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Business Law & Litigation: FINRA Disputes and Securities Losses

In 2007 the National Association of Securities Dealers (NASD) merged with the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) to create the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA). FINRA conducts arbitration and mediation, regulates broker conduct, conducts enforcement proceedings, handles compliance work, and helps resolve disputes. If you have a brokerage account, or if you are an Investment Representative responsible for a customer account, you most likely have agreed to arbitrate all disputes relating to that account through FINRA.

Examples of misconduct that may give rise to an actionable claim against a broker or brokerage firm are as follows

  • Breach of fiduciary duty
  • Unsuitability, unsuitable investment
  • Excessive trading
  • Over-concentration
  • Lack of supervision
  • Unauthorized training
  • Mutual fund fraud
  • Misrepresentations and omissions
  • Inappropriate asset allocation

If you are retired or elderly and have recently sustained substantial losses in the stock market you may have a FINRA claim based on the unsuitability of your holdings and over-concentration in equities, Structured Products, or other higher risk investment. FINRA, in recent notices to brokerage firms, has advised that an investor’s age and life stage are critical components of an investor’s profile and firms cannot meet their regulatory obligations without considering those factors.

Mere eligibility to make an investment is not enough to establish the suitability of the investment.

FINRA has also expressed concern regarding the suitability of recommendations to and communications aimed at older investors.

If you are an Investment Representative of Registered Investment Advisor who has been accused of misconduct, you may call on us for professional assistance in defending you.

If you believe that your broker has acted improperly or fraudulently towards you, you may contact us for professional assistance in evaluating and prosecuting a claim.

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Helmer, Conley & Kasselman, P.A.

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