Auction Rate Securities Fiasco

Filing Complaints with Regulators / Participating in Class Actions

We receive many questions from investors regarding the above “options”. This is what we have to say regarding these so called options.

Filing complaints with congress, FINRA, SEC or State Regulator is nice, but you should not rely on that to get you a dime. Mr Meissner was one of those regulators and worked in the field for years working with all these govt and quasi gov’t agencies etc – Their aim generally is to sanction, suspend or fine firms/brokers – in general with some rare exception they do not get you your funds – don’t be fooled. For example during the whole investment banking / analyst conflict of interest investigation 2002-2003 (Blodget etc) the regulators did not get a dime back for individual investors – they did obtain fines which went to these agencies and some to create arbitration clinics in law schools as well as investor education programs run by the very industry that caused the problem – but not a dime to individual investors. The only investors who obtained reimbursement were those who hired qualified arbitration counsel and filed arbitration claims after careful screening and review of each investor’s particular facts. We know this because we were there – we were one of the arbitration firms who assisted investors with regard to that securities issue of the day and recovered large sums on behalf of investors after properly screening our cases as we do with all our cases, unlike many other “Mill” law firms who simply sign retainers and move full speed ahead rushing to file claims so they can state we have filed X claims, hurting their clients in the process, just as we know many firms are doing now, as they did then.

Meanwhile here is the link to the results of those regulatory investigations by the same regulators after years of investigating:

http://www.sec.gov/news/press/2003-54.htm – No Recovery for investors with the regulators just fines etc.

While at the same here is one of my well reported case involving Merrill Lynch 88% recovery from such research issue – Our clients were much happier than those that simply filed a complaint with regulators. True hiring the wrong arbitration attorney could be just as bad as doing any of these other things as most lost those cases unlike our firm as they did not know how to present such cases[1].

https://www.smeissner.com/February242005MoneyMorningstar88RecoveryMerrillLynch.htm

As for Class Action: This is what happened to all the class actions (and there were many) filed that we know of (Dismissal), putting aside the issue of what pennies on the dollar one actually receives in class actions (other than the law firm) if one gets passed dismissal (and you cannot participate in a class action and then pursue arbitration – you must opt out).

http://www.techlawjournal.com/topstories/2005/20050120.asp

Don’t be fooled – look back at history if you want to know the best way to proceed.

Investors should also be aware that postings on blogs can be discoverable if you bring a claim depending on the arbitration panel, so be careful what you write. Also accepting the suggested loans or margin can be like making a deal with the devil – I do not suggest anyone do that without proper legal and financial counsel same is true with regard to not selling your securities when and if your brokerage gives you an opportunity to even at a significant discount (loss) – get counsel before you reject such option if it arises.

The information contained herein is not legal advice and should not be relied upon as legal advice. Any attorney-client relationship can only be established after all potential conflicts of interest may be developed, after careful consideration of the all the relevant facts that may pertain to your particular claims or claims, and a written fee agreement is entered into.