Tim Patterson, former senior managing director and head of health-care investing at OMERS Private Equity, has filed suit against the C$105 billion ($85 billion) Ontario Municipal Employees' Retirement System, Toronto, alleging wrongful termination and seeking C$67 million in compensation and damages.
The claim was filed July 2 with the Superior Court of Justice in Toronto.
Howard Levitt, a senior partner at LSCS Law representing Mr. Patterson, confirmed the suit in an email, adding, "firing because he would not agree to a massive reduction in income both for the future and retroactively is contrary to everything its pensioner members and their unions would expect or accept in their own employment."
Mr. Patterson, who was also head of the Toronto office for OMERS Private Equity, left the private equity investment arm of the retirement system at the end of January. That month, Pensions & Investments had obtained an internal memo written by Global Head of OMERS Private Equity Michael Graham saying that Mr. Patterson had "made the personal decision to leave" the firm.
An OMERS spokesman said in an email that "this wrongful dismissal claim is entirely without merit" and that the retirement system "will contest this litigation in the same way it would any action that could potentially adversely impact its members."
The spokesman added: "It is also OMERS responsibility to ensure that compensation plans are consistently applied in accordance with their documented terms rather than allowing for individual interpretations."