Articles Tagged with Woodbury Financial

Chicago-based Stoltmann Law Offices represents investors who’ve suffered losses from alternative investments. Some brokers like to pitch investors on the idea of making a lot of money by investing in alternative investments, mostly because brokers get paid handsome commissions for selling them.  GPB Capital and more recently, GWG Holdings are examples of alternative investments that were pushed hard by brokerage firms, with terrible results. There is a sub-category of these investments called “liquid alternative”, which are complex and costly for clients.

FINRA, the U.S. securities industry regulator, recently issued a warning about liquid “alts,” which invest in assets “other than stocks and bonds — such as real estate, commodities and derivatives — to give retail investors exposure to alternative investments in a vehicle that can be traded daily. They are touted as a way to beat market returns but also can be risky and expensive.”

“While these funds may be appropriate for some investors,” the regulator’s warning stated, “FINRA has consistently emphasized the importance of member firms’ sales practice obligations for these and other products, especially when such products may carry additional risks for customers.” These products are inappropriate for investors unless their objective is speculation – plain and simple.

AdobeStock_17723177-1-300x175The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) ordered Woodbury Financial to pay $1.1 million to a couple whose broker invested their money in an aircraft company, a military building in Indiana, variable annuities, and A-share mutual funds, among other unsuitable investments. A three-person arbitration panel last week found that Woodbury “permitted the execution of unsuitable transactions as a result of its failure to discharge its duty to supervise the former broker,” Robert H. Hoffman. Hoffman was barred from the industry in November 2017 after he refused to cooperate with FINRA. FINRA had been investigating him after claims surfaced that he made unsuitable recommendations and unauthorized transactions, excessively traded accounts and private securities transactions, and other things. Robert Hoffman currently has a $3.2 million complaint against him for suitability, unauthorized trading and churning, also known as excessive trading. These are particularly egregious violations of securities laws and internal firm rules.
A brokerage firm like Woodbury Financial must reasonably oversee its brokers in order to make sure that they do not violate securities laws or internal firm rules. If the brokerage firm does not do so, it may be liable for losses on a contingency fee basis. Woodbury Financial can be sued in the FINRA arbitration forum.
Robert Hayes Hoffman was previously registered with Robert W. Baird in Milwaukee, Wisconsin from October 1999 until January 2002, Northwestern Mutual Investment Services in Indianapolis, Indiana from October 1999 until May 2006, Woodbury Financial Services in Greenwood, Indiana from July 2006 until March 2017, and Thurston, Springer, Miller, Her & Titak in Indianapolis from April 2017 until May 2017. He has three customer disputes against him, two of which are pending, one financial pending matter, two regulatory matters and one judgment/lien, according to his online, FINRA BrokerCheck report. He has been permanently barred from the industry.

AdobeStock_77502568-1-300x199Did you lose money with Jason LeBlanc? If so, the attorneys at Stoltmann Law Offices are interested in speaking with you about your losses. Recently, Jason LeBlanc entered into a Letter of Acceptance, Waiver and Consent (AWC) with the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA). It was alleged that LeBlanc failed to disclose several outside business activities to his firm, Girard Securities, between January 2012 and September 2015. He also allegedly provide inaccurate information about an outside business activity to his firm. He also allegedly misused customer funds by commingling person and customer funds in various bank accounts. These are against securities rules and regulations. Girard Securities may be liable for your losses because the firm has a duty to reasonably supervise its employees and, if it does not, can be held liable for losses on a contingency fee basis. Please call 312-332-4200 today for your free consultation about bringing a claim against the firm.
According to his online FINRA BrokerCheck report, LeBlanc was registered with Merrill Lynch in New York, New York from May 1994 until February 1996, Stanford Group Company from January 1996 until February 1996, Stanford Group in Houston, Texas from August 1996 until March 2009, Woodbury Financial in Houston from March 2009 until April 2009 and Girard Securities in Fulshear, Texas from April 2009 until September 2015. He has three customer disputes against him. He has been permanently barred from the industry.

AdobeStock_1800313-1-300x204Did you lose money with Lawrence Thomas, a former registered broker with Woodbury Financial? If so, the attorneys at Stoltmann Law Offices are interested in speaking with you about those losses. Please call our Chicago-based law firm at 312-332-4200 to speak to an attorney. We take cases on a contingency fee basis only, so we only receive money if you recover yours. The call is free with no obligation. We sue firms like Woodbury Financial in the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) arbitration forum.
According to a recent Letter of Acceptance, Waiver and Consent (AWC) with FINRA, Lawrence Thomas was accused of directing his assistant to forge the signatures of three firm customers on 10 documents. For this, he was fined $5,000 and suspended for three months. He was also accused of recommending an unauthorized product to Woodbury customers. Thomas then failed to appear for his on-the-record testimony with FINRA, and was subsequently barred from the industry.
According to his online FINRA BrokerCheck report, Thomas was registered with Carillon Investments, Hornor, Townsend & Kent, Sun Investment Services, Royal Alliance Associates, Woodbury Financial Services in North Attleboro, Massachusetts from January 2005 until January 2013, Brooklight Place Securities and Essex Securities. He is currently not registered and has been barred from the industry.

Stoltmann Law Offices is interested in speaking with investors who invested money with Joseph R. Butler, a former registered representative with Woodbury Financial. The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) barred Butler in all capacities for converting a customer’s funds and submitting a false annuity beneficiary change request. The customer was suffering from declining mental health, and Butler allegedly converted more than $170,000 and named himself the primary beneficiary and heir on the policy he sold her. Butler befriended the elderly widow and for years, wrote and cashed checks to himself out of the customer’s account, on top of opening the annuity and naming himself as the beneficiary. He also added himself to the customer’s bank accounts without her knowledge. These are against securities rules and regulations.

Joseph R. Butler was registered with Woodbury Financial Services in Clinton, Maryland from June 1997 until August 2012. He is currently registered with Innovation Partners in Charlotte, North Carolina and has been since October 2012. He has two customer disputes against him, one of which is currently pending. If you invested money with Butler, please call our securities law offices at 312-332-4200 to speak to an attorney about your options. We may be able to help you recover your money in the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) arbitration process. The call is free with no obligation. We sue firms such as Woodbury Financial for not properly supervising representatives such as Butler. They can be held liable for money losses.


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