision within 90 days. If the registered firm sends you its written decision within 90 days, then you have 180 days to complain to OBSI.
You can make an online complaint to OBSI here. You may also contact OBSI by telephone or in writing, and if needed, OBSI provides accessibility tools to assist individuals with disabilities. Visit this link for more information about OBSI.
If your firm is a member of the Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada (IIROC) or the Mutual Fund Dealers Association (MFDA), you may also want to raise your complaint with them. A directory of member firms is available on both the IIROC and the MFDA websites.
You can complete a complaint form online or call their information lines for more information and assistance. The links on this page will take you to each organization’s contact information page.
If the registered firm you are dealing with is a portfolio manager, an exempt market dealer, or a scholarship plan dealer, then contact the BCSC through our File a Complaint page or BCSC Inquiries.
If you are concerned that you may be the victim of a fraud or theft committed by your dealer or salesperson, you may wish to contact your local police agency to file a complaint. If you need further assistance, please contact BCSC Inquiries.
What does the BCSC do when it receives a complaint?
The BCSC reviews complaints made against individuals or companies involved in trading securities in BC. The BCSC evaluates the actions of these individuals and companies for possible breaches of provisions of the Securities Act. The BCSC may refer some complaints to other agencies, where appropriate.
Read more about filing complaints in the File a Complaint section.