Category Archives: MLP (master Limited Partnership)

Scott V. Kaup-Former VSR Financial Services Broker-Discloses $1M+ Customer Dispute-Stuart, NE

April 2017-Stuart, NE

The FINRA records of  Scott V. Kaup ,  a  stockbroker who was formerly  employed by  VSR Financial Services  disclose a pending customer dispute involving alternative investments.

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) is the agency that licenses and regulates stockbrokers and brokerage firms. FINRA requires brokers and brokerage firms to report customer complaints and disputes as well as regulatory sanctions. In addition brokers are required to disclose certain financial matters such as personal bankruptcies, judgments and liens.

In currently pending FINRA Case 16-01088, a customer of VSR Financial Services alleges damages of between $1,000,000 and $5,000,000 for unsuitable recommendations, violation of common law fraud, breach of fiduciary duty and negligence for account activity between 3/2001-6/2010. The investments at issue are direct investments, &  limited partnership interests in oil and gas and real estate securities.

Kaup was employed by VSR FInancial Services from 10/1989-9/2016. He is currently employed by Summit Brokerage Services and discloses a business affiliation with Kaup’s Financial Advisors, Inc. 

VSR Financial Services was fined $550,000 by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) in May 2013 in connection with the sale of alternative investments . In their findings, FINRA criticised VSR Financial for recommending high concentration levels of alternative investments in customer accounts and for its lack of supervision over the use of consolidated reports prepared by brokers and provided to customers.

Alternative investments include non publicly traded real estate investment trusts (REITS) , hedge funds, real estate, commodities and derivatives contracts and, managed futures. These investments tend to be complex, illiquid, nontransparent, hard to value and expensive. Many of the alternative investments sold over recent years are not traded on any public market making them difficult to value and even more difficult to liquidate if cash is needed.

 VSR wound down operations at the end of 2016 and transferred most of their brokers and customer accounts to Summit Brokerage ServicesSee this for more information regarding VSR Financial Services.

If you have losses in an account in an account handled by Scott V. Kaup or another broker who was employed by VSR Financial Services , contact us to discuss how you may be able to recover damages for those losses.

Rex Securities Law , with offices in Boca Raton, FL,  and  Austin, TX,   provides representation to  investors  nationwide who are seeking recovery of investment losses due to the negligence or fraud of stockbrokers and broker dealers. If you have questions about how your account has been handled, call to speak with an experienced securities attorney.

Most cases handled on a contingent fee basis meaning that you do not pay legal fees unless we are successful.

Nationwide Representation

Rex Securities Law

TollFree: 877-224-3199

Florida-561 391 1900 

Texas-512-329-2870

Thomas W. Bodensteiner-Former VSR Financial Services Stockbroker-Discloses Customer Dispute Over UDF-Clear Lake, IA

April 2017-Clear Lake, IA

The FINRA records of  Thomas W. Bodensteiner ,  a  stockbroker who was formerly  employed by  VSR Financial Services  disclose a pending customer dispute over an investment in United Development Funding IV (UDF).

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) is the agency that licenses and regulates stockbrokers and brokerage firms. FINRA requires brokers and brokerage firms to report customer complaints and disputes as well as regulatory sanctions. In addition brokers are required to disclose certain financial matters such as personal bankruptcies, judgments and liens.

Bodensteiner , who operates Bodensteiner Investments  in Clear Lake, IA discloses that  FINRA arbitration 17-0314 was  filed by a VSR Financial Services customer in 2/2017. The customer alleges damages of $50,000 for unsuitability, negligence and misrepresentation related to the investment in United Development Funding IV.

The offices of UDF were raided by the FBI in 2016. See this for more information on United Development Funding. 

Bodensteiner was registered with VSR Financial Services from 10/2001-09/2016 and is currently registered with Summit Brokerage Services, a related entity .

VSR wound down operations at the end of 2016. See this for more information regarding VSR Financial Services.

VSR Financial Services was fined $550,000 by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) in May 2013 in connection with the sale of alternative investments similar to United Development Funding. In their findings, FINRA criticised VSR Financial for recommending high concentration levels of alternative investments in customer accounts and for its lack of supervision over the use of consolidated reports prepared by brokers and provided to customers.

Alternative investments include non publicly traded real estate investment trusts (REITS) , hedge funds, real estate, commodities and derivatives contracts and, managed futures. It may also include art, wine, antiques, coins or stamps. These investments tend to be complex, illiquid, nontransparent, hard to value and expensive. Many of the alternative investments sold over recent years are not traded on any public market making them difficult to value and even more difficult to liquidate if cash is needed.

If you have losses in an account in an account handled by Thomas W. Bodensteiner or another broker who was employed by VSR Financial Services , contact us to discuss how you may be able to recover damages for those losses.

Rex Securities Law , with offices in Boca Raton, FL,  and  Austin, TX,   provides representation to  investors  nationwide who are seeking recovery of investment losses due to the negligence or fraud of stockbrokers and broker dealers. If you have questions about how your account has been handled, call to speak with an experienced securities attorney.

Most cases handled on a contingent fee basis meaning that you do not pay legal fees unless we are successful.

Nationwide Representation

Rex Securities Law

TollFree: 877-224-3199

Florida-561 391 1900 

Texas-512-329-2870

Parks Brown, Jr.-Former VSR Financial Services Broker-Update on Investigation

December 2016- Marietta, Georgia

We continue our investigation of former VSR Financial Services broker Parks H. Brown, Jr. who operated  IM Portfolios, Inc.  in Marietta, Georgia,. Our client is of an elderly widow who alleges that Parks Brown recommended the purchase of numerous unsuitable investments resulting in significant losses to her retirement nest egg.

The investments include the following securities:

  • Exco Resources
  • Linn Energy
  • Rock Creek Pharma Inc.
  • Star Scientific, Inc. 

According to FINRA records Brown was registered with VSR Financial Services from 10/2005 until 7/2016.  As of December 5, 2016, Parks Brown is not currently registered with any brokerage firm.

Parks Brown was named in a FINRA arbitration in 2014 (#14-1744) by a VSR Financial Services customer who alleged unsuitable investments, churning, unauthorized trades and breach of fiduciary duty. That case was settled in 9/2015 for $71,500.

In 2001, Parks Brown, who at the time was working for A.G. Edwards,  was named in another arbitration ( NASD 01-1817) by a customer alleging unauthorized transactions, churning excessive concentration and violations of securities laws. A FINRA arbitration panel awarded  $229,839 to the customer.

VSR Financial’s Recent Regulatory Woes

NOVEMBER 2016-FINRA Censured and fined VSR Financial $400,000, required VSR pay restitution of $4.5 million and required that the firm conduct undertakings for supervisory failures related to the sale of annuity products.

MAY 2013- VSR Financial Services was fined $550,000 by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) in May 2013 in connection with the sale of alternative investments. In their findings, FINRA criticised VSR Financial for recommending high concentration levels of alternative investments in customer accounts and for its lack of supervision over the use of consolidated reports prepared by brokers and provided to customers.

Alternative investments include non publicly traded real estate investment trusts (REITS) , hedge funds, real estate, commodities and derivatives contracts and, managed futures. It may also include art, wine, antiques, coins or stamps. These investments tend to be complex, illiquid, nontransparent, hard to value and expensive. Many of the alternative investments sold over recent years are not traded on any public market making them difficult to value and even more difficult to liquidate if cash is needed.

If you have information you think may be helpful to our investigation, we would like to hear from you. If you have losses in an account handled by Parks Brown or losses in a VSR Financial Services account handled by another VSR broker , contact us to discuss how you may be able to recover damages for those losses.

Rex Securities Law , with offices in Boca Raton, FL,  and  Austin, TX,   provides representation to  investors  nationwide who are seeking recovery of investment losses due to the negligence or fraud of stockbrokers and broker dealers. If you have questions about how your account has been handled, call to speak with an experienced securities attorney.

Most cases handled on a contingent fee basis meaning that you do not pay legal fees unless we are successful.

Nationwide Representation

Rex Securities Law

TollFree: 877-224-3199

Florida-561 391 1900 

Texas-512-329-2870

Bryon E. Martinsen-Centaurus Financial Broker-Discloses $1.7M Customer Dispute

August 2016- Northport, NY

The FINRA records of  Bryon E. Martinsen,  a  stock broker who is currently employed by Centaurus Financial  disclose  a currently pending customer dispute, 4 prior customer disputes , a termination from employment and a currently outstanding judgment/lien.

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) is the agency that licenses and regulates stockbrokers and brokerage firms. FINRA requires brokers and brokerage firms to report customer complaints and disputes as well as regulatory sanctions. In addition brokers are required to disclose certain financial matters such as personal bankruptcies, judgments and liens.

In  currently pending FINRA Case# 16-02023 , a customer of Centaurus Financial  alleges damages of $1,787,000 and alleges that the firm allowed products to be sold that were both unsuitable and not fully reviewed during the due diligence process. The product types are direct investments, DPP and limited partnership interests.

Martinsen has been registered with Centaurus Financial since 10/1999. 

Rex Securities Law , with offices in Boca Raton, FL,  and  Austin, TX,   provides representation to  investors  nationwide who are seeking recovery of investment losses due to the negligence or fraud of stockbrokers and broker dealers. If you have questions about how your account has been handled, call to speak with an experienced securities attorney.

Most cases handled on a contingent fee basis meaning that you do not pay legal fees unless we are successful.

Nationwide Representation

Rex Securities Law

TollFree: 877-224-3199

Florida-561 391 1900 

Texas-512-329-2870

Will R. Freeman-Wilbanks Securities Broker-Discloses $1.4M Claim Over Loss on Aztec Oil & Gas

Oklahoma City, OK

The FINRA records of Will R. Freeman ,  a  stock broker who is currently  employed by Wilbanks Securities  disclose a pending customer dispute involving an oil and gas investment.

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) is the agency that licenses and regulates stockbrokers and brokerage firms. FINRA requires brokers and brokerage firms to report customer complaints and disputes as well as regulatory sanctions. In addition brokers are required to disclose certain financial matters such as personal bankruptcies, judgments and liens.

 

In pending FINRA arbitration 14-03350,  customers of Wilbanks Securities allege damages of $1,465,000 and that Freeman did not review the suitability of an oil and gas limited partnership with customers prior to its sale.

Aaron Wilbanks, President and CEO of Wilbanks Securities, Randy Wilbanks, its Vice President and Steven Sharpe, Chief Compliance Officer, disclose this same case (FINRA #14-0335) on their respective FINRA records, indicating that the subject oil and gas investment is Aztec Oil & Gas. See this for details.

Another Wilbanks Securities broker, John R. Stevens, is named in this arbitration and was discharged from Wilbanks Securities in April 2014. See this for details. 

Freeman has been employed by  Wilbanks Securities since 7/2006.

Rex Securities Law , with offices in Boca Raton, FL,  and  Austin, TX,   provides representation to  investors  nationwide who are seeking recovery of investment losses due to the negligence or fraud of stockbrokers and broker dealers. If you have questions about how your account has been handled, call to speak with an experienced securities attorney.

Most cases handled on a contingent fee basis meaning that you do not pay legal fees unless we are successful.

Nationwide Representation

Rex Securities Law

TollFree: 877-224-3199

Florida-561 391 1900 

Texas-512-329-2870

Will R. Freeman-Wilbanks Securities Broker-Discloses $1.4M Customer Dispute Over Oil Investment

August  2016-Oklahoma City, OK

The FINRA records of Will R. Freeman ,  a  stock broker who is currently employed by Wilbanks Securities, Inc.   disclose  a pending customer arbitration.

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) is the agency that licenses and regulates stockbrokers and brokerage firms. FINRA requires brokers and brokerage firms to report customer complaints and disputes as well as regulatory sanctions. In addition brokers are required to disclose certain financial matters such as personal bankruptcies, judgments and liens.

 

In currently pending FINRA Case 14-03350,  customers of Wilbanks Securities allege damages of $1,465,000 and that Freeman did not review the suitability of an oil and gas limited partnership with them prior to its sale.

Freeman has been employed by Wilbanks Securities since 7/2006.

The FINRA Suitability Rule

FINRA Rule 2111 requires, in part, that a broker-dealer or associated person “have a reasonable basis to believe that a recommended transaction or investment strategy involving a security or securities is suitable for the customer, based on the information obtained through the reasonable diligence of the [firm] or associated person to ascertain the customer’s investment profile.” In general, a customer’s investment profile would include the customer’s age, other investments, financial situation and needs, tax status, investment objectives, investment experience, investment time horizon, liquidity needs and risk tolerance. The rule also explicitly covers recommended investment strategies involving securities, including recommendations to “hold” securities. The rule, moreover, identifies the three main suitability obligations: reasonable-basis, customer-specific, and quantitative suitability.

For more on the FINRA suitability rule, follow this link. 

Rex Securities Law , with offices in Boca Raton, FL,  and  Austin, TX,   provides representation to  investors  nationwide who are seeking recovery of investment losses due to the negligence or fraud of stockbrokers and broker dealers. If you have questions about how your account has been handled, call to speak with an experienced securities attorney.

Most cases handled on a contingent fee basis meaning that you do not pay legal fees unless we are successful.

Nationwide Representation

Rex Securities Law

TollFree: 877-224-3199

Florida-561 391 1900 

Texas-512-329-2870

L. M. Kohn Broker Charles J. Ehnot Settles Oil Master Limited Partnership Case

July 2016- Dunmore, PA

The FINRA records of Charles J. Ehnot , a stock broker employed by L.M. Kohn & Company, disclose  29 prior customer disputes that have been settled. See this for details. 

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) is the agency that licenses and regulates stockbrokers and brokerage firms. FINRA requires brokers and brokerage firms to report customer complaints and disputes as well as regulatory sanctions. In addition brokers are required to disclose certain financial matters such as personal bankruptcies, judgments and liens.

In FINRA Case 15-1261, which was resolved recently, a customer  of L. M. Kohn alleged damages of $160,000 for losses incurred on master limited partnerships in the oil industry. That case was settled for $49,750.

Ehnot has been employed by L.M. Kohn since 1/2012. Prior to that he was employed by Midsouth Capital.

If you have losses in an account handled by Charles J. Ehnot, you may be able to collect damages from his former employer.

Rex Securities Law , with offices in Boca Raton, FL,  and  Austin, TX,   provides representation to  investors  nationwide who are seeking recovery of investment losses due to the negligence or fraud of stockbrokers and broker dealers. If you have questions about how your account has been handled, call to speak with an experienced securities attorney.

Most cases handled on a contingent fee basis meaning that you do not pay legal fees unless we are successful.

Nationwide Representation

Rex Securities Law

TollFree: 877-224-3199

Florida-561 391 1900 

Texas-512-329-2870