Category Archives: UIT (Unit Investment Trust)

Mark Tauzin-Former LPL Financial Broker-Discloses Regulatory Event, Customer Dispute & Termination-Lafayette, LA

February 2019- Lafayette, LA

According to publicly available records Mark Tauzin   (CRD#1716373) ,  a  currently unregistered stockbroker who was last  registered with LPL Financial disclose a regulatory event , a prior customer dispute and a termination from employment.

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 10/2016 Tauzin consented  to FINRA sanctions and to the entry of findings that he engaged in a pattern of unsuitable short-term trading of front-loaded Unit Investments Trusts (UITs) in  accounts of households that were customers of his member firm.  Tauzin had no reasonable basis to believe the short-term trading of these front products was suitable for the customers according to FINRA.   The finding stated that Tauzin also maintained blank forms signed by customers relating to accounts for several households.  The forms included Automated Clearing House (ACH) authorization forms, margin agreements, account applications and switch disclosure forms.   With regards to certain households, completed switch disclosure forms.   With regards to certain households, completed switch disclosure forms were used for transactions that appeared identical to the signed, blank forms maintained in Tauzin’s files.  The maintenance of the blank forms violated the firm’s written supervisory procedures, document, regardless of client knowledge or consent.    Tauzin was suspended for  8 months  and  agreed to disgorge  $205,115, and pay a penalty of $20,000.

In August of 2015 an LPL Financial customer alleged unsuitability, misrepresentations and unauthorized trading in connection with her UIT investments.    The case settled for $750,000.

Tauzin was employed with LPL Financial from September 2009  to November 2014 when was discharged by LPL Financial after allegations that he f violated the firm’s document signature policy and concerns regarding short-term UIT Trading..  He previously was employed with Raymond James & Associates, Inc., Inc.

If you have questions about an investment account handled by Mark Tauzin, contact us for a no charge consultation to learn about your legal options.

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

Tom Brolle Investigation-Former Morgan Stanley Broker-Newton, PA

May 2018-Newton, PA

According to FINRA records, Bruce Thomas Brolle ,  a stockbroker who is not currently registered with any broker dealerdiscloses a pending customer dispute.

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 May 2018 a customer of Morgan Stanley filed FINRA case 18-01665 alleging unsuitability with respect to investments made from June 2007-December 2016. The pending claim seeks damages of $562,086.

We are investigating  Brolle  on behalf of a retired couple who allege that they have suffered losses as a result of  unsuitable investments in energy, biotech and precious metals, including but not limited to:

  • Breitburn Energy Partners, L.P.
  • Seadrill, Ltd.
  • NRG Yield
  • Vanguard Natural Resources
  • Goldman Sachs MLP Energy Terraform Global
  • Crescent Point Energy
  • Celldex Therapeutics 
  • First Trust Precious Metals unit investment trusts

Thomas Brolle  was employed by Morgan Stanley from 6/2009-11/2016. From 11/2016-12/2017 he was employed by Purshe Kaplan Sterling Investments. He operates Brolle Wealth Management in Newton, PA.

If you have questions about an account handled by Bruce Thomas “Tom” Brolle, call for a no charge consultation to discuss your legal options.

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

Mason W. Gann-Former Berthel Fisher Broker-Subject of Customer Dispute Over Account Losses-Dallas, TX

January 2019- Dallas, TX

The FINRA records of Mason W. Gann, a stockbroker who is not currently registered with any broker dealer and who was last employed by Berthel Fisher and Co. , disclose a recent regulatory event resulting in suspension, a currently pending customer dispute, 2 prior customer disputes , a termination from employment and an outstanding tax 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 April 2018, FINRA suspended Mason Gann for 20 business days and fined him $5,000 to resolve allegations that he exercised discretion in six customers’ accounts without obtaining written approval from the customers or his firm.

In January 2018 a customer of Berthel Fisher filed a complaint seeking damages of $75,000 alleging concern about being able to support his future income requirements alleging that investments in his account are unsuitable for his risk level and alleging that Gann made unauthorized trades and churned  his account. The investments at issue are equities, options, unit investment trusts and ETFs.

Gann was employed with Berthel Fisher since 6/2012. In February 2018, Gann was discharged by Berthel Fisher who made the following allegation on Gann’s BrokerCheck report: “Terminated for possible violation of terms of heightened supervision”. 

Gann discloses an outstanding judgment/lien in favor of the Internal Revenue Service in the amount of $54,157.

If you have losses in an account handled by Mason Gann contact us for a no charge consultation to learn how you may be able to recover damages through FINRA arbitration.

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

National Toll Free: 877-224-3199

Florida-561 391 1900 

Texas-512-329-2870

Richard Shotz-Former Morgan Stanley Broker-Suspended by Regulator for Sale of UITs-Daytona Beach, FL

March 2018- Daytona Beach, Florida

The FINRA records of  Richard Alan Shotz  ,  a  stockbroker who was last employed by  Wells Fargo and Morgan Stanley disclose a recent regulatory matter resulting in his suspension.

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 January 2018, to resolve allegations that while he was employed by Morgan Stanley he engaged in an unsuitable pattern of short term trading of unit investment trusts (UITs) in customer accounts,  Richard Shotz was suspended for four months (2/20/2018-6/19/2018 and fined $7,500. FINRA Case 2015048039501.

The FINRA findings stated that in connection with 486 accounts Shotz repeatedly recommended that the customers purchase UITs then sell the products before their maturity dates. Most of the UITs he recommended had maturity dates of 24 months but were only held an average of 143 days. Shotz recommendations caused the customers to incur unnecessary sales charges and were unsuitable in light of the frequency and cost of the transactions.

In March 2018 Maryland securities regulators revoked Shotz’s registration.

Shotz has been employed by Wells Fargo since 10/2015. Prior to that he was with Morgan Stanley.

If you have losses in UITs purchased upon the recommendation or other questions about an account  handled by Richard Shotz call for a no charge consultation to discuss your options.

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

Christopher Hickman-Former Cetera Advisors Broker-Discloses a Regulatory Event, 7 Customer Disputes -Delray Beach, FL

February 2018- Delray Beach, FL

According to publicly available records  Christopher Hickman. (CRD#3267599) a stockbroker who is not currently registered, and who last was employed by Cetera Advisors , disclose a regulatory event and  seven customer disputes.

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 June of 2017 FINRA entered into an agreement with Christopher Hickman resulting in a $115,989.75 fine and a five month suspension.   According to the agreement with FINRA:  “Without admitting or denying the findings, Hickman consented to the sanctions and to the entry of findings that he engaged in an unsuitable pattern of short-term trading of unit investment trusts (UITs) in six customer accounts.   The findings stated that Hickman repeatedly recommended that the customers purchase UITs and the sell these products within a year of purchase.  The UITs that Hickman recommended had maturity dates of 24 months or longer and carried sales charges of up to 3.95%.   Nevertheless, on dozens of occasions, Hickman recommended that his customers sell their UIT positions less than a year after purchase.   Indeed the average holding period for the UITs purchased in these six customers’ accounts was just 136 days. In addition, on several occasions Hickman recommended that his customers use the proceeds from the short-term sale of a UIT to purchase another UIT with similar or even identical investment objectives.   As a result of these transactions the six customers at issue suffered losses of approximately $115,989.75.”

Prior customer settlements include:

  • FINRA Case 17-1056- In 1/2018 a customer of Cetera Advisors was paid $150,000 to resolve allegations that Hickman was negligent and allegations of elder abuse.
  • FINRA Case 09-05733-  filed by a customer of his former employer, Banc of America,  alleged unsuitable investments and unauthorized trading.   The case was settled for $75,000.
  • FINRA Case 09-05493- a Banc of America Investment Services customer filed a dispute alleging that trading in the account was not suitable for the client and that misrepresentations were made regarding her investments.    The case settled for $650,000.

Hickman was been  employed with Cetera Advisors  from 9/2009-7/2015. Hickman discloses a business affiliation with Premier Client Investments in Delray Beach, FL.

If you have losses in an account handled by Christopher Hickman, contact us to discuss your options.

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.

International Representation

Rex Securities Law

TollFree: 877-224-3199

Florida-561 391 1900 

Texas-512-329-2870