A National Securities Arbitration & Investment Fraud Law Firm

FacebookTwitterLinkedInJustiaFeed

Articles Tagged with suitability

Published on:

Have-You-Lost-Money-Investing-With-Bennett-Broad-300x225Paul William Murans (CRD #3266607, aka “Peace Murans”) is a registered broker and investment advisor currently employed with Thurston Springer Financial (CRD #8478) of Indianapolis, IN. His previous employers include UBS Financial Services Inc. (CRD #8174) and Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Smith Incorporated (CRD #7691), also of Indianapolis, and UBS Painewebber Inc. (CRD #8174) of Weehawken, NJ. He has been in the industry since 1999.

Murans is the subject of six disclosures, two of which are employment separations. His most recent disclosure was filed on 11/18/2018, carried over from his previous employment with UBS Financial Services. The client claims that from 12/2/2013 through 10/20/2017, Murans misrepresented a “life settlement contract” that was ultimately unsuitable, and unauthorized trading of “structured products.” The client also alleged that she was completely unaware that she was borrowing from her loan account. Murans denies the allegations, and has requested copies of the complaint, as has Thurston Springer Financial, but UBS has not supplied the requested information to verify the complaint. The case was settled for $250,000.

A customer dispute filed on 5/16/2018 is currently listed as “pending.” The customer alleges “Unsuitable investments, unauthorized credit line agreement, unauthorized trades, uninvested funds, lost market opportunity,” and requests damages of $183,000. Murans denies the allegations.

Published on:

Boca-Raton-Financial-Advisor-Robert-Child-Faces-Yet-Another-Customer-Dispute-300x199Erik Patrick Pica (CRD #4829533) is a currently registered broker employed with Joseph Stone Capital L.L.C. (CRD #159744) of New York, NY. His previous employers include Global Arena Capital Corp (CRD #16871, expelled by FINRA on 4/1/2016), First Midwest Securities, Inc. (CRD #21786), Chicago Investment Group, LLC (CRD #11853, expelled by FINRA on 9/14/2010) and Eastbrook Capital Group LLC (CRD #39781, expelled by FINRA on 9/23/2009), all of New York City. He has been in the industry since 2004.

Pica is the subject of seven disclosures, all customer disputes. The first one was filed on 5/10/2018, alleging “unauthorized trade of 6000 shares Rite Aid Corp unauthorized trade of 550 shares Valeant Pharmaceutical.”  The client requests damages of $7,613.65. This case is currently pending.

The next customer dispute was filed on 5/4/2018, with allegations of negligence, over-concentration and suitability.” This client requests damages of $293,000. This case is also currently “pending.”

Published on:

Are-or-Were-Unsuitable-Non-Traded-REITs-in-Your-Portfolio-300x224-300x224Katherine Greer Nishnic (CRD #2499553, a/k/a Katherine Greer Martinson, Katherine Diane Nishnic, Katherine G. Nishnic) is a currently registered broker employed with Centaurus Financial, Inc. (CRD #30833) of Lexington, SC. Her previous employers include J.P. Turner & Company, L.L.C. (CRD #43177), Gunnallen Financial, Inc (CRD #17609) and First Allied Securities, Inc. (CRD #32444), also of Lexington, SC. She has been in the industry since 1994.

Nishnic is the subject of three disclosures, all recent customer disputes. The first was filed on 11/18/2018, alleging that Nishnic made unsuitable recommendations as well as “other allegations” that were not disclosed. The client is asking for damages of $100,000. Nishnic denies the allegations, and indicates that this may be a client’s family creating the dispute. This case is currently “pending.”

The next customer dispute was filed on 8/21/2017, alleging that the products sold to the client while she and her late husband were customers of Nishnic’s at a different brokerage were unsuitable. This client requests damages of $95,000. Nishnic also denies these allegations. The case was ultimately closed without any action.

Published on:

Scott Vincent Kaup (CRD #1002907) is a registered broker and investment advisor currently employed with Summit Brokerage Services, Inc. (CRD #34643) of Stuart, NE. His previous employers include VSR Financial Services, Inc. (CRD #14503), also of Stuart, NE and American General Securities Incorporated (CRD #13626) of Phoenix, AZ. He has been in the business since 1981.

Lawrence-LaBine-Under-Fire-for-Alleged-Unsuitable-Recommendations-and-More-300x200Kaup has two disclosures on his record. The first one, filed on 7/13/2018, alleges “unsuitable investment recommendations, material misrepresentations and omissions, and supervisory due diligence failures.”  The client is requesting damages of $2,600,000.00. No additional information is available.

The second dispute was filed on 4/25/2016. This claim alleges that Kaup, from 3/30/2001 to 6/14/2010, breached his fiduciary duty, violated common law fraud regulations, made unsuitable recommendations for investments and committed negligence. The claim was settled for $173,000. Kaup denied all claims.

Published on:

Back in August, we told you about broker Cindy Lucille Porto Chiellini (CRD #1015592) who had three customer disputes on file in her record. Chiellini is still employed with Centaurus Financial, Inc. (CRD #30833) of Lexington, SC.

Lawrence-LaBine-Under-Fire-for-Alleged-Unsuitable-Recommendations-and-More-300x200Since our last report, four customers have filed additional disputes against Chiellini for various complaints and allegations. All four are currently listed as “pending,” and Chiellini denies the allegations in all four disputes.

The most recent dispute was filed on 9/12/2018, with the customers alleging that their investments were “inappropriate and unsuitable based on their investment objectives.” The clients are requesting damages of $150,000.

Published on:

Justin William Lopez (CRD #5162263) is a currently registered broker employed with J.P. Morgan Securities LLC (CRD #79) of Mineola, NY. His previous employers are Craig Scott Capital, LLC (CRD #155924, expelled by FINRA on 9/7/2017), Brookstone Securities, Inc. (CRD #13366, expelled by FINRA on 10/9/2012), both of Uniondale, NY, and JHS Capital Advisors, Inc. (CRD #112097) of Tampa, FL. He has been in the industry since 2006.

David-Sullivan-Accused-of-Excessive-Trading-on-More-Than-One-Occasion-300x200-300x200Lopez has two customer disputes in his FINRA record, the first of which was filed on 7/13/2018, alleging “unauthorized, unsuitable and excessive trading regarding the Equity Listed and Equity OTC investments.”  This client requests damages of $5,563,792.00.

The second disclosure, filed on 5/09/2017, has similar allegations of “suitability and excessive trading regarding equity OTC and equity listed investments.”  This client requests damages of $55,855.00.

Published on:

Suhail Saleem Khan (CRD #3168241) is a former registered broker and investment advisor who was last employed with LPL Financial LLC (CRD #6413) of Chicago, IL. His previous employers include Vision (CRD #47927) and U.S. Financial Investments, Inc. (CRD #120804), also of Chicago. No current employment information is available. He began in the industry in 1999.

Are-or-Were-Unsuitable-Non-Traded-REITs-in-Your-Portfolio-300x224-300x224Khan was barred by FINRA after he refused to answer a request for information from them. He was barred in all capacities, and from associating with a FINRA member in any capacity, effective 11/17/2017. Khan did not request a termination of his suspension within 3 months, so he was indefinitely barred from the industry, and remains so to this day.

On 5/25/2018, a customer filed a dispute alleging that from 2013 through 2017, Khan made “unsuitable, speculative investments” in his own hedge fund business, as well as one REIT and an oil & gas business. The customer also alleged that some of the investments contained unregistered securities, and has requested damages of $775,000.00. The case is currently listed as “pending.”

Published on:

Mitchell Brian Walk (CRD #3195375) is a currently registered broker and investment advisor. He has been employed by Kestra Investment Services, LLC (CRD #42046) of Longwood, FL since 2001. He was previously employed by Securities America, Inc. (CRD #10205) of Lavista, NE. He has been in the industry since 2000.

Lawrence-LaBine-Under-Fire-for-Alleged-Unsuitable-Recommendations-and-More-300x200Walk has five disclosures, all customer disputes in different stages. The most recent was filed on 08/14/2017, alleging that Walk made unsuitable recommendations to the client, and that Kestra Investment Services didn’t properly supervise those recommendations. The client is requesting damages of $72,000. The case is currently pending.

His next disclosure is also a pending customer dispute, filed on 10/4/2016. Walk is accused of misrepresentations in his recommendations (as well as other actions) in the sale of numerous alternative investment vehicles in August of 2014. This customer is requesting damages of $350,000.

Published on:

In July 2013, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) issued a lifetime ban upon Carl Birkelbach, the founder and principal of Birkelbach Investment Securities (headquartered in Chicago, Illinois), which prevents him from participating in any working capacity in the securities industry.  Mr. Birkelbach appealed the SEC’s ban, claiming in part that the SEC exceeded its authority in imposing such a severe penalty upon him.  Earlier this month, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit in Chicago denied his appeal and upheld the SEC ban, stating that Mr. Birkelbach’s offenses were sufficiently egregious to warrant the sanction imposed by the SEC.

As the head of Birkelbach Investment Securities, Mr. Birkelbach was required to supervise the trading activities of the company’s registered representatives, including William Murphy.  According to the SEC, Mr. Murphy engaged for years in unauthorized conduct, steering clients into unsuitable investments, and churning in client accounts — all of which Mr. Birkelbach was purportedly aware of.  Despite Mr. Birkelbach’s alleged knowledge of the wrongdoing taking place at his company, he imposed no discipline upon Mr. Murphy, never disapproved of a single trade by Murphy, and never contacted the most egregiously harmed customer to discuss the high volume of trading in the customer’s account.  During the years in question, the revenues from Mr. Murphy’s trading in that account, according to SEC calculations, represented nearly 20% of Birkelbach Investment Securities’ total revenue.  Even when the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) requested that Mr. Birkelbach place Mr. Murphy on heightened supervision, Mr. Birkelbach failed to comply.  As a result, FINRA imposed upon Mr. Birkelbach a punishment that ultimately became a lifetime ban from the securities industry in any capacity, which the SEC subsequently affirmed in its July 2013 ruling.

If you have questions about your legal rights, or have been the victim of investment fraud, please contact Scott Silver of the Silver Law Group for a free consultation at ssilver@silverlaw.com or Toll Free at (800) 975-4345.

Published on:

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) announced a fine against Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Smith, Inc. for $8 million for charging excessive mutual fund sales charges for retirement accounts. FINRA also ordered Merrill Lynch to pay $24.4 million in restitution to damaged customers on top of $64 million Merrill Lynch has already compensated damaged investors. According to the FINRA decision, mutual funds offer several classes of shares, each with different sales charges and fees and many mutual funds waive their initial charges for retirement accounts.  However, Merrill Lynch failed to pass these savings on to the investors.

Merrill Lynch’s retail platform frequently offered such discounts to retirement plan accounts and disclosed those waivers in their prospectuses. However, Merrill Lynch failed to frequently pass these savings on to the investors including retirement accounts.  Accordingly, about 41,000 small business retirement plan accounts, and approximately 6,800 charities and 403(b) retirement accounts available to ministers and employees of public schools, either paid sales charges when purchasing Class A shares, or purchased other share classes that unnecessarily subjected them to higher ongoing fees and expenses. Incredibly, in 2006, Merrill Lynch learned its small business retirement plan customers were overpaying, but continued to sell them more costly shares and failed to report the issue to FINRA for more than five years.

If you believe your portfolio was improperly managed or was charged excessive fees or costs, Silver Law Group will analyze your portfolio at no charge.   Additionally, if you have questions about your legal rights, or have been the victim of investment fraud, please contact Scott Silver of the Silver Law Group for a free consultation at ssilver@silverlaw.com or Toll Free at (800) 975-4345.

Contact Information