If you’re seeking justice and compensation for losses stemming from investment fraud, Erez Law PLLC can help. We have successfully secured over $200 million for victims of financial misrepresentation and fraud, reflecting our dedication and proficiency in this challenging field. We have also achieved national recognition for our extensive experience handling FINRA arbitration cases, a testament to our deep understanding of the complexities of securities fraud disputes.
If you’ve been impacted by investment fraud or want to know more about your rights if you are a victim of NorthStar Financial Services investment misrepresentation, Erez Law offers a free consultation to evaluate your case. Our seasoned team can provide the guidance and support you need to pursue financial recovery. Contact us now to learn more.
Background on NorthStar Financial Services
NorthStar Financial Services Bermuda has experienced significant legal turmoil and declared bankruptcy in recent years. Originating in Bermuda, NorthStar offered a range of investment products, often targeting non-US residents located in Latin America and Asia. However, the company’s stability came into question following its acquisition by Global Bankers Insurance Group, owned by Greg Lindberg. This acquisition marked the beginning of NorthStar’s financial issues.
The liquidation proceedings of NorthStar Financial Services Bermuda began after serious concerns surfaced about the company’s financial health and management practices. These proceedings drew considerable attention due to the involvement of large firms like SunTrust Investment Services/Truist and Cetera Advisors/Cetera Investment Services. These firms were among those that had sold NorthStar products to their clients. The liquidation raised questions about their due diligence and compliance practices.
As the liquidation unfolded, regulatory bodies and investors scrutinized the roles of these firms. Investigations into the activities of SunTrust Investment Services/Truist and Cetera Advisors/Cetera
Investment Services sought to determine the extent of their knowledge about NorthStar’s precarious financial situation. The main concern was whether these firms were aware of the risks associated with NorthStar’s products and if they had adequately informed their clients about these risks.
Signs of Misrepresentation and Fraud in NorthStar Financial Services
The NorthStar Financial Services case is a stark example of the dangers of unsuitable investments, material misrepresentation, broker misconduct, and lack of diversification. It highlights the necessity for broker advisors to uphold ethical standards and transparency in their practices. Below are some examples of the types of red flags that indicated misrepresentation and fraud in the case of NorthStar Financial Services:
Unsuitable Investment Recommendations
One of the primary concerns was the recommendation of unsuitable investments. Brokers, driven by commissions or other incentives, advised their clients to make high-risk investments without considering the clients’ financial goals, risk tolerance, or investment knowledge. Brokers have a duty to research investment products and conduct due diligence before recommending any particular investment products. Additionally, they must carefully weigh the investor’s goals and risk tolerance to determine if a particular investment is suitable for their client.
NorthStar’s unsuitable investments often involved offshore insurance products offered by NorthStar, which were more complex and riskier for many investors, compared to other available products.
Misrepresentation or Omission of Material Facts
Broker misconduct in the NorthStar case also included misrepresenting or omitting material facts. Essential information about the risks associated with NorthStar’s products was misrepresented or not disclosed to investors. The intentional concealment of this important information formed the basis of many claims against NorthStar.
Overconcentration of Investments
Overconcentration of investments was another critical issue at NorthStar Financial Services. Investors found a significant portion of their portfolios concentrated in NorthStar products, increasing their risk exposure. Such overconcentration in high-risk investments contradicts the basic investment principle of diversification, which aims to mitigate risk.
Failure of Brokers to Disclose Risks
Inadequate disclosures regarding the NorthStar investment risks were also problematic. This failure is a form of broker misconduct as investors did not receive enough information about the complete picture to make informed decisions. In many cases, brokers minimized the high-risk nature of certain investments or declined to mention the financial challenges NorthStar was facing. Investors relied on their brokers’ false information to their financial detriment.
The Legal Process for Recovering Losses
The legal process for recovering investment losses in fraud cases often involves FINRA arbitration, a critical avenue for investors who have lost money due to securities fraud. This arbitration process, governed by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), provides a platform for resolving disputes between investors and brokers or brokerage firms.
FINRA Arbitration in Investment Fraud Cases
FINRA arbitration is a common recourse for victims of investment fraud. It is a more streamlined and cost-effective alternative to traditional court litigation. The process involves an impartial arbitrator who listens to both parties’ arguments and evidence and then makes a binding decision on the matter. This process is particularly relevant in securities fraud cases, where investors seek to recover their losses.
Filing Claims and Investor Expectations
To initiate the FINRA arbitration process, an investor must file a claim with FINRA, detailing the nature of the alleged misconduct, the losses they incurred, and the circumstances regarding the transaction. The claim outlines the allegations against the broker or brokerage firm, such as unsuitable investment recommendations or misrepresentation. After the filing of the claim, the arbitration process follows a set schedule, with opportunities for both parties to present their cases.
Erez Law’s Role in NorthStar Cases
Erez Law PLLC has a notable track record of success in representing clients in these situations. In 2021, we filed a FINRA complaint and alleged that a broker advised our client to invest in high-risk offshore variable products, including NorthStar Global Advantage Select. The claim stressed that the broker failed to disclose the significant risks involved and concentrated our client’s investment in these high-risk products.
Similarly, we filed another case where a broker advised our client to invest in the high-risk NorthStar Global Advantage Select despite his risk-averse profile. This recommendation led to a concentration risk, exacerbating our client’s exposure to potential losses.
Erez Law’s approach in these cases underscores our commitment to seeking justice for investors affected by broker misconduct. Our proficiency in navigating FINRA arbitration processes has been instrumental in cases against big financial institutions and brokers.
Contact an Investment Fraud Lawyer for Help
If you’ve been affected by investment fraud and are seeking a path to recovery, Erez Law PLLC can help. Don’t let uncertainty and complexity deter you from pursuing what you’re owed. Contact Erez Law PLLC today for a free consultation with a knowledgeable investment fraud attorney.