In March 2017, Broker Richard Lucker (Lucker) was subject to a massive complaint alleging $14,447,501 in damages. Lucker is currently employed by Wells Fargo Clearing Services, LLC (Wells Fargo). According BrokerCheck the customer complained that there was a failure to supervise with respect to Lucker’s management of her account from 2011 to 2013. There are no other details provided as to which products or the type of trading activity that occurred that caused the losses complained of. The complaint is currently pending. The securities lawyers of Gana Weinstein LLP continue to investigate the customer complaint against Lucker.
Brokers have a responsibility treat investors fairly which includes obligations such as making only suitable investments for the client. In order to make a suitable recommendation the broker must meet certain requirements. First, there must be reasonable basis for the recommendation the product or security based upon the broker’s investigation and due diligence into the investment’s properties including its benefits, risks, tax consequences, and other relevant factors. 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, only about 7.3% of financial advisors have any type of disclosure event on their records among brokers employed from 2005 to 2015. Brokers must publicly disclose reportable events on their CRD customer complaints, IRS tax liens, judgments, investigations, and even criminal matters. However, studies have found that there are fraud hotspots such as certain parts of California, New York or Florida, where the rates of disclosure can reach 18% or higher. Moreover, according to the New York Times, BrokerCheck may be becoming increasing inaccurate and understate broker misconduct as studies have shown that 96.9% of broker requests to clean their records of complaints are granted.