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Aidikoff, Uhl & Bakhtiari
Securities Arbitration & Litigation
Securities Arbitration & Litigation


Aidikoff, Uhl & Bakhtiari partner Ryan Bakhtiari to speak at 2017 Practicing Law Institute Securities Arbitration program

Aidikoff, Uhl & Bakhtiari partner Ryan Bakhtiari has been invited to participate as a speaker at the 2017 Practicing Law Institute (PLI) conference program on Wednesday, September 27, 2017. Mr. Bakhtiari’s panel is titled “Preparation for Expungement Hearings in Securities Arbitration.” This discussion will include topics, issues and procedures involved in arbitrating expungement matters.
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Barclays to Pay $97 Million for Overcharging Clients

The Securities and Exchange Commission today announced an enforcement action requiring Barclays Capital to refund advisory fees or mutual fund sales charges to clients who were overcharged.

In a settlement of more than $97 million, Barclays agreed to settle three sets of violations that resulted in clients being overbilled by nearly $50 million. The SEC’s order finds that two Barclays advisory programs charged fees to more than 2,000 clients for due diligence and monitoring of certain third-party investment managers and investment strategies when in fact these services weren’t being performed as represented. Barclays also collected excess mutual fund sales charges or fees from 63 brokerage clients by recommending more expensive share classes when less expensive share classes were available. Another 22,138 accounts paid excess fees to Barclays due to miscalculations and billing errors by the firm.
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Rave Reviews for Straus Institute’s Top Rated Investor Advocacy Clinic

In 2010, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) Investor Education Foundation awarded Pepperdine University School of Law’s Straus Institute for Dispute Resolution a grant to establish a comprehensive clinical education program in investor advocacy. The Clinic represents all of its clients on a pro-bono basis. The Investor Advocacy Clinic is the only FINRA funded Clinic to win every arbitration case tried by the Clinic and no FINRA funded Clinic has had more wins or recovered more money for its clients. The Investor Advocacy Clinic is also is the only FINRA funded Clinic to have produced back-to back First Place winners in the national James E. Beckley Student Writing Competition sponsored by the Public investor Bar Association. Director <strong>Robert A. Uhl</strong> and Associate Director Judith Hale Norris supervise the Investor Advocacy Clinic.
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Oppenheimer Orchestrates Management Shift in Los Angeles

Richard Wisely, who has managed Oppenheimer & Co.’s shifting fortunes as manager of its Los Angeles-area office under several ownership structures, has stepped aside, a spokeswoman said.

Wisely, who has been with Oppenheimer & Co. and predecessor companies since 1984, is handing the reins of the New York-based firm’s approximately 50-broker office in Westwood office to Kevin F. Friedman, who joined as a producing manager from running Wells Fargo Advisors’ Woodland Hills branch.
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FINRA to Seek Expedited Small Claim Arbitration via Phone

Parties involved in FINRA arbitration with claims of $50,000 or less may soon get the option of an expedited, time-limited hearing via phone, according to a status report released Feb. 8.

The proposed Special Proceeding for Simplified Arbitration was based on a recommendation by the FINRA Dispute Resolution Task Force to develop an intermediate form of adjudication for small claims. Proceedings would be limited to two sessions, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority said. FINRA's next step is to file the proposal with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
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FINRA Dispute Resolution Issues Status Report on Arbitration Task Force Recommendations

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) today released a status report on the recommendations made in the FINRA Dispute Resolution Task Force’s Final Report issued in December 2015. FINRA has discussed all of the task force recommendations with the National Arbitration and Mediation Committee (NAMC). FINRA has taken action on 35 of the 51 recommendations; 16 are pending.
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Morgan Stanley Financial Advisor Barry Connell Arrested for Stealing more than $5 million from Client Accounts

On January 3, 2017, Preet Bharara, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, and William F. Sweeney Jr., the Assistant Director-in-Charge of the New York Field Office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (“FBI”), announced that former Morgan Stanley financial advisor Barry Connell had been arrested and charged with wire fraud and aggravated identity theft for allegedly using his position as a financial adviser at Morgan Stanley to defraud multiple clients out of at least $5 million over a one-year period.
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Private Banking Meets Cross-Selling for JPMorgan’s Wealthy Clients

Salespeople of all stripes know the drill. Go to the morning pump-up sessions. Hit the revenue targets. Move product or move along.

The playbook for selling everything from phones to time shares also crops up in a rarefied environment -- the Manhattan offices of JPMorgan Chase & Co.’s elite wealth-management unit. There, private bankers working with JPMorgan’s richest customers are encouraged to steer client assets into certain funds and instruments that generate rich fees for the bank, according to several former employees.
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S.E.C. Inertia on Paybacks Adds to Investor Harm

In August 2015, the S.E.C. struck a settlement with Citigroup over an exotic investment strategy involving municipal bonds that the bank sold to clients from 2002 to 2008.

When securities laws are broken and investors get hurt, the Securities and Exchange Commission often rides to the rescue, using its regulatory muscle to extract penalties that can be returned to victims.

But as a cadre of harmed Citigroup investors is learning, it is one thing to persuade a wrongdoer to pay reparations and quite another to disburse the money.
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Advisers spar with Wells Fargo over growth award bonus program

Two law firms are pursuing FINRA arbitration claims on behalf of former Wells Fargo advisers who say they were cheated out of their "growth award" bonuses.

The firms claim the bank engaged in patterns of conduct to deprive advisers of the bonus program it created to reward them for meeting revenue growth targets.
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