Simply losing money (or in some cases not making a reasonable return) is not enough to have a viable claim. You must also have facts which show that your brokerage firm (or its stockbroker and/or its manager) either violated state or federal securities laws, committed investment fraud, was negligent or otherwise failed to comply with the regulations of industry watchdogs such as the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) or the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA). The following is just a partial list of facts which may indicate investment fraud or investment negligence. This list is offered for informational purposes and is not intended to be a substitute for the professional judgment of an experienced securities attorney.
- Did your financial advisor misrepresent the risks or features of the investment (or strategy) at issue? (Investment Fraud).
- Did your financial advisor fail to explain the risks or features of the investment (or strategy) at issue? (Investment Negligence/Investment Fraud).
- Did your financial advisor recommend investments that were not suitable for you because they were outside your risk tolerance (too risky/speculative), too illiquid (you needed the money sooner than the investment permits) or too complex (outside your investment experience and product knowledge)? (Investment Fraud or Investment Negligence)
- Did your financial advisor make recommendations that resulted in the over-concentration of your account in securities from the same sector or which have the same risks (e.g. oil and gas related securities)? (Negligence).
- Did your financial advisor recommend that you hold positions that have since gone down in value? (Unsuitable Investment Strategy)
- Did your financial advisor fail to recommend hedging strategies to limit the risks of your investments? (Investment Fraud or Investment Negligence).
- Did your financial advisor make trades in your account without prior approval? (Unauthorized trades) (Securities Fraud).
- Did your financial advisor borrow money from you?
- Did your financial advisor over-trade your account in order to earn more commissions? (Churning) (Securities Fraud).
- Did your financial advisor charge management fees even though your account was inactive? (Reverse Churning).
- Did your financial advisor charge management fees on substantial cash positions or on securities you indicated that you wanted to hold for the long term, such as mutual funds, bonds or stock in the company you work for? (Reverse Churning).
- Did your financial advisor sell you high commission products such as variable annuities, private placements, non-traded REITs or high-yield bonds?
- Did your account underperform the market while your financial advisor made a considerable amount in commissions? (Securities Fraud).
If you have significant losses and any of the above potential abuses happened to you, contact the attorneys at PCJ Law for a free, informative consultation at 901-820-4433.