Merrill Takes Fired Ohio Broker to Court in Non-Solicitation Dispute
Ex-Merrill Lynch Financial Advisors Fight Back in Court and Claim Victory
LPL Puts Teeth Into Penalties for Sales Practice Violations
A team from Matasar Jacobs, led by Mark Jacobs, obtained summary judgment against Blue Star Productions, LLC, which had leased parking lots to produce events during the Republican National Convention. Matasar Jacobs represented the property owner and manager. Just weeks before the Convention, without notice, Blue Star moved the events to another venue and refused to pay amounts still owed to our clients.
Blue Star creatively argued that its own refusal to purchase insurance rendered its contract null and void. Blue Star even asserted a counterclaim to recover a $50,000 deposit it already paid. Acting quickly to address Blue Star’s default, Matasar Jacobs filed suit before the Convention began and then pursued a broad and efficient discovery strategy focused on producing a positive result without the need for trial. As a result of Matasar Jacobs proactively addressing the novel real estate issues presented in the case, the Court awarded summary judgment in favor the firm’s clients for $111,045 and fully dismissed Blue Star’s counterclaims.
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Some recent executive orders setting wheels in motion for deregulation in financial services may be the harbinger of regulatory relief that financial institutions have longed for since the inception of the Dodd-Frank Act.
Matasar Jacobs has successfully concluded its defense of a registered representative from Connecticut in connection with disciplinary proceedings brought against him by FINRA’s Enforcement Department. FINRA had accused our client of having improperly sold senior investors alternative investments in vehicles such as REITs and BDCs, and of having submitted inaccurate applications on the investors’ behalf so they could qualify for the purchases.
Following FINRA’s extensive investigation, including a full day interrogating our client under oath, FINRA sought to have the client permanently barred from the securities industry. However, after aggressive advocacy on behalf of our client, Matasar Jacobs attorney Scott Matasar negotiated his sanction down to a one year suspension, and persuaded FINRA not to impose any monetary fine.
Matasar Jacobs LLC attorneys Scott Matasar and Shipra Kumar have prevailed as defense counsel in FINRA arbitration brought by a disgruntled customer against LPL Financial and one of its financial advisors. Following multiple days of testimony, including a witness who testified telephonically from Japan, the arbitration Panel denied the customer’s $400,000 damage claim in its entirety. A copy of the arbitration Award may be found here.
Ohio Super Lawyers Magazine, a division of Thompson Reuters, has released its 2017 ratings of the most qualified lawyers in the state. For the third consecutive year Matasar Jacobs LLC member Scott Matasar has been recognized as one of the top 50 lawyers in the city of Cleveland, and among the top 100 lawyers for the entire state of Ohio. Super Lawyers is a rating service of outstanding lawyers from more than 70 practice areas who have attained a high-degree of peer recognition and professional achievement. Matasar’s nomination to these lists was the result of a selection process that included independent research, peer nominations and peer evaluations from fellow lawyers in Cleveland and across Ohio.
Former Wells Fargo employees tell NPR that managers at the bank retaliated against them for calling the company’s ethics line and pushing back against reckless sales practices.
Matasar Jacobs represented a Wisconsin-based financial advisor in a FINRA inquiry regarding the advisor’s unauthorized transmission of client investment newsletters in violation of his firm’s compliance policies and applicable FINRA rules. Following the firm’s submission of a detailed written legal analysis advocating for leniency on behalf of the client, FINRA terminated its inquiry and issued the advisor a Cautionary Action Letter that does not have to be reported on his Form U4.
Matasar Jacobs has defeated a lawsuit filed in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Tennessee against a financial services client accused of having violating the federal Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organization Act and of having committed fraud, conversion and breach of fiduciary duty in connection with the alleged malfeasance in administering several connected trusts. In a fourteen page written decision, U.S. District Judge Ronnie Greer found the Plaintiffs had failed to meet their burden of presenting even the necessary baseline allegations to support a RICO claim, and dismissed the claim with prejudice, barring the Plaintiffs from attempting to re-file that portion of the case. A copy of the Memorandum Opinion and Order can be found here.
The securities industry’s self-funded watchdog is moving forward with a rule to bump up the number of arbitrators available to be selected for panels judging claims against brokers.
Scott Matasar provides continued analysis of the new DOL Fiduciary Rule in the latest article from Crain’s Cleveland Business.
After two years of warnings, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority has become ferocious about pursuing and sanctioning brokers who fail to report tax liens, bankruptcies and other “disclosable” events quickly and accurately on their Form U4s
Scott Matasar provides analysis of the new DOL Fiduciary Rule in this recent article from Crain’s Cleveland Business.
Scott Matasar spoke at the Jewish Federation of Cleveland’s 44th Annual Charitable Tax Seminar on June 1, discussing the effect of the DOL Fiduciary Rule, FINRA enforcement/examination priorities, and enforcement priorities.
Matasar Jacobs represented a Midwest-based financial advisory firm in an inquiry conducted by FINRA regarding the firm’s business model and advisory methodologies. The representation involved analyzing the firm’s records and representing the firm’s managing member during a full day of sworn testimony before FINRA investigators and attorneys in proceedings held in FINRA’s Chicago office. Following the sworn testimony, the matter was resolved with FINRA closing the inquiry and issuing the managing principal a Cautionary Action letter that is not a reportable event for regulatory purposes.
Kumar has joined the firm as an associate attorney, serving the firm’s financial services and business litigation practices.
Scott Matasar and Mark Jacobs, former partners at two of the Midwest’s largest and most prominent law firms, have come together to launch Matasar Jacobs LLC. The new law firm will serve the litigation, regulatory, and transactional needs of publicly-traded and privately-held businesses and individuals engaged in a range of market segments and industries, including securities, financial services, private equity and real estate.