Daniel Carlson is a securities litigation attorney in San Diego who specializes in recovering investment losses for his clients.
English: Seal of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
In late December of last year, securities regulators for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts filed an administrative lawsuit accusing LPL Financial, LLC of violating securities laws in regards to their sale of non-traded REITs (Real Estate Investment Trusts). After an investigation of 587 transactions valued at $28 million dollars, agents found that LPL violated prospectus requirements in 569 of those transactions. The lawsuit demanded that LPL make full restitution to all Massachusetts investors who invested in the non-traded REITs.
On February 6th, 2013, the lawsuit settled when Massachusetts’ regulators ordered LPL Financial to pay up to $2 million dollars to investors and another $500,000 in fines. Massachusetts residents will be allowed to surrender their non-traded REIT’s back to LPL at the investors’ original purchase price, which was around $10 dollars a share.
REITs investments vary, many invest in commercial real estate such as strip malls and hotels. They are often promoted to investors with the sales pitch that the properties will increase in value. Of course, this may or may not happen. Many REITs are publicly traded, meaning that an investor can easily sell the interest if the investor needs to for any reason. A large problem for many investors with non-traded REIT’s, which do not trade on securities exchanges, is that they can be very difficult to sell and get out of. In addition, investors can continue being forced to contribute to the non-traded REIT for things like maintenance and repairs, depending on the language of the individual investment agreement. There are many non-traded REITs who stopped distributions long ago and left investors holding an interest that has little value as malls and hotels closed.
Not surprisingly, non-traded REIT’s generate higher fees and commissions for brokers. This can act as an incentive to unscrupulous agents to sell them to unsuspecting investors, especially seniors.
TIME IS OF THE ESSENCE
While the above action only applies to residents of Massachusetts, LPL sold the non-traded REITs nationwide. Residents of other states, including California, would be well advised to seek legal consultation on their non-traded REITs sold by LPL and other advisors. Since many of the LPL REITs were sold beginning in 2006, it is important to pursue your claim as soon as possible. .
If you think that you have been the victim of investment fraud in regards to non-traded REITs sold by LPL or other companies, contact Daniel Carlson at the Carlson Law Firm today for a free consultation at 619-544-9300.
Tags: breach of fiduciary duty, Broker Fraud, California, Investing, Investment Fraud, LPL, LPL Financial, Real estate investment trust, San Diego, Securities Fraud Attorney San Diego
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The Securities and Exchange Commission today accused local San Diego radio talk show host and bestselling author Ray Lucia of misleading potential investors in regards to his investment strategy called “Buckets of Money.”
Seal of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
The SEC alleges that Lucia misled potential investors when he told them that his method had been “back-checked” using historical data from past bear markets and that the investors money would be safe and grow. According to the SEC, the investment program failed to account for fees and included artificially lowered inflation rates. When historically accurate rates of inflation were used, a 1973 investor would have run out of money by 1989, the SEC said, a far cry from the return claimed by Lucia.
The SEC said Lucia and his company “have admitted during the SEC’s investigation that the only testing that actually performed were some calculations that Lucia made in the 1990’s – copies of which no longer exist – and two two-page spreadsheets.” Lucia was aware that using the undervalued inflation rate would “make the results look more favorable for the Buckets of Money Strategy,” according to the SEC.
In addition to barring Lucia from making misleading claims, the SEC’s Order instituting Administrative and Cease-and-Desist Proceedings seeks financial penalties and “other remedial actions.”
Lucia quickly posted a passionate defense to the SEC allegations on his website on Wednesday afternoon, stressing that the investigation was a civil matter and not a criminal case and that it involved something he had not used in over two years. “I want to assure you that I intend to vigorously defend this absolutely meritless lawsuit and will seek an early trial,” said Lucia.
Despite the allegations, Lucia’s website is promoting a seminar to be held at The Hilton San Diego Resort & Spa on September 22nd, which will be co-hosted by actor and financial columnist Ben Stein, and former San Diego Mayor and current talk show host Roger Hedgecock.
Carlson Law Firm is reviewing potential claims against Ray Lucia and his affiliates. To speak with an attorney regarding your, please call Carlson Law Firm 619-544-9300 for a free consultation.
Tags: Ben Stein, financial advisor, financial advisor malpractice, financial advisors, Fraud Attorney, Investment Fraud, investment loss, investment recovery lawyer, Lucia, Ray Lucia, San Diego, SEC, Securities Fraud Attorney San Diego, stockbroker malpractice, Talk radio, U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission
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In October 2011, a former Agent for Hartford and Nationwide Life Insurance companies pled guilty to charges of theft and received a 10-year prison sentence. By Matthew J. Ryan’s own admission, he exploited weaknesses in the insurance companies’ practices and procedures in order to steal from the variable annuity contracts Hartford and Nationwide issued to his clients.
Ryan created fake companies and bogus “transfer forms” which he had his clients sign. The bogus forms gave Ryan the ability to divert funds from his customers’ variable annuities and, ultimately, into his own accounts. Hartford and Nationwide honored thousands of Ryan’s transfer requests, despite the fact that the fraudulent documents were obviously illegitimate. The fraudulent documentation was not detected until 2010. By that time, however, the former
agent had diverted an excess of $3M over a period of five years.
Two additional insurance companies have settled claims made by Ryan’s fixed variable annuity customers. Currently, combined suits of more than $3M against Nationwide and Hartford are pending.
Are you a former client of Mathew J. Ryan? Do you believe that your variable annuity contract assets have been or are being illegally diverted or invested unsuitably? If the answer to any of
these questions is yes, contact investment fraud lawyer Daniel Carlson at Carlson Law in San Diego for a free consultation. As an experienced investment recovery attorney, Mr. Carlson may be able to help you recoup all or part of financial loss.
Tags: Annuity (US financial products), Business, Contract, financial loss, Financial services, fraud, Insurance, investment fraud lawyer, investment recovery attorney, Life annuity, Matthew J. Ryan, San Diego, variable annuities, variable annuity, variable annuity contracts
Posted in Broker Fraud, Fiduciary Duty Breach, Investment Fraud, Securities Arbitration, Securities Fraud, Securities Litigation, Stock Loss | Comments (1)
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Although it’s been three years since financial misconduct on Wall Street rocked the nation, investors still have opportunity to recoup some or all of their financial loss.
If you suffered financial loss during the recent crisis, your broker, brokerage or financial advisor may be legally responsible for that loss. A variety of legal actions can be brought against financial professioals for malpractice, such as negligent investment misrepresentation for making inappropriate investment product recommendations, intentinal securities fraud and inapropriate account turnover/excessive trading or “churning” to name only a few examples.
“Each state has different statutes of limitations for different kinds of claims,” explains Daniel Carlson of Carlson Law, a securities litigation firm in San Diego. “Your ability to file for damages depends on where you live and the kind of claims you have. While one state may have a three-year statute of limitations for all claims, others may have deadlines as long as 10 years for claims like breach of fiduciary duty. And in some states, the ‘discovery rule’ applies to fraud. That means the statute of limitations’ clock doesn’t start ticking until an investor ‘discovers’ he or she has been defrauded.”
Defrauded investors may also be able to file claims in more than one state. “It depends upon where you live, where you transacted business with your broker and whether the account agreement has a ‘choice of law’ provision indicating the state law that applies in the event of any claims,” Carlson says.
“And of course there’s more than one way to file a claim,” he adds. “If there are several options available, a good litigator will choose the state and the claims that give their clients the best chance of success.”
Did you experience financial loss due to your financial advisor’s misconduct? Did your broker lie to you about an investment? Did he or she give you advice inappropriate to your financial goals? Don’t wait any longer to fight for the compensation you deserve. Remember, legal deadlines do exist, and your time could be running out.
To discuss your options, contact Carlson Law at 619-544-9300 for a free consultation with an experienced investment recovery lawyer.
“Even if claims seem to have exceeded the applicable statute of limitations, defrauded investors should still contact an attorney,” Carlson advises. “By using all the legal means at their disposal, securities fraud attorneys can sometimes still recover client losses through arbitration even after a statute of limitations has expired.”
Tags: breach of fiduciary duty, broker malpractice, churning, claims, damages, Dan Carlson, financial advisors, financial loss, fraud, investment recovery lawyer, Investor, Law, San Diego, securities fraud attorney, securities litigation firm, statutes of limitations, Wall Street
Posted in Broker Fraud, Fiduciary Duty Breach, Investment Fraud, Negligent Misrepresentation, Securities Arbitration, Securities Fraud, Securities Law, Securities Litigation, Stock Fraud, Stock Loss | Comments (2)
Mutual Funds 101
Mutual funds are sold by companies that pool money (capital) from many investors. This capital is then invested in bonds, stocks and/or other securities. Investors in the fund all have shares, and these shares represent a part of the fund’s holdings.
If you’re interested in making an investment, a mutual fund may or may not be the right choice for you. Like all investments, they come with many different levels of risk. They aren’t insured or guaranteed by financial institutions or government agencies, even those sold by banks. However, because mutual funds are often a mix of various bonds and/or stocks, the risk is some mutual funds is “spread out” or diversified. That said, some mutual funds are not diversified, and it is important to understand that a mutual fund investment can be very high risk, or very low risk, depending upon the holdings and the goals of the fund. Each fund must be looked at individually to determine if it is appropriate for the investor, in the same manner as any individual stock or other investment.
Mutual funds are managed by professional fund managers. These managers invest the money investors contribute into individual stocks, bonds and other securities. And because mutual funds buy and sell securities in large amounts at one time, they usually incur fewer fees, thus operating in a cost-efficient manner. However, it is very important to carefully examine prior to purchase all of the fees and costs associated with the fund you are purchasing as they can vary greatly and take a significant bite out of your return.
If you feel your financial advisor placed you in inappropriate mutual fund investments and/or failed to disclose the fees and costs associated with investment or that the underlying holdings of the fund were beyond your tolerance for risk, you may have a case. Call Carlson Law at 858-544-9300 for a free consultation.
Tags: bonds, Broker Fraud, capital, disclosure, diversification, Fiduciary Duty Breach, financial, financial loss, FINRA, Fraud Attorney, Investment, investment attorney, investment loss, Investor, investors, losses, mutual fund, mutual funds, Negligent Misrepresentation, San Diego, securities, Securities Fraud Attorney San Diego, securities lawsuit, Stock Loss, stocks, unsuitability, Unsuitable
Posted in Broker Fraud, Fiduciary Duty Breach, Investment Fraud, Negligent Misrepresentation, Securities Arbitration, Securities Fraud, Securities Law, Securities Litigation, Stock Fraud, Stock Loss | Comments (0)
Making financial investments with money from a loan on your home is generally a poor, high risk activity. And it’s a particularly poor idea when the investment is a private placement that’s speculative and unable to be liquidated easily or traded publically. Brokerage houses that encourage clients to take out extra mortgages or home equity loans in order to buy risky investments in limited partnership and private placements are often held liable for their customers’ financial loss.
In 2009, the Ameritas Investment Corporation was fined $100,000 by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) for not supervising one of its brokers whose deceptive financial recommendations to customers included home refinancing to purchase securities. The broker was fined $60,000 by FINRA, and her license was suspended for five years.
If your broker encouraged you to take out real estate loans in order to invest in any private securities, limited partnerships or other investments, you should seek the advice of a securities attorney. Contact Carlson Law for a free consultation.
Tags: Broker Fraud, Fiduciary Duty Breach, financial loss, Investment Fraud, investment loss, investment recovery, limited partnerships, Negligent Misrepresentation, private securities, San Diego, Securities Arbitration, Securities Attorney, Securities Fraud Attorney San Diego, securities lawsuit
Posted in Broker Fraud, Fiduciary Duty Breach, Investment Fraud, Negligent Misrepresentation, Securities Arbitration, Securities Fraud, Securities Law, Securities Litigation, Stock Fraud | Comments (1)