FINRA Lawsuit Alleges Financial Advisor George Merhoff, Jr. made Unsuitable Investment Recommendations
The White Law Group has submitted a claim to FINRA Dispute Resolution on behalf of a retired Bend, Oregon couple alleging Cetera Advisor George Merhoff, Jr. unsuitably invested his clients in high risk energy investments and MLPs.
The claim alleges violation of common law fraud, breach of fiduciary duty, negligence, and negligent supervision and seeks to recover losses between $500,000 and $1,000,000.
Before recommending an investment, a broker-dealer has a fiduciary duty to adequately disclose the risks involved in the investment and to perform the necessary due diligence to determine whether the investment is suitable for the investor.
According to the statement of claim, Cetera Advisors allegedly failed to perform the necessary due diligence on these investments prior to recommending them to this particular investor.
Further, George Merhoff, Jr., the broker of record, reportedly has 57 (fifty-seven) regulatory events, two regulatory events, two judgement liens, one employment separation, two criminal events and 49 customer complaints. Allegations include unsuitable investments and misrepresentation, among others.
According to his broker profile, FINRA barred Merhoff from working in the securities industry in June 2019.
Brokerage firms are required to supervise their advisors to ensure that they are complying with FINRA rules. If it can be determined that Cetera Advisors failed to adequately supervise its advisor, the firm can be held responsible for any resulting losses in a FINRA arbitration claim.
“We believe there are many more investors who have suffered losses investing in high risk energy investments who just don’t realize they have recourse, or may be unaware of any wrongdoing,” said D. Daxton White, managing partner of The White Law Group.
FINRA Dispute Resolution is an arbitration venue for investors with claims against their brokerage firm or financial professional. It provides investors with an opportunity to attempt to recoup their investment losses and is an alternative to filing such claims in court.
For more information on the claim filed by The White Law Group, please contact the firm’s Chicago office at 888-637-5510.
The White Law Group is a national securities fraud, securities arbitration, and investor protection law firm with offices in Chicago, Illinois. For more information on The White Law Group and its representation of investors in FINRA arbitration claims, visit https://www.whitesecuritieslaw.com.