How Long Does FINRA Arbitration Take?
An arbitration before FINRA is less formal than a trial in a court of law and usually results in a speedier decision. In general, FINRA arbitration takes about 12 to 18 months to resolve after the Statement of Claim has been filed.
Common Claims Against Brokers and Financial Advisors
Our FINRA lawyer in Columbia, MD represent clients in all types of matters involving broker misconduct, including allegations of:
Breach of Fiduciary Duty: Breach of fiduciary duty claims arise when a broker or registered investment advisor violates a client’s trust and confidence. Financial advisors have a duty to put their clients’ best interests before their own financial interests. If your broker has violated this duty, our FINRA lawyer in Columbia, MD may be able to help you recover compensation for your losses.
Negligence: If your broker or financial advisor failed to comply with industry standards or failed to act how a reasonably prudent investment advisor would have acted under similar circumstances, our FINRA lawyer in Columbia, MD may be able to help you file a negligence claim.
Misrepresentations, Omissions and Failure to Disclose Risk: Misrepresentation claims often involve financial advisors who misrepresent or fail to properly describe the risks associated with a particular investment option. For example, if your broker recommends that you invest in stock options or other derivative products without first informing you that such investments are extremely risky and can result in the loss of 100% of your principal, your broker may be held liable for the losses you suffered.
Churning: Churning occurs when a broker encourages a client to make excessive and unnecessary trades to generate extra commissions or fees.
Unsuitability: A financial advisor has a duty to know a client’s appetite for risk and to only make investment recommendations that are suitable for the level of risk the client is willing to accept. If a financial advisor recommends that a client invest in a stock, bond, mutual fund or other financial product that does not conform to the client’s level of risk tolerance, the client may be able to seek legal recourse through a FINRA arbitration.
High Pressure Sales Tactics: A broker may be held liable for using high-pressure sales tactics if he or she is offering to sell securities to a client by means of an aggressive sales campaign to induce a hasty decision to buy the security. For example, if a broker stresses the urgency of the investment and the need to take immediate action, creating the impression that the client will miss a great investment opportunity if he or she does not act immediately and invest in the securities, the broker may be held liable for any losses the client suffers.
Unauthorized Trading: Unauthorized trading occurs when a financial advisor makes a trade in a client’s account without first obtaining the client’s permission or consent. It is important to note that unauthorized trading can occur in cases involving a discretionary account (an account where the broker has discretion to make trades without first receiving client approval) if the client limited the scope of the broker’s authority and the broker exceeded those limits.
Failure to Supervise: A brokerage firm has an obligation to properly supervise its brokers. You may have a valid claim for damages if you suffered losses because of your brokerage firm’s failure to properly supervise its staff, especially if your broker or financial adviser has a record of prior misconduct or improprieties.
Breach of Contract: When you open an account with a financial services firm, the investment advisor will most likely require you to sign a customer agreement outlining the legal obligations between you and your broker. If your broker violates the terms of this agreement, our FINRA lawyer in Columbia, MD may be able to help you obtain compensation for any damages that occurred as a result of the breach of contract.
If you believe that your broker has engaged in any of the above-described activities and you would like Crepeau Mourges fraud office to evaluate whether you have a claim against your broker or financial adviser, contact us today.