FINRA/SEC Investigations And Enforcement Proceedings
Mr. Betts represents brokers in connections with FINRA enforcement proceedings, including investigations, examinations and disciplinary actions. This includes representing brokers in responding to FINRA requests for documents and on-the-record interviews (“OTRs”) during which brokers are required to appear and testify under oath. Some of the common subjects of FINRA enforcement proceedings include:
Forms U4/U5 – Late filing, failure to file and filing of false, misleading or inaccurate forms or amendments
Suitability / unsuitable recommendations
Churning or excessive trading
Failure to supervise
Communications with the public
Misrepresentations or material omissions
Outside business activities
Selling away / private securities transactions
Customer protection rule
Regulation T and margin requirements
Conversion or improper use of funds or securities
Forgery or falsification of records
Mr. Betts is also experienced in representing brokers in FINRA-related expungement proceedings. These cases generally arise from negative information appearing on a broker’s Form U4 or U5 and available to the public through FINRA’s Central Registration Depository (CRD) system and through the “BrokerCheck” system. Such negative information often (but not always) arises from complaints made by a customer and/or arbitration proceedings initiated by a customer. In many cases, following the completion of arbitration proceedings or otherwise, the negative information can be “expunged” from the broker’s record. There are a number of steps that must be taken in order to satisfy FINRA’s requirements for expungement, and FINRA has issued guidance summarizing how the expungement process works.
Michael J. Betts LLC provides business litigation counsel and alternative dispute resolution services in a wide range of matters, including commercial litigation, business disputes, securities and investment-related litigation, and FINRA arbitrations.