LewinsLaw, P.C. Dedicated to protecting the rights of investors

Protecting Investors’ Rights

Breach Of Duty Guidance From A Former Stock Broker

Richard Lewins offers a unique perspective and insider view of the world of brokering. As a former broker for Merrill Lynch and other firms, he understands the methods brokers and firms use to make decisions. He knows the inherent risk in the market but also understands how buying and selling can be manipulated to serve the needs of the broker or firm.

This was the reason Mr. Lewins left the market and as an experienced adult went to law school. He wanted to hold both brokers and firms accountable for their actions. Today at his firm LewinsLaw, P.C., he represents and protects the interests of his clients in Dallas and, with the aid of technology, nationwide.

What Is Breach Of Fiduciary Duty?

Breach of fiduciary duty is when an investment advisor acts negligently or recklessly when giving a client or clients advice. If an investment advisor misrepresents a security or omits important information about a security or transaction, these are breaches of fiduciary duty. Investment advisors must not have a conflict of interest and must always seek the best price and terms. They must act with loyalty and good faith toward their clients at all times. Investment advisors must put the interests of their clients before their own. For example, they cannot buy and sell stocks merely to procure a load or fee for themselves which is known as “churning.”

What Is The Standard Of Care?

Because of the significance of what is at stake and the amount of trust clients must give to their financial professionals, these professionals have a fiduciary duty or “financial accountability” to their clients. The level of this accountability and liability varies depending on the role of the financial advisor. Here are some common responsibilities and differences:

  • A stockbroker has a slightly less stringent duty of care to clients than a brokerage firm or an investment advisor.
  • A broker must make recommendations that are suitable given the client’s situation and intended goals. However, brokers do not necessarily have a fiduciary duty. They can only be held accountable and liable for the suitability of their recommendations or actions.
  • An investment advisor has a higher standard of care. They also have a fiduciary duty to their clients.
  • An investment advisor charges an annual fee, whereas a broker charges on investments.
  • Investment advisors have a higher standard of disclosure.

Any time a financial professional acts only in their own interest, puts one client’s interests before another client’s or does not put forth their best efforts and sizable harm is done, it’s time to consult an attorney.

Work With An Attorney Recognized For Securities Law

Dallas securities attorney Richard Lewins is a member of an elite group of legal professionals devoted to helping people recover from various types of financial loss. He can determine whether you suffered a suitability issue or breach of fiduciary duty. In securities law, damages recovered can include both out-of-pocket losses and the loss of the market gains. Call 972-893-9245 or send Mr. Lewins an introductory email about your issue. Initial consultations are always free.

Additional Practice Areas

  • Churning
  • Failure to Diversify And Over Concentration
  • Unauthorized Trading
  • Theft
  • Failure to Hedge
  • Failure to Supervise
  • Improper Use Of Margin
  • Selling Away