How much of your money is invested in the stock market?
Business Insider estimates the global stock market was worth $69 trillion in 2014. When you add in all other kinds of investment securities, financial assets totaled $300 trillion the world over.
While your portion may only be a drop in the bucket, your investments are likely vital to your quality of life, your financial security and your retirement. You probably can’t afford to lose your money in the stock market, can you?
Unfortunately, investment fraud can and does happen. When brokers and corporations fail to follow the rules, it can result in lost money for investors both big and small.
If you suspect investment fraud, you may want to consult with an attorney.
Investments attorneys can be allies for individuals who have been misled by unscrupulous brokers, whistleblowers who have been punished for revealing a company’s illegal activities and investors who have lost money due to corporate mismanagement.
Today’s investments lawyers can provide assistance in all the following areas:
- Stockbroker malpractice: Investors rely on brokers to provide accurate and truthful information about stocks and other securities. When a broker either willfully or negligently provides incorrect information about investment risk or performance, it could be a case of stockbroker malpractice.
- Whistleblowers: Sometimes it takes the action of a whistleblower to bring cases of fraud to light. In exchange for their information, the law provides whistleblowers protection and may even entitle them to compensation.
- Shareholder rights: Shareholders own a company but sometimes they may not be afforded their right to have a say in how the business is managed. Investments lawyers may be able to help in cases in which shareholder rights are violated.
- Corporate malfeasance: Insider trading, the use of company assets for personal purposes and negotiating poor terms for a buyout can all be examples of corporate malfeasance. If executives have broken the law, an investments attorney may be able to recover damages.
If you have concerns about an investment or the manner in which a company is doing business, you may want to consult with an investments lawyer. An attorney can review your situation and make a personalized recommendation as to the course of action.
- Enron cooked the books and cost its shareholders $74 billion in losses.
- Lehman Brothers hid $50 billion in loans from its stockholders.
- AIG manipulated stock prices as part of a $3.9 billion fraud case.
When corporate officials get greedy, stockholders can end up losing a lifetime of savings.
Don’t stand by while someone else’s illegal or inappropriate behavior costs you money.
Let’s say, a corporate director does one of the following:
- Engages in insider trading
- Negotiates an unfavorable buyout
- Uses corporate assets for personal gains
Not only can those activities be illegal, but they can also result in lost assets and income for you.
As a stockholder, you have rights should that happen.
Corporate fraud attorneys work with affected shareholders to help them recover lost dollars. In some cases, class action lawsuits are able to recover millions or even billions.
Tyco paid $2.92 billion to investors after claims it inflated its income.
Waste Management paid a $475 million settlement after faking earnings.
WorldCom agreed to a $6.1 billion settlement in a class action suit brought by shareholders.
Was the value of your shares affected by accounting errors, corporate misdeeds or falsified records? You may want to talk to a corporate fraud attorney.
Don’t wait to find out if there is a way to recoup your losses.
Speak with an attorney today to find out how to exercise your legal rights.
Bernie Madoff conned investors out of $65 billion of their hard-earned money. While his Ponzi scheme may be one of the most notorious cases of fraud we’ve ever seen, Madoff is hardly the only financier who’s stolen money from clients.
Sunil Sharma was sentenced to 20 years in prison for running a $6 million Ponzi scheme from 2008-2014.
Alleged misconduct by stockbroker Gabriel Ramirez Jr. led to a $2.5 arbitration award for a Puerto Rican couple.
Morgan Stanley was ordered to pay $2.3 million after it was determined it allowed its brokers to mismanage investor money.
Stockbroker misconduct can take many forms. It may include:
- Unauthorized trading
- Failing to execute requested trades
- Selling unregistered securities
- Failing to act in your best interest
A stockbroker fraud attorney may be able to help you recover losses associated with broker misconduct. In some cases, you may not even have to go to court to win an award. Instead, an attorney may be able to help you file an arbitration claim with the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority.
Find out more by contacting a stockbroker fraud attorney and requesting a free consultation today.
Find a Whistleblower Attorney
Last year was a record year for whistleblower cases.
The federal government recovered $5.69 billion thanks to whistleblowers, and thepeople who tipped the government off to corporate bad behavior were entitled to up to 30 percent of that amount.
In 2014, whistleblowers were in line to receive up to $435 million.
Whether it’s cooking the books or skirting government regulations, dishonest businesses should be held responsible. Often, the government relies on whistleblowers to provide inside info to prove corporate wrongdoing.
In exchange for their help, whistleblowers have the right to take legal action that can results in awards of millions of dollars.
Awards in 2014 included the following:
- $167.7 million to whistleblowers who helped put a stop to Johnson & Johnson’s illegal promotion of off-label prescription drug use.
- $63.9 million to a JP Morgan informant who brought illegal mortgage underwriting practices to light.
- $26 million to Amedisys employees who alerted the government that the company was billing Medicare for medically unnecessary services.
Are you aware of illegal activities occurring at your company? Do you have insider information on corporate fraud?
Then you may want to talk to an attorney who specializes in whistleblower cases. Ask about the False Claims Act, and your rights under it.
The 10 Worst Corporate Accounting Scandals of All Time, http://www.accounting-degree.org/scandals/
The Largest Class Action Securities Settlements in History, https://www.battea.com/blog/largest-securities-class-action-settlements-history/
When a Million Dollar Stockbroker Goes Bad, The National Law Review, August 24, 2015,http://www.natlawreview.com/article/when-million-dollar-stockbroker-goes-bad
FINRA Hands Out $2.3 Million Judgement Against Morgan Stanley, Heidi Turner, LawyersandSettlements.com, August 18, 2015,http://www.lawyersandsettlements.com/articles/stockbroker_arbitration/stock-broker-fraud-arbitration-79-20851.html#.Vdx2epfYCFo
5 Years Ago Bernie Madoff Was Sentenced to 150 Years in Prison – Here’s How His Scheme Worked, Stephanie Yang, Business Insider, July 1, 2014, http://www.businessinsider.com/how-bernie-madoffs-ponzi-scheme-worked-2014-7
Day Trading Broker Steals More than $6 Million from Investors in Long-Running Ponzi Scheme, https://www.fbi.gov/sandiego/press-releases/2015/day-trading-broker-steals-more-than-6-million-from-investors-in-long-running-ponzi-scheme
Top payouts to federal false claims whistleblowers in fiscal year 2014, PBS Newshour,http://www.pbs.org/newshour/updates/fortune-fraud-top-5-biggest-payouts-federal-whistleblowers-2014/