SOURCE: Speyer Law

December 07, 2010 12:45 ET

Take Stock in 2011: Former NASD Attorney of Speyer Law Offers Tips to Protect Investments

PHILADELPHIA, PA and MIAMI, FL--(Marketwire - December 7, 2010) -  The recent headlines are ugly: "Madoff Investor Sues SEC To Recover Millions Lost In Scam"; "An Insurance Broker Scams Money From The Elderly"; "Man Pleads Guilty To Swindling Investors Of Millions"; Larry Hagman, J.R. On "Dallas," Lost Millions At The Hands Of An Unscrupulous Broker.

On a daily basis, securities fraud is front page news. But it's not just about headlines. The people behind the bold typeface are robbed of their nest eggs, saved over decades or a lifetime.

"Fraud has become such a big concern that FINRA (Financial Industry Regulatory Authority) recently released a free DVD about it," says Debra Speyer, managing partner of Speyer Law which specializes in securities fraud. "The headlines demonstrate just how pervasion and devastating investment fraud is for large and small investors alike. Investors trust advisers to keep their interests in the forefront. But that's not always the case."

Speyer should know. Formerly with the enforcement division of NASD (now the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority [FINRA]), today she has a law practice focused on helping people recover their money after they've been deceived.

So how do investors know if they are the victims of investment fraud? Look at your 2010 statements, Speyer says, and ask the following questions:

  • Did the broker ask about your investment objectives or discuss your risk tolerance? Then did he follow your objectives and recommend a plan that met them?
  • Are there investments on your statements that you did not authorize?
  • Did your statements include multiple purchases and sales every month?
  • Did your broker purchase investments on margin without your permission?
  • Did your planner neglect to adequately explain an investment?
  • Did the investment continue to plummet even when the broker assured you it was a conservative or low-risk investment?
  • Did you read -- and understand -- the account forms you signed?

An attorney with experience representing investors can help you determine if you have a solid case against your brokerage firm. Just don't wait to make the call. "Some states have statute of limitations that will limit the amount of time that you can bring a claim, and FINRA, the organization that administers the arbitration program, limits the time you can bring a claim as well," Speyer notes.

About Debra G. Speyer
Debra Speyer is a securities litigator with a national securities law practice. Before going into private practice in 1990, Debra was an attorney with the Enforcement Division of the National Association of Securities Dealers (NASD) prosecuting unscrupulous brokers for investment fraud and regulatory violations.

Debra is frequently quoted in periodicals such as Newsweek, Kiplinger's, USA Today, US News & World Report, Arrive, Philadelphia Inquirer and Newsday. Debra is a lecturer for the Pennsylvania Bar Institute and Pennsylvania Securities Commissioner on the subject of securities fraud. She is listed in Philadelphia Magazine's Best Lawyers issue for her work handling securities fraud. She is also listed in Who's Who in American Law and Who's Who in America. She was honored by the National Organization of Women Business Owners with the "Women Making History" award. She has appeared on several national television programs as an advocate helping people to keep their investments safe.

Debra is licensed to practice law in Pennsylvania, Maryland, Connecticut, New York, Florida and Washington, D.C., and she is also a member of the British bar. She is a member of American Bar Association and the Public Investors Arbitration Bar Association. Please visit www.wallstreetfraud.com or www.speyerlaw.com.

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