- October 7, 2018
- National Planning Corp
The Wolper Law Firm is currently investigating claims against Dexter Thomas, a former Financial Advisor at National Planning Corp. in Dallas, Texas. Dexter Thomas has been in the securities industry since the 1980s.
According to publicly available records released by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), on August 2, 2018, Dexter Thomas was terminated by United Planners Financial Services American for allegedly referring customers to make private loans in violation of the law and FINRA rules. Specifically, it was alleged:
“Registered Representative affiliated with the Firm in late-2017. A short period of time later, the Registered Representative passed away. Immediately before his death, the Registered Representative disclosed that he was involved with a number of private loans or private investments with individuals-some of whom became customers of the Firm-which private loans or investments were neither disclosed to, nor approved by, the Firm. Registered Representative’s affiliation was terminated by the Firm. After the Registered Representative’s death, a number of individuals, including customers new to the Firm, have claimed that the Registered Representative did not return all of the funds privately loaned to or invested with the Registered Representative.”
The alleged misconduct in which Dexter Thomas is alleged to have participated is referred to as “selling away.” The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) strictly prohibits financial advisors from “selling away” or selling securities and investments to clients that are not offered by the brokerage firm with which they are employed. For example, it is illegal and a violation of industry rules for a financial advisor to recommend or even suggest that a client invest in the financial advisor’s own business or a business operated by his or her friends or family. It is not necessary that the financial advisor earn any compensation for recommending an outside investment.
The purpose behind this prohibition is to ensure that a financial advisor only offers to sell securities that have been vetted by his or her employer brokerage firm through a rigorous due diligence process. Most brokerage firms have an approved list of investments, products, and research that can be provided or made available to clients. Any deviation by the financial advisor from the approved product list may constitute selling away.
After his termination, eleven customer complaints have been filed against him, alleging that “Registered Representative did not return all of the funds that were privately loaned to or privately invested with the Registered Representative. The private loan(s) or investment(s) were neither disclosed to nor approved by the Firm.” The alleged damages of the thirteen (13) complaints range from $25,000-$8.1 million and all remain pending.
Prior to his termination, Dexter Thomas was the subject of several more customer complaints, alleging sales practice violations, including breach of fiduciary duty, unsuitable investment recommendations and misrepresentation.
A For a full copy of Dexter Thomas’ FINRA disclosure report, click https://brokercheck.finra.org/individual/summary/1074222#disclosuresSection.
Financial advisors have a legal and regulatory obligation to recommend only suitable investments that are appropriate for their clients’ needs and objectives. Their employing brokerage firm has a legal and regulatory obligation to supervise the Financial Advisors’ sales practices and dealings with clients. To the extent any of these duties are breached, the customer may be entitled to a recovery of his or her investment losses.
If you or someone you know was a customer Dexter Thomas and you experienced investment losses, please contact the Wolper Law Firm at 800.931.8452 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss your specific situation and the legal options available. The Wolper Law Firm represents investors nationwide in securities litigation and arbitration.
Matt Wolper, the Managing Principal of the Wolper Law Firm, is a trial lawyer who has handled hundreds of securities cases during his career involving a wide range of products, strategies and securities. Prior to representing investors, he was a partner with a national law firm, where he represented some of the largest banks and brokerage firms in the world in securities matters.