The law firm of Oakes & Fosher is presently investigating the alleged misconduct of former securities broker Shawn Burns. According to his publicly available FINRA BrokerCheck report, Shawn Burns has been the subject of multiple customer disputes.

Shawn Burns was a New York based securities broker. He worked in the securities industry for seventeen years. During his career, he was registered with eight different securities firms. He is no longer working as a registered securities broker in any fashion.

His Registrations

  • Global Capital Markets (1999-2000)
  • Cantella & Co. (2000-2001)
  • Murphy & Durieu (2001-2002)
  • J.P. Turner & Company (2002-2005, 2007-2009)
  • Westrock Advisors (2005-2007)
  • First Midwest Securities (2009-2011)
  • Salomon Whitney (2011-2012, 2014-2016)
  • Cape Securities (2012-2014)

The Allegations

  • In May 2002, a customer alleged that Shawn Burns engaged in unauthorized trading. This case was settled for $5,000 in damages
  • In November 2010, a customer alleged that Shawn Burns committed fraud, churned their account, made material misrepresentations, recommended unsuitable investments, and breached his fiduciary duty. This case was settled for $40,000 in damages.
  • In March 2012, a customer alleged that Shawn Burns failed to follow instructions. This case was settled for $45,000 in damages.
  • In June 2015, a customer alleged that Shawn Burns recommended unsuitable investments, made material omissions, made material misrepresentations, breached his fiduciary duty, executed unauthorized trades, and handled their account negligently. This case was settled for $14,999 in damages.
  • In January 2016, a customer alleged that Shawn Burns recommended unsuitable investments, churned their account, omitted material facts, and executed unauthorized trades. This case was settled for $15,000 in damages.
  • In May 2016, a customer alleged that Shawn Burns recommended unsuitable investments, breached his fiduciary duty, and breached contract. This case was settled for $130,000 in damages
  • After receiving so many complaints, Shawn Burns was discharged from his position at Salomon Whitney Financial In May 2016.
  • Also in May 2016, a customer alleged that Shawn Burns recommended unsuitable investments, breached his fiduciary duty, handled their account negligently, and breached contract. This case was settled for $23,000 in damages.
  • In June 2016, a customer alleged that Shawn Burns engaged in an unauthorized use of margin. This case was settled for $12,500 in damages.
  • In July 2016, a customer alleged that Shawn Burns engaged in excessive trading, recommended unsuitable investments, and handled their account negligently. This case was settled for $185,000 in damages.
  • In August 2016, a customer alleged that Shawn Burns breached his fiduciary duty, handled their account negligently, and breached contract. This case was settled for $30,000 in damages.
  • In August 2016, a customer alleged that Shawn Burns churned their account, executed unauthorized trades, breached his fiduciary duty, committed common law fraud, and handled their account negligently. This case was settled for $45,000 in damages.
  • In October 2016, a customer alleged that Shawn Burns churned his account and recommended unsuitable trades. This case was settled for $15,000 in damages.
  • In March 2017, a customer alleged that Shawn Burns recommended unsuitable investments and excessively traded their account. This case was settled for $35,000 in damages.
  • In April 2018, a customer alleged that Shawn Burns churned their account, handled their account negligently, recommended unsuitable investments, executed unauthorized trades, and breached contract. This case is currently pending. The customer is seeking $156,557 in damages.
  • In September 2018, a customer alleged that Shawn Burns excessively traded their account, recommended unsuitable investment strategies, handled their account negligently, and breached contract. This case is currently pending. The customer is seeking $100,000 in damages.

What Does This Mean?

Securities brokers have an obligation to their customers to always act in their best financial interests. There are some less than scrupulous brokers who ignore this duty when engaging in more self-serving trading practices. One such trading practice, that Shawn Burns was accused of, is that of churning. This is an incredibly fraudulent act that occurs when a securities broker trades an investor’s account excessively with the express intent of increasing the amount they receive in commissions. This occurs because most brokers are compensated for their services by receiving a percentage of the investor’s principal investment as their commission every time they execute a trade on their behalf. This manner of compensation proved to be too alluring to brokers who perpetrated the fraudulent act of churning.

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 Shawn Burns, please contact Oakes & Fosher for a free and private consultation. We work on a contingency basis, which means there are no fees charged unless we collect for you.