Securities and Exchange Commission Issues Investor Bulletin

The SEC has issued an Investor Bulletin entitled, How to Check Out Your Financial Professional.

The SEC informs investors that they should check-out brokers at www.finra.org/brokercheck.com.

A potential red flag is that the broker may have other customer complaints. Those complaints may be reflected on the brokercheck record.

If the broker has other customer complaints, this may be a sign to take your money elsewhere.

If you lost money with your stockbroker, contact Place & Hanley, LLC at (866) 318-4725 for a no cost initial consultation.

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Attention Former Clients of Donna Jesse Tucker of UBS Financial Services

The Securities and Exchange Commission charged Donna Jesse Tucker, a broker based in Roanoke, Va., with defrauding elderly customers, including some who are legally blind, by stealing their funds for her personal use and falsifying their account statements to cover up her fraud.

According to the SEC’s complaint filed in U.S. District Court for the Western District of Virginia, Donna Jessee Tucker siphoned $730,289 from elderly customers and used the money to pay for such personal expenses as vacations, vehicles, clothes, and country club membership. Tucker ensured that the customers received their monthly account statements electronically, knowing that they were unable or unwilling to access their statements in that format. The SEC further alleges that Tucker engaged in unauthorized trading and other financial transactions while making misrepresentations to customers about their investment accounts and forging brokerage, banking, and other documents.

In a related matter, Donna Tucker pled guilty in the United States District Court for the Western District of Virginia in Roanoke to wire fraud and tax evasion charges. Tucker’s plea agreement holds her accountable for restitution to victims including but not limited to up to $1 million.

If you were a client of broker Donna Jesse Tucker, contact Place & Hanley, LLC. We will provide you with a no cost initial consultation. We will let you know if you are entitled to a recovery.

Call (866) 318-4725

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Securities Arbitration – The Basics of FINRA Arbitration

How long is an arbitration case from start to finish?

Arbitration claims generally take 12-14 months to complete from filing the claim to rendering an award. Turnaround time varies due to the many factors affecting the arbitration claim: number of parties/witnesses, issue complexity, and scheduling conflicts between parties and arbitrators. Under certain circumstances, The Claimant may also request an expedited proceeding.

What are the circumstances that allow a case to be expedited?

Like various state statures, FINRA has implemented various measures to expedite arbitration proceedings in order to accommodate seniors or seriously ill parties. While FINRA staff cannot shorten the time requirements set in the FINRA arbitration code procedure, staff will be able to arbitration administration proceedings in cases involving seniors or seriously ill parties.

Under these types of proceedings, the FINRA Dispute Resolution staff aims to complete the arbitrator selection process, schedule the pre-hearing conference, serve the final award, and determine the interest of both parties in regards to mediation.

Expedited cases encourage arbitrators to take the party’s health and age into consideration and be sensitive to their needs when scheduling hearing dates, resolving discovery disputes, and determining postponement reasons. If the proceeding party is a senior or seriously ill, the arbitration panel will be expected to press for hearing dates and deadlines that will help expedite the process, but still provide a fair amount of time for case preparation.

FINRA Arbitration Attorneyst at The Law Offices of Place and Hanley, LLC are dedicated to protecting investor rights. If you’ve been a victim of pursuing FINRA arbitration, contact Place & Hanley, LLC for a free consultation at 866-318-4725.

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The Law Offices of Place and Hanley – Securities Arbitration Attorneys

Here at the Law Offices of Place & Hanley, LLC, we are dedicated to helping investors who’ve been victims of securities fraud. We primarily focus on representing investors in securities claims, stockbroker misconduct, and those who have had their brokerage accounts mishandled and as a result have lost their savings and retirement funds.

Our securities arbitration attorneys have represented thousands of clients nationwide in state and federal courts in order to resolve financial disputes between brokerage firms, customers, and other financial institutions. They have represented thousands of clients who were victim to the following:

  • Misrepresentation
  • Unauthorized Transactions
  • Commission Churning
  • Excessive failures & Mark-Ups
  • Botched Transfers
  • Disappearing Funds
  • Unregistered Brokers
  • Boiler Room Sales Practices
  • Other wrongful acts

Place & Hanley has also prosecuted cases involving the following:

  • Stocks
  • Bonds
  • “Penny Stocks”
  • “Junk” Bonds
  • Options
  • Commodities
  • Mutual Funds
  • Derivative Securities
  • Auction rate securities
  • Other investments

Our attorneys have practiced before the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA). They have filed claims against the nation’s top brokerage firms, including the major Wall Street Institutions. If you’ve lose money as a result of securities fraud, contact the FINRA Securities Arbitration Attorneys at The Law Office of Place & Hanley for a free initial consultation as you might just be able to recover your losses.

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The Law Offices of Place & Hanley – FINRA Arbitration Attorneys

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, Inc. (FINRA) is a private corporation that acts as a self-regulatory organization (SRO). FINRA is the successor to the National Association of Securities Dealers, Inc. (NASD) and the member regulation, enforcement and arbitration operations of the New York Stock Exchange. It is a non-governmental and self-regulatory organization that performs financial regulation of member brokerage firms and exchange markets.

FINRA operates the largest dispute resolution forum in the securities industry to assist in the monetary and business dispute resolution between and among investors, brokerage firms, and individual brokers.
About FINRA Arbitration

FINRA operates the largest arbitration forum in United States for dispute resolution between customer and member firms, as well as between brokerage firm employees and their firms. Virtually all investor and stockbroker agreements include mandatory arbitration agreements, whereby investors and their brokerage firms waive their right to trial in a court of law. While arbitration cases are the usual last resort resolution procedure, class action cases are often brought and permitted to go forward in courts as well, where binding arbitration contracts are sometimes rejected, typically after an unconscionable rule.

Duty to Arbitrate

Customers are bound to FINRA arbitration by contract. Registered representatives and their firms are contractually bound to arbitrate their disputes by their membership in FINRA, formerly the NASD. The broker-dealer and the stockbroker, upon applying for membership in the FINRA, agree to be bound by the rules of FINRA.

Commencing an Arbitration

Arbitrations are commenced by filing a Statement of Claim within the applicable arbitration forum with a submission agreement and the required filing fees. FINRA fees can range from $475 to $1800 depending on the amount in controversy. An initial damage analysis may be performed by a forensic accountant prior to filing the Statement of Claim. Depending on the case’s nature, a pre-litigation damage analysis may not be necessary.

If you have lost money as a result of securities fraud you may be able to recover your financial losses. The Law Offices of Place & Hanley, LLC is dedicated to helping investors. We are dedicated to protecting investor rights and we offer free consultations. If you’ve been a victim of pursuing FINRA arbitration, contact Place & Hanley, LLC at 866-318-4725.

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Florida Securities Arbitration Lawyers

Arbitration is an alternative dispute resolution process. In the United States securities industry, arbitration has been the preferred method of dispute resolution between brokerage firms and between firms and their customers. The majority of all disputes involving brokerage firms are resolved in arbitration. Parties agree to arbitrate their disputes before any such disputes arise through the securities industry use of a pre-dispute arbitration agreement.

Participants to an arbitration proceeding have their dispute resolved by impartial persons, known as arbitrators, knowledgeable in areas in controversy. Rather than have a matter decided by judge and jury, arbitration of broker-dealer disputes have been used as an alternative because it is a prompt and inexpensive means of resolving complicated issues.

Arbitration is governed by the rules of the arbitration forum, and by state and federal law. Arguments regarding hearing locations, panel composition, obtainable discoveries, which disputes can be arbitrated and other disputes, can and do arise.

Most states have provisions in their civil practice rules for arbitration. These rules provide a basic framework for the arbitration and due process considerations. It also lists procedures for confirmation of an arbitrator’s award, which gives an arbitration award the same force and effect of a court trial judgment. Generally, arbitration is confidential. Documents submitted in arbitration are not publicly-available. Securities arbitrations are primarily filed with FINRA, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority.

At Place & Hanley, our primary goal is to represent investors who have lost their savings and retirement funds as a result of mishandled brokerage accounts. For a free, no-obligation consultation, contact the Law Offices of Place & Hanley today.

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Stockbroker Fraud Attorneys – Churning

Stockbroker fraud covers wrongdoings such as theft, lying and deceit, and churning. By definition, churning occurs when a broker engages in excessive trading in an account. Brokers churn accounts in attempts to generate commissions. Often times, brokers will sell the winners to show a small profit while keeping the losers. To determine and establish that your broker has churned your account, we will demonstrate the pattern of excessive trading activity in your account. This demonstration can be done in a number of ways, one way is through calculations to determine the annualized rate of return that would be necessary to cover the commissions charged in your account. Another way includes the number of times the equity in your account is turned over to purchase securities. Lastly, the purchase and sale trading activity that occurs in your account can be used to demonstrate whether your broker has churned your account.

Brokers buy and sell securities in an account to generate commissions in order to convince their clients of reasons they should quick profits. These reasons may seem valid, but are often excuses for the broker to charge excess commissions. In these cases, it’s possible to demonstrate the account was actually being churned.

There are regulations and laws written to protect investors. Securities regulators maintain the securities industry and issue fines and suspensions. Statistics have proven and demonstrated that investors are far more likely to recover on their cases if they are represented by experienced attorneys. Most investor’s claims against brokerage firms must be resolved in securities arbitration instead of court since brokerage firms routinely require their customers to sign binding arbitration agreements at the onset of the brokerage-client relationship.
If you have lost money as a result of stockbroker fraud, you may be able to still recover your losses. The Law Offices of Place & Hanley, LLC dedicates its practice to helping investors who have been victims of stockbroker fraud. Contact the Stockbroker Fraud Attorneys of the Law Offices of Place & Hanley, LLC for a free initial consultation.

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Place & Hanley – Commodities Arbitration & Litigation

Commodities transactions dispute resolutions can be challenging due to the complexity of issues, trade volume, parties involved, and the amount of money at issue. Rather than the traditional lawsuit in court, another way of resolving commodities disputes quickly, privately, and cost effectively is through arbitration. Arbitration is an alternative dispute resolution process in which disputes are resolved by impartial persons knowledgeable in the areas in controversy. Those persons are called arbitrators.

Often styled as a “Businessman’s” method of dispute resolution, arbitration is governed by state and federal law and the rules of the arbitration forum. Arbitration is generally confidential and documents submitted in arbitration are not available to public eyes, unlike court-related filings. Commodities arbitrations are usually filed with the National Futures Association. Issues such as hearing locations, panel composition, which disputes can be arbitrated, obtainable discoveries can and usually arise in arbitration along with other arguments and issues. Civil practice rules have state provisions for arbitration which provide a basic framework for the arbitration and due process considerations and even procedures for the confirmation of an arbitrators’ award which is a procedure that gives an award based on the force and effect of a judgment after a trial in court.

The Law Offices of Place & Hanley, LLC is dedicated to helping investors and representing investors who have lost their savings and retirement due to mishandled brokerage accounts. If you have lost money as a result of stockbroker fraud, you may be able to recover your financial losses. Contact the Commodities Arbitration & Litigation Lawyers at the Law Offices of Place & Hanley, LLC for a free initial consultation.

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Securities Litigation Attorneys at Place & Hanley

Securities cases are complex, often requiring specialized attorneys to handle them correctly. In addition to their difficult nature, securities litigation most often involves delicate matters and high consequences. These claims have the potential to be very financially and publicly damaging, with risks including damage awards and negative publicity. Sometimes the negative publicity can be far exaggerated from the actual claims filed.

The Law Offices of Place & Hanley have a history of success defending against securities class actions and shareholder derivative litigation. Our agressive and dedicated defense has led to many motions to dismiss, as well as many motions for summary judgement, motions for judgement on the pleadings, and appeals, in various courts including the United States Supreme Court.

Regarding the difference between securities arbitration and traditional litigation, arbitration also includes filing a claim and building a case through evidence such as documents or witnesses. In litigation, this claim would be reviewed by a judge or jury in court. With arbitration, claims are instead brought to a final hearing with a panel of arbitrators. Both sides must present mandatory discovery documents, which speeds the discovery process, and usually arbitration proceedings can be finished in 12-14 months. There is also a limited right for claimants to appeal the decision of the panel.

The attorneys of Place & Hanley are committed to protecting our clients against securities cases. If you are up against a securities class action or shareholder derivative litigation, contact our team today.

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Nationally Recognized Securities and Commodities Arbitration Law Firm

The Law Offices of Place and Hanley, LLC have been recognized as a securities and commodities arbitration firm that provides unparallelled representation to investors around the nation. Our firm has represented investor clients in a variety of claims, including claims against brokers, broker dealers, financial advisers, investment advisers, and insurance companies. Often these clients experienced major losses to their savings because of errors and poor business habits of their brokerage firms.

Recovering these kinds of losses to savings and retirement funds is the top priority of Place & Hanley. In these cases, brokerage firms have mishandled accounts and caused investors great stress and instability in their future. We represent individual investors who have suffered mishandling of their brokerage accounts and are filing claims for securities and stockbroker misconduct. We have successfully represented claims against major Wall Street institutions and top brokerage firms.

Our lawyer team has helped individual investors recover millions of dollars for their losses. We also have experience with group arbitration securities claims and class action litigation. In these cases, we’ve successfully recovered attorneys’ fees and punitive damages for the investors. Our firm is dedicated to defending the rights of investors who have lost investments due to their financial adviser, broker or brokerage firm’s malicious or neglectful acts.

If you are an investor and have experienced losses at the hands of your broker, contact our team today. We have the experience and knowledge to navigate your claim and help you recover the damages you’ve undergone.

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