The law firm of Oakes & Fosher is presently investigating the alleged misconduct of former securities broker Tamara Steele. According to her publicly available FINRA BrokerCheck report, Tamara Steele has been the subject of multiple customer disputes.
Tamara Steele was an Indiana based securities broker. She worked in the securities industry for seventeen years. During her career, she was registered with four different securities firms. She is no longer working as a registered securities broker in any fashion.
- Franklin Financial Services Corporation (1999-2002)
- American General Securities Incorporated (2002-2007)
- Purshe Kaplan Sterling Investments (2008)
- Comprehensive Asset Management and Servicing (2009-2017)
- In July 2017, a customer alleged that Tamara Steele engaged in outside business activities, sold securities away from her member firm, made unsuitable investment recommendations, negligently managed their account, violated the Indiana Securities Act, sold unregistered and non-exempt securities, breached her fiduciary duty, and violated FINRA Conduct Rules. These allegations were related to the purchase of Behavioral Recognition Systems securities. This case went to arbitration where the customer was awarded $172,408 in damages.
- In January 2018, customers alleged that investments recommended by Tamara Steele were not suitable given their investment objectives. The customers also alleged that the investments were misrepresented to them by Steele. This case was settled for $44,500 in damages.
- In March 2018, a customer alleged Tamara Steele sold away from her member firm, executed private securities transactions, made unsuitable investment recommendations, engaged in negligent account management, violated the Indiana Securities Act, sold unregistered and non-exempt securities, breached her fiduciary duty, and violated FINRA Conduct Rules. This case is currently pending. The customer is seeking $124,757 in damages. Tamara Steele received three identical complaints between May and July of 2018. These cases were settled for a total of $250,430 in damages.
- Throughout October and November 0f 2018, Tamara Steele received multiple complaints from customers alleging that certain investments she recommended to them were not suitable based on their investment objectives. The customers also alleged that the investments had been misrepresented to them. Most of these complaints are currently pending. One of them was settled for $1,181,449 in damages.
What Does This Mean?
Securities brokers are not allowed to recommend private securities outside the scope of their member firms without approval from said member firm. This is because these private transactions are often only executed due to significant conflicts of interest. Securities brokers may begin recommending private investments to member firm customers because they themselves hold equity in the product, or because they are receiving cash kickbacks from a third party, or simply because they are in pursuit of the incredibly large commissions that recommending brokers receive when executing these transactions. This can motivate securities brokers to recommend these private investments to customers that are woefully unsuited for them. It is the responsibility of the securities firm to prevent investors from being harmed in this fashion. The firm is not absolved from liability simply because the securities broker does not communicate their intent to engage in these private transactions. Securities firms need to have adequate procedures in place designed to supervise their registered brokers and catch them when they are engaging in any unauthorized and potentially harmful activities.
Oakes & Fosher Can Help
Many investors are unaware of the legal recourse available to them after losing money due to securities broker fraud and/or negligence. The truth is that investors who have lost money in this fashion may actually be entitled to damages. Oakes & Fosher dedicates its entire legal practice to helping investors across the nation. If you, or someone you know, have lost money investing with Tamara Steele, please contact Oakes & Fosher for a free and private consultation. Oakes & Fosher handles cases on a contingency basis, which means there are no fees charged unless we collect for you.