The attorneys at Gana Weinstein LLP are investigating BrokerCheck records reports that Dean Robert Nowak (Nowak), currently employed by Newbridge Securities Corporation (Newbridge), has been subject to at least three customer complaints in his career. According to records kept by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), Nowak’s customer complaint alleges that Nowak made misrepresentations with respect to securities transactions to customers.
In April 2020, a customer complained that Nowak violated the securities laws by alleging that Nowak engaged in unsuitable investment practices and made misrepresentations and omissions regarding the features and risks of a fixed annuity and a real estate trust, including restrictions on liquidity and the applicable time horizon. The claim alleges $100,000 in damages and is currently pending.
Brokers are required under the securities laws to treat their clients fairly. This obligation includes the duties to disclose material risks of the investments they recommend and to present products, particularly complex or confusing products, in a fair and balanced manner that allows the client to evaluate the recommendation. Another important obligation advisors have is to make only suitable recommendations for investments to the client. There are many investments that are not appropriate for most investors or for certain investors given their risk tolerance, age, and other factors. Advisors should not present these investment options to clients. There are two screens that advisors must employ to determine whether an investment is suitable for a client. First, there must be a reasonable basis for the recommendation – meaning that the product has been investigated and due diligence conducted into the investment’s features, benefits, risks, and other relevant factors. The advisor must conclude that the investment is suitable for at least some investors and some securities may be suitable for no one. Second, the broker then must match the investment as being appropriate for the customer’s specific investment needs and objectives such as the client’s retirement status, long or short-term goals, age, disability, income needs, or any other relevant factor.
According to newsources, a study revealed that 7.3% of financial advisors had a customer complaint on their record when records from 2005 to 2015 were examined. Brokers must publicly disclose reportable events on their BrokerCheck reports that include customer complaints, IRS tax liens, judgments, investigations, terminations, and criminal cases. In addition, research has shown a disturbing pattern with troublesome brokers where brokers with high numbers of customer complaints are not kicked out of the industry but instead these brokers are sifted to lower quality brokerage firms with loose hiring practices and higher rates of customer complaints. These lower quality firms may average brokers with five times as many complaints as the industry average.
Nowak entered the securities industry in 1983. From September 1983 through May 1997, Nowak was registered with John Hancock Mutual Life Insurance Company. From September 1983 through May 2002, Nowak was also registered with Signator Investors, Inc. From April 2003 through July 2010, Nowak was registered with Summit Brokerage Services, Inc. From August 2010 through February 2011, Nowak was registered with Questar Captial Corporation. From May 2012 through August 2019, Nowak was registered with Taylor Capital Management Inc. Since August 2019, Nowak has been registered with and employed by Newbridge Securities Corporation, out of the firm’s Winter Park, Florida office location.
Investors who have suffered losses are encouraged to contact us at (800) 810-4262 for consultation. At Gana Weinstein LLP, our attorneys are experienced representing investors who have suffered securities losses due to the mishandling of their accounts. Claims may be brought in securities arbitration before FINRA. Our consultations are free of charge and the firm is only compensated if you recover.