Be On The Lookout for These Types of Securites Fraud
Thousands of California investors are victims of investment or securities fraud every year. Federal and State securities laws provide remedies for defrauded investors but it’s wise to do your homework first so you don’t get caught in a fraud. The California securities fraud attorneys at Evans Law Firm, Inc. can represent you if you lose money as the result of any type of securities fraud here in California. If you have, call our securities fraud lawyers today at (415)441-8669. To help protect you from fraud, we want to offer a few ideas of what to look out for.
Investment or securities fraud comes in many varieties and from brokers, advisors, promoters, issuers and others. Some of the most frequent types of securities fraud are:
- Penny Stock Fraud. Micro-cap stocks have a long history of fraud, yet attract California investors every day. Penny stocks are particularly ripe for securities fraud because issuers typically other minimal information as the stocks fall below reporting requirements due to size and number of shareholders and trade with very low volume. Price manipulation through pump and dump schemes and bogus offerings are frequent. Avoid penny stocks if you do not have expertise with them.
- High-Yield Debt Offerings. These unregistered offerings often come from unverifiable sources and are supposedly backed by letters of credit or other guarantees. Avoid these unconventional offerings.
- Accounting Frauds. Think Enron and Worldcom here. Bull markets fuel creative accounting and inadequate disclosures and often regulators just can’t keep up. Study financials closely and consult professionals with nothing to gain from your purchase.
- Unlicensed Sales Agents. ALWAYS check a broker’s credentials and use the background search tools at investor.gov and https://brokercheck.finra.org/.
- Affinity Groups. Unscrupulous brokers and promoters often exploit the trust of church members, ethnic groups or seniors to sell a fraud, enrolling a leading member of the target group to encourage members of the group to invest.
- Stock Broker Fraud. Churning, unauthorized trades, unsuitable commission-driven recommendations and unexplained fees are risks. Always know the background of your broker and check your statements every month
- Promissory Notes. Avoid investing in short-term debt obligations. These notes offer above-market interest for a reason – they are extremely risky and your broker may not really understand what he or she is selling.
- Advance Fees. Advance fees may be requested from you to participate in some oil, gas or other commodity enterprise or the opportunity may involve an offshore bank or business. Regardless of the promise, the scheme is to get you to pay upfront for some investment opportunity that never comes.
- Offshore Investing. When your money leaves this country the laws that protect it do not follow. Avoid these offerings.
- Commodities. Coins, precious metals and gems and other commodities are very risky investments. The underlying commodity may not exist at all.
- Boiler Room Sales tactics. Avoid cold calls and pressure tactics that try to get you to make a quick decision on a stock or bond purchase.
- Ponzi Schemes. These swindles happen every day. Make sure you do your homework by background checks and consulting with professionals with nothing to gain from your investment to avoid these frauds.
SEC Whistleblower Program
Often, fraudulent securities schemes are brought to light by securities fraud whistleblowers. The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Whistleblower Program rewards whistleblowers with original information that leads to enforcement and recovery. Rewards can be 10-30% of the amount recovered, including penalties. If you have credible, original information of any type of securities fraud, call our SEC whistleblower and securities fraud lawyers today, and we can help organize your case for submission to the SEC or other appropriate agency. If you have information don’t just call a government agency as you might jeopardize your chances at a reward. Call counsel such as the whistleblower attorneys at Evans Law Firm first.
If you have been defrauded by a broker or advisor through securities fraud or have information that can lead to a whistleblower case, call Ingrid M. Evans and the other San Francisco and California securities fraud and whistleblower attorneys at Evans Law Firm, Inc. at (415) 441-8669, or by email at <a href=”mailto:email@example.com”>firstname.lastname@example.org</a>. Our attorneys have experience with securities and other investment fraud, financial elder abuse cases and complex qui tam or whistleblower cases including offshore tax avoidance cases, complex financial contract cases and cases against large insurance companies. We can help guide your case through a jury trial or toward an equitable settlement. We also handle cases involving physical elder abuse, nursing home abuse, whole life insurance and universal life insurance, and indexed, variable, and fixed annuities.