Michael Severance (CRD # 1023971) was a former Financial Advisor at National Planning Corp. and LPL Financial in Edina, Minnesota. Michael Severance previously worked at Voya Financial Advisors between 1981-2016.
According to publicly available records released by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), in December 2018, LPL Financial terminated Michael Severance for “violation of the Firm’s outside business activity, and gifts and gratuities policy.” This employment termination prompted a FINRA investigation, which culminated in Michael Severance being barred from the securities industry in November 2019.
According to the FINRA sanction, “Severance consented to the sanction and to the entry of findings that he refused to produce documents and information requested by FINRA pursuant to FINRA Rule 8210. The findings stated that Severance’s member firm had filed a Form U5 that terminated his association with the firm after it discovered that he, without notifying the firm or obtaining the firm’s approval, had provided bill-paying services to a firm customer, for compensation, and that the customer had given a monetary gift to Severance’s son in excess of $100.”
FINRA rules prohibit this type of conduct unless approved and supervised by the employing brokerage firm because it can often lead to financial abuse, particularly with elderly clients. This has been a focus of FINRA in recent years given the aging baby boomer population.
For a copy of the FINRA sanction, click https://www.finra.org/sites/default/files/fda_documents/2019061052201%20Michael%20R.%20Severance%20CRD%201023971%20AWC%20jm.pdf
For a copy of Michael Severance’s CRD, click https://brokercheck.finra.org/individual/summary/1023971#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.
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