Investor Cases: Securities and Insurance Products

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We represent investors seeking to recover investment losses from the securities industry, including brokerage firms, financial advisors, investment advisory firms and investment advisors, throughout the United States in FINRA arbitrations, AAA arbitrations, JAMS arbitrations and both state and federal courts. 

We also represent investors seeking to recover losses from the insurance industry, including insurance agents, insurance agencies and insurance companies.

RLG has the experience, the reputation and the resources to obtain justice for our clients against the securities and insurance industries. 

We also represent the securities and insurance industries, including brokerage firms, financial advisors, investment advisory firms, investment advisors, insurance agents and insurance agencies, throughout the United States in FINRA arbitrations, AAA arbitrations, JAMS arbitrations and both state and federal courts.  RLG has the experience, the reputation and the resources to successfully defend the securities and insurance industries.

Our aggressive securities and corporate law attorneys represent clients in securities and insurance arbitrations and court actions arising from misconduct or sales practice violations, such as: 

  • Breach of fiduciary duty – The securities industry owes a fiduciary duty to act in the client’s best interests under federal law and many state laws.  A breach may occur when the securities industry puts its interests ahead of the client such as selling higher fee products, neglecting a managed account and undisclosed conflicts of interest
  • Financial Elder Abuse and Undue Influence – Any investor reaching a certain age (typically 65 years or older) and is the victim of a variety of financial abuses including breach of fiduciary duty or aiding and abetting a breach of fiduciary duty, may be entitled to recover enhanced compensatory damages plus attorneys’ fees, depending on the state statute at issue. California, for example, provides for 3x the compensatory damages plus attorneys’ fees if financial elder abuse is proven
  • Professional Negligence and Negligent Misrepresentation – An investment professional or company can be found negligent for failing to disclose a material fact to the investor that a reasonable investor would want to know, for failing to handle an investor’s account in a reasonably prudent manner or for failing to comply with industry rules or regulations
  • Unsuitable investment advice – FINRA applies the suitability standard as the basis for making investment recommendations. The factors to consider include the client’s investment objectives, age, risk tolerance and time horizon. If an investor is a senior citizen or a vulnerable adult, enhanced suitability factors must be considered under Notice to Members 07-43.  An industry professional who makes unsuitable recommendations can be held liable for the investor’s losses
  • Excessive trading or churning – Excessive trading or churning occurs when an industry professional makes frequent trades in a client’s account solely for the purpose of generating fees. If the trades are securities, it is called “churning” and if the frequency involves annuities, it is called “twisting” 
  • Unauthorized trading – Generally, industry professionals cannot enter a trade without the customer’s consent, unless the customer has authorized the trade or given discretion to the industry professional
  • Misrepresentation – An investment professional who misrepresents or omits a material fact about a securities or investment will likely face an investor claim
  • Over-concentration An investment professional who fails to reasonably diversify the client’s portfolio in a single investment, industry or class of investment will likely face an investor claim
  • Failure to supervise The investment industry has a duty to supervise their professionals to ensure their activities adhere to securities laws and industry rules
  • Excessive margin Excessive margin occurs when the industry professionals recommend margin without a reasonable purpose or without informed consent of the client

Industry Cases

RLG’s industry neutrality sets it apart from other law firms handling securities and insurance cases because RLG’s founder, Brandon S. Reif, has the rarest combination of securities and insurance industry knowledge, trial practice skills and a reputation for delivering favorable results on both sides of the securities industry that are unmatched in the industry. 

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RLG’s unbiased approach to securities industry work as pro-plaintiff and pro-defendant (or neutrality) is Mr. Reif’s forward-thinking business model as the “mercenary of law firms.”  RLG is not beholden to insurance carriers, financial institutions, investment sponsors or private equity.  Mr. Reif believes that proven results is more important to the firm’s reputation than the notion that law firms must choose defense work or plaintiff work. To this end, RLG does not align with a particular side of the securities industry.  

Investors regularly hire RLG for its unparalleled experience to reverse engineer the defense thinking and the considerations that the defense and their insurers use to set settlement and exposure reserves. RLG leverages its unmatched know-how to pressure the defense and their insurers.

The securities industry regularly hires RLG for best-in-class independent (Cumis) counsel to defend the case, to defend the ex-employee, to pressure the product sponsor or to battle with the insurance carrier. 

RLG is a natural choice for intra-industry disputes such as:

  • Workplace dissolutions including wrongful termination, discrimination, harassment and the like
  • Form U-5 expungement and defamation
  • Raiding and Broker Protocol
  • Trade secrets, copyrights and trademarks
  • Partnership and limited liability company dissolutions
  • Compensation including wages and deferred compensation
  • Business-sensitive and complex disputes:
    • Selling away, Ponzi schemes and undisclosed activities 
    • Involving executives, in-house counsel and compliance officers
  • Disputes with affiliates, subsidiaries and associated entities
  • Insurers and insurance agencies
  • Product sponsors, asset managers and property managers
  • Vendors including software, landlord, consultants and the like

Investigations, Enforcement and Disciplinary Actions

RLG regularly defends securities professionals and securities firms facing investigations, examinations, hearings and disciplinary actions by FINRA, the SEC and other self-regulatory organizations as well as state and federal securities regulators especially the California Department of Business Oversight and the California Department of Insurance. 

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RLG handles all aspects of FINRA and SEC investigations and disciplinary actions. The hallmark of our practice is to engage proactively with the regulators to dispose of matters before they become a matter of public record. RLG’s greatest success stories in the regulatory arena cannot be discussed or promoted because we made a persuasive showing of fact, law and/or public policy to convince the regulators to close the investigations without adverse action.  It is these silent victories that truly define RLG’s extensive experience and well-earned reputation when it comes to defending regulatory investigations and disciplinary actions.

RLG provides unmatched representation across a variety of enforcement actions including:

  • Responding to FINRA 8210 inquiries for documents, information and on-the-record testimony (OTRs)
  • Reconstituting the securities firm’s compliance and supervisory program to demonstrate mitigation and the reduced risk of recidivism
  • Responding to Wells notices
  • Analyzing the risks and rewards of a regulatory settlement, including the reputational risk of the public record
  • Mounting the defense for an enforcement action in federal court or the administrative hearing

Contact Our Experienced Attorneys

To arrange a consultation with an experienced attorney at RLG, please contact our office today.