Law firm calls for Arch Cru investors to join group action

The High Court has approved wording for law firm Harcus Sinclair to advertise their group litigation order in the battle against Arch Cru’s former authorised corporate director Capita Financial Managers.

On 1 November, the court approved Harcus Sinclair’s group litigation order on behalf of 550 investors who are seeking a combined £16m compensation over Arch Cru.

The claims will argue that investors lost money as a result of Capita breaching regulations around collective investments.

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The order provides for the advertising of the fact that a GLO has been made. The purpose of advertisement is to make potential claimants aware of group litigation and to give them the opportunity to join the litigation.

The advert says: “Individuals who wish to be added to the register of claims should come forward as soon as possible as delay may prejudice the right of an individual to make a claim.”

The advert adds that potential claimants should be aware that 31st December 2013 is the cut-off date for acceptance of the CF Arch Cru payment scheme, by which CFM Limited, HSBC Bank plc and BNY Mellon Trust and Depositary (UK) Limited have offered a settlement (without admission of liability) to all investors in the CF Arch Cru funds.

It also warned that any investor who accepts a payment from the Arch Cru payment scheme will be required by CFM to sign a contract to not sue them.

The advert added: “Investors who have not accepted the CF Arch Cru payment scheme terms and who may wish to bring a claim should contact the lead solicitors.”

Damon Parker, a partner at Harcus Sinclair, said: “We are very pleased to have succeeded in overcoming the hurdle of persuading the High Court that a GLO is appropriate in this case. It demonstrates that this large scale litigation is now well under way and it will enable proper and efficient case management of the group going forward.”

The group litigation order, filed in the High Court of Justice and seen by FTAdviser, says that CFM has until 13 December to file a defence.

A spokesperson for Capita said: “Any claims made against Capita Financial Managers will be vigorously defended and any such defence will be lodged through the appropriate channels at the relevant time.”

Mr Parker previously told FTAdviser that if the litigation order is successful, this could have implications for advisers.

He said: “No doubt, if we are successful in establishing liability, advisers would point to the judgment and say ‘how the hell were we supposed to know that’.

“But they are not my clients, and whether CFM performed its functions as ACD properly is a different question from whether advisers gave correct advice. If advisers think that Capita is responsible for their losses, it is open to them to take advice from their own lawyers on whether they have claims under the Civil Liability (Contribution) Act 1978.”

Investors can register to join the litigation by clicking here.