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FINRA Suspends Former Robert W. Baird & Co. Broker for Unsuitable Investment Strategy

Jodie Ann LaMarre, of Sarasota, Florida, submitted a Letter of Acceptance, Waiver and Consent (AWC) to the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) for allegedly recommending an unsuitable investment strategy to an elderly customer on a fixed income with conservative investment goals, causing the customer to suffer unnecessary tax liability of over $33,000.

While employed with the Sarasota, Florida branch of Robert W. Baird & Co., Ms. LaMarre allegedly recommended the consolidation of all her elderly customer’s assets into a single taxable account.  According to FINRA, Ms. LaMarre made this recommendation without regard for the fact that several of the customer’s assets were in tax-deferred accounts.  FINRA’s findings state that Ms. LaMarre was aware of and understood the negative tax consequences of her unsuitable recommendations, which resulted in unnecessary tax liability of more than $33,000 and a reduction of her customer’s 2016 monthly social security benefit.

Without admitting or denying FINRA’s findings, Ms. LaMarre was assessed a deferred fine of $10,000, and was suspended from association with any FINRA member for one year.  The suspension is in effect from March 5, 2018 through March 4, 2019.

Stockbrokers have been known to engage in many practices that may be in violation of industry and firm rules, practices, and procedures.  In order to protect investors from stockbroker misconduct, FINRA rules require brokerage firms to establish and implement a supervisory system.  The implementation of these industry rules require supervisors to monitor their employees to ensure compliance with federal and state securities laws, securities industry rules and regulations, and the brokerage firm’s own policies and procedures.  If broker-dealers and/or their supervisors fail to establish and implement these protective measures, they may be liable to investors for damages which flow from the broker’s misconduct. Therefore, investors who have suffered losses stemming from unsuitable recommendations by their broker can bring forth claims to recover damages against broker-dealers, like Robert W. Baird & Co., which should consistently oversee its brokers’ activities in order to prevent the above-described misconduct.

Have you suffered losses in your Robert W. Baird & Co. account?  Did you suffer losses or tax consequences from a broker making unsuitable investment recommendations?  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 Robert W. Baird & Co. stockbrokers who may have engaged in stockbroker 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.