Erez Law is currently investigating former Feltl & Company financial advisor Lance Ziesemer (CRD# 2342087) regarding unsuitable recommendations regarding unit investment trusts (UITs). Ziesemer was registered with Feltl & Company in Wayzata, Minnesota from 2007 to 2016.
In September 2016, FINRA barred Ziesemer after he failed to respond to FINRA request for information. “Respondent failed to request termination of his suspension within three months of the date of the Notice of Suspension; therefore, he is automatically barred from association with any FINRA member in any capacity.”
In May 2016, Ziesemer consented to the sanctions and to the entry of findings that he “implemented a trading strategy and made unsuitable recommendations to customers to switch from unit investment trusts (UITs) to other UITs after holding the investments for a short time period. The findings stated that Ziesemer’s member firm’s procedures in place at the time required Ziesemer to obtain a “switch letter” signed by the customer before selling any UIT and purchasing another UIT that carried a sales charge. Although all of the customers’ short-term UIT trades fell into this category, Ziesemer failed to obtain switch letters for any of them. These short-term UIT transactions resulted in approximately $160,000 in combined net losses for the customers. In addition, the customers paid total commissions of $64,815 on these transactions, of which Ziesemer received $38,889.” According to the Acceptance, Waiver & Consent (AWC), Ziesemer was sanctioned to $7,500 in civil and administrative penalties and fines, disgorgements in the amount of $38,889, and he was suspended for three months from May to August 2016.
In December 2008, FINRA sanctioned Ziesemer to $5,000 in civil and administrative penalties and fines after allegation that he “settled away with two customers in an attempt to prevent them from filing a complaint,” without obtaining permission or authorization from his member firm. According to the AWC, Ziesemer was suspended from FINRA for 20 days from December 2008 to January 2009.
Ziesemer has been the subject of 10 customer complaints between 2007 and 2017, one of which was closed without action, according to his CRD report:
- April 2017. “The customer, who had worked with RR Ziesemer at a previous firm, began transferring over accounts in June 2007 to Felt and Company and terminated his relationship with RR in January 2016. The claim states the focus of the complaint will be alleged activity from 3/1/2011 till January 2016 and allegations include unauthorized trading, unsuitable trading, fraud, negligence, negligent misrepresentation and breach of contract.” The customer is seeking $50,000 in damages and the case is currently pending.
- November 2016. “The allegations include unsuitable trading, unauthorized trading, excessive trading, fraud, misrepresentation and selling away. The period when the activities leading to the allegations occurred was July 2007 to January 2016.” The customer is seeking $90,000 in damages and the case is currently pending.
- October 2016. “The customer, who had worked with RR Ziesemer at a previous firm, transferred over accounts in June 2007 to Felt and Company and terminated his relationship with RR in January 2016. Alleged activity occurred through various times during the period and allegations include unauthorized trading, unsuitable investments and fraud.” The customer is seeking $100,000 in damages and the case is currently pending.
- October 2016. “The allegations include unsuitable trading, unauthorized trading and excessive activity primarily involving UITs but also equities. The period in which the activities leading to the allegations occurred was December 2010 to January 2016.” The customer is seeking $98,854 in damages and the case is currently pending.
- July 2016. “The client transferred assets and opened an IRA at Feltl in 2011 and transferred out the account in June 2016. Allegations include unsuitable investments, excessive trading and excessive commissions.” The customer is seeking $60,000 in damages and the case is currently pending.
- June 2016. “The client alleges unsuitable investments, unauthorized trading, excessive trading and fraudulently trying to conceal the losses. It appears the period involved with the alleged activities were from 2007 to early 2016.” The customer sought $1 million in damages and the case was settled for $340,000.
- April 2016. “Claim slightly unclear but allegations of unsuitability and concentration of investments appear to be the biggest claims. The client seems mainly concerned about activity from August 2015 through January 2016 but actual investments may be prior to that period.” The customer is seeking $143,725 in damages and the case is currently pending.
- June 2013. “Client’s attorney alleges the following inappropriate conduct occurred (SP) during the time frame (July 2009 – September 2012) that Mr. Ziesemer was the rep of record for the account: unsuitable transactions, unauthorized trading, break point selling and misrepresentations regarding the solicitation status of a trade.” The client sought $242,801 in damages and the case was settled for $150,000.
- January 2013. “Unsuitability and excessive trading Customer alleges claims occurred (SP) within the time frame of April 2011 to April 2012.” The customer sought $87,000 in damages and the case was settled for $50,000.
Pursuant to FINRA Rules, member firms are responsible for supervising a broker’s activities during the time the broker is registered with the firm. Therefore, Feltl & Company may be liable for investment or other losses suffered by Ziesemer’s customers.
Erez Law represents investors in the United States for claims against former Feltl & Company financial advisor Lance Ziesemer regarding unsuitable recommendations regarding UITs. If you were a client of Feltl & Company or another firm, and have experienced investment losses, please call us at 888-840-1571 or complete our contact form for a free consultation. Erez Law is a nationally recognized law firm representing individuals, trusts, corporations and institutions in claims against brokerage firms, banks and insurance companies on a contingency fee basis.