There are a variety of laws and regulations that people working in the financial industry must follow when handling the money of clients. Breaking these laws can result in criminal charges and open the offender up to civil lawsuits. If you were the victim of securities fraud in Ohio, securing the services of an experienced lawyer is the first step to recovering damages.
At Meyer Wilson, we have spent the last quarter of a century helping victims of securities fraud recover compensation. Our team of Ohio investment fraud lawyers has the necessary experience to guide you through the process of pursuing compensation. Reach out to us today to schedule a free case consultation with a member of our legal team.
Ohio Securities Fraud Laws
In Ohio, securities fraud is covered under “Ohio Revised Code Title XVII. Corporations Partnerships § 1707.44.”
Some of the prohibited acts covered in this section include:
- Knowingly presenting false or misleading information about any securities to influence their registration or sale.
- Knowingly making, issuing, or publishing false statements about the value of a security or the issuer’s financial condition.
- Knowingly misleading or otherwise influencing a person engaged in any way with the sale of securities with the intent of creating misleading financial statements.
- Knowingly making, recording, or publishing a false report about any securities transaction with the purpose of deceiving others.
These are just some of the acts prohibited under Ohio’s securities fraud state laws. If someone working in the financial industry violates these or any other state or federal securities fraud laws, they could be charged with a crime and open themselves up to civil lawsuits and FINRA arbitration.
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Common Ohio Securities Fraud Schemes
There are many different securities fraud schemes out there, and fraudsters are developing new ways to take advantage of others every day. However, some older scams remain among the most popular today.
While you may not know how a Ponzi scheme works, you have likely heard the term used before. Ponzi schemes are a favorite of fraudsters. The way the scam works is that the fraudster signs up an initial round of investors with promises of big returns. They then sign up further investors and use their money to pay the initial investors.
As earlier investors share the news of how their money has grown, it helps attract more and more investors. The fraudster continues to pay earlier investors with the money coming in from newer investors while skimming a significant amount of money off the top for themselves.
Eventually, the scam reaches a point where there is no longer enough money coming in from new investors to pay the older investors. At this point, the Ponzi scheme collapses, and the fraudster has made a significant profit while the victims suffer substantial losses.
Pump-and-dump schemes involve a fraudster working to artificially inflate the value of a stock in which they have made a substantial investment. They pump up the stock’s value by making direct or indirect recommendations about the stock using false or misleading information to get others to invest.
After enough people have invested – driving up the price of the stock – they will dump their shares for a significant profit, which will cause the stock price to plummet and leave those still invested facing significant financial losses.
Ponzi schemes and pump-and-dump schemes may be some of the most common securities fraud scams in use today, but they are far from the only methods fraudsters employ to take advantage of investors. If you lost money in a securities fraud scam perpetrated by a financial advisor, an experienced investment fraud attorney can help you recover compensation.
Criminal Penalties for Securities Fraud in Ohio
Those charged with securities fraud in Ohio may be ordered to pay restitution to their victims. Furthermore, they will likely be looking at significant jail time and heavy fines. The amount of money involved in the scheme will play a role in determining the exact penalties in the case.
Offenses Involving Less Than $1,000
When the fraud victim(s) lost less than $1,000, the offender will be charged with a fifth-degree felony. This charge can carry an imprisonment term of six months to one year and an additional fine of up to $2,500.
Offenses Involving $1,000 to $7,499.99
When the fraud victim(s) lost between $1,000 and $7,499.99, the offender will be charged with a fourth-degree felony. This charge can carry an imprisonment term of six to 18 months and an additional fine of up to $5,000.
Offenses Involving $7,500 to $37,499.99
When the fraud victim(s) lost between $7,500 and $37,499.99, the offender will be charged with a third-degree felony. This charge can carry an imprisonment term of nine to 36 months and an additional fine of up to $10,000.
Offenses Involving $37,500 to $149,999.99
When the fraud victim(s) lost between $37,500 and $149,999.99, the offender will be charged with a second-degree felony. This charge can carry an imprisonment term of two to eight years and an additional fine of up to $15,000.
Offenses Involving $150,000 or more
When the fraud victim(s) lost $150,000 or more, the offender will be charged with a first-degree felony. This charge can carry an imprisonment term of three to 11 years and an additional fine of up to $20,000. If a repeat offender is charged with this crime, up to an additional 10 years can be added to their prison sentence.
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Civil Penalties for Securities Fraud in Ohio
Beyond criminal charges, a fraudster can also face civil lawsuits from their victims. If you lost money in a securities fraud scheme, you can pursue damages by filing a lawsuit. There is the potential to recover not only the money you lost but also additional compensation to cover any further harm to your life that resulted from the financial loss.
At Meyer Wilson, our award-winning team of securities fraud lawyers has helped our clients recover $350+ million in damages. We can help you pursue compensation against both the party that defrauded you and the financial institution that employs them.
We will help you identify all potentially liable parties in your case to help ensure you recover the full amount to which you are entitled.
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Get Help From an Experienced Investment Fraud Attorney Serving Ohio Today
After losing money as a victim of securities fraud, it’s important not to delay when hiring legal representation. The earlier a lawyer can get to work on your case, the easier it will be for them to build a strong claim and recover the money you need. The experienced legal team at Meyer Wilson will begin taking action on your behalf immediately.
Contact us through our website or by giving us a call and schedule a free case review with a member of our team today.
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