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MML Investors Services Broker Suspended by FINRA for Forging Customer’s Signature

Eric Ott, a broker formerly registered with MML Investors Services, LLC, submitted a Letter of Acceptance, Waiver, and Consent (AWC) in which he consented to, but did not admit to or deny, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority’s (FINRA) findings that he forged a customer’s signature on life insurance applications without the customer’s knowledge or consent.

According to FINRA, Eric Eugene Ott, of Union Kentucky, discussed the possibility of his customer applying for life insurance, but had not gotten her consent or approval to submit the applications.  Mr. Ott, however, allegedly signed the customer’s name to the applications and paid the initial premiums without the customer’s knowledge.  The customer became aware of the fraudulently obtained insurance policies only when she received correspondence from the issuing company, whereupon she called to complain.

For violating FINRA Rule 2010, which requires FINRA members to observe high standards of commercial honor, FINRA assessed a deferred fine of $15,000 and suspended him for 13 months.  The suspension is in effect from April 17, 2017 through May 16, 2018.

Stockbrokers, registered representatives, and other financial industry professionals have been known to engage in many types of fraudulent and unlawful behavior, such as forgery of documents and/or unauthorized transfers of funds, which violate industry rules and procedures.  In order to protect investors from such misconduct, FINRA rules require broker-dealers to establish and implement a reasonable supervisory system.  The implementation of the rules requires supervisors to monitor employees to ensure they comply with federal and state securities laws, securities industry rules and regulations, as well as the brokerage firm’s own policies and procedures.  If broker-dealers and their supervisors do not establish and implement these protective measures, they may be liable to account holders for losses flowing from the misconduct.  Therefore, investors who have suffered losses stemming from account document falsifications and/or forgery by their broker can bring forth claims to recover damages against broker-dealers, like MML Investors Services, which should consistently oversee its brokers’ activities in order to prevent the above-described prohibited conduct.

Have you suffered losses in your MML Investors Services account due to forged documents and/or unauthorized activity by your broker?  If so, call Robert Pearce at the Law Offices of Robert Wayne Pearce, P.A. for a free consultation.  Mr. Pearce is accepting clients with valid claims against MML Investors Services stockbrokers who may have engaged in misconduct and caused investors losses.

The most important of investors’ rights is the right to be informed!  This Investors’ Rights blog post is by the Law Offices of Robert Wayne Pearce, P.A., located in Boca Raton, Florida.  For over 35 years, Attorney Pearce has tried, arbitrated, and mediated hundreds of disputes involving complex securities, commodities and investment law issues.  The lawyers at our law firm are devoted to protecting investors’ rights throughout the United States and internationally!  Please visit our website, www.secatty.com, post a comment, call (800) 732-2889, or email Mr. Pearce at pearce@rwpearce.com for answers to any of your questions about this blog post and/or any related matter.