Kenneth Rijock

Kenneth Rijock

Monday, November 7, 2016

NORTHLAND WEALTH MANAGEMENT AND ITS DECEPTIVELY SIMILAR NAME



When I began my research into the background of Northland Wealth Management, of Markham, Ontario, for an article about the company's dominant role in the $450m Cayman Gang of Four scandal*, I noticed that it had the same exact business name as a prominent US company, also called Northland Wealth Management, but with significant differences; the American company predated the Ontario one by a decade, is qualified to conduct business in in several states, is a much larger entity, and is totally trusted by its clients, due to its record of customer service.

In law school we were taught to always conduct a due diligence search on any name that you contemplate using, lest you end up choosing the precise name of another, older, and more established firm, which may choose to bring an civil suit against you, for taking their name & reputation. In the world of financial crime, we call that deceptively similar. It confuses the investing public, and gives those who see the name a false sense of security. Who would make such a elementary mistake, regarding the name, or was it not a mistake at all ?


Any Internet search produces web entries for both companies, side by side, making it appear to be one extremely large corporation, when it is truly two separate entities. So I pose the question to you: did someone drop the ball, and fail to make even the most rudimentary name search, or was the confusing similarity of names intentional ?
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*Lawrence Heath et al vs. Northland Wealth Management, Inc., Ontario Superior Court.

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