Meyer Wilson has offices in Ohio, California, Michigan, and Louisiana, and represents investors nationwide in securities arbitration and litigation. Some of the common investment misconduct claims we see include breach of fiduciary duty, unsuitability, asset allocation, failure to supervise, negligence, and unauthorized trading.
When choosing an attorney for your investment loss case, consider their success. Many lawyers appear to know what they're talking about, but do not have the results to back it up. Meyer Wilson has helped thousands of clients since 1999, and has recovered more than $350 million on their behalves. Led by industry-renowned trial attorneys, we've also been named among The Best Lawyers in America® by U.S. News.
Every investment adviser has certain fiduciary duties he or she must uphold for their clients, which includes always acting in a client’s best interest, a duty of care, and a duty of loyalty. When this duty is breached, investors may be able to hold the investment adviser liable for the resulting investment losses.
Has your broker used fraud, misconduct, or some other type of manipulation for their own benefit without considering your best interests? This could constitute breach of fiduciary duty and you may have a legal claim to recover your losses.
Many of the cases we do involve misrepresentations or omissions of material facts. When giving investment advice or selling a security, brokers and advisers must be clear, open, and honest - giving you the good information and the potential downside as well. It is considered misconduct and a violation of securities law for a broker or adviser to omit or conceal the truth from their clients.
Some of the major types of investment misconduct are detailed below:
Asset Allocation and Failure to Diversity
The bulk of what comprises a successful portfolio is proper allocation of assets and diversification. If your financial professional did not properly diversify your assets, you may have suffered unnecessary financial losses.
Churning is the practice of excessive trading for the purpose of financial gain. Churning often hurts investors and benefits brokers. Meyer Wilson can help you determine if your broker traded your assets excessively.
Failure to Execute
When an investor makes a request with their investment firm, the firm is required to comply in a timely manner. Failure or refusal to follow an investor’s instructions can result in civil liability.
Failure to Supervise
Investment firms are required to provide diligent supervision over its agents to detect and prevent investment misconduct. If we can show that the firms failed to properly supervise their agent, and you suffered investment losses as a result, the firm can be held liable.
A financial professional has a duty to be honest and act in good faith. This includes providing all the features, costs, and risks of a particular security or investment strategy. If a financial professional lies or otherwise omits important information, you could file a securities fraud claim.
Trading on margin (borrowed money using your investments as collateral to the loan) is a highly risky investment strategy not suitable for most investors. If you were advised to use margin to trade by your financial professional, and you lost money as a result, you could potentially have a claim against him or her.
Investment firms have the duty to act in accordance with the standards of care in the industry. When a firm’s conduct falls short of that, they can be held liable for negligence.
You have heard it said, “don’t put all your eggs in one basket.” When financial professionals do not diversify, it increases the risk of financial losses. If your broker over-concentrated on your investments, you could have a claim.
The hallmark characteristic of a Ponzi scheme is that investors are paid “returns” with the money coming in from new investors rather than from operations or profits. How can you know if you were defrauded by a Ponzi scheme? Meyer Wilson can help uncover fraudulent investment operations that harm investors.
Investors who are sold unregistered securities, such as Private Placements, may be able to take legal action. Private placements are highly risky, illiquid, and lack transparency in value. They are inappropriate for the vast majority of investors.
Even if your broker has your best interests in mind, they must always ask your permission before buying or selling (unless they have written discretionary trading authorization). Trading that is unauthorized can not only be harmful, it could warrant legal action.
Your financial professional must know you as an investor - your goals, risk tolerance, age, experience, etc. They have to recommend investments that are in your best interests as a particular investor, based on what they know.