Good investments can help people reach their financial goals and create long-term stability for themselves and their families. Yet, there is always some risk when people invest their money. The market fluctuates and high returns on investment cannot be guaranteed.
But not all losses are normal or are just the risk of doing business. Unfortunately, sometimes losses are the result of investment fraud, when an adviser deliberately defrauds an investor of money. In many other instances, advisers negligently make unsuitable choices for their investors.
Here are some signs that your losses may be due to investment fraud or negligence:
- It is difficult to get in touch and speak with your broker or adviser. They rarely return phone calls or emails, and if they do, they are purposely vague, try to confuse you with convoluted industry jargon, or fail to provide substantive answers to your questions.
- You do not receive financial documents in a timely manner, even after you have requested them.
- When you review the documents, you notice an unusually high number of trades, or trades that you do not recognize or did not authorize.
- Your losses seem abnormally high and contrary to the risk preferences you discussed with your broker or adviser. These investments raise a question of suitability.
- Your broker or adviser contacts you with “unique” or “urgent” investment opportunities that you must decide on quickly. He or she might tell you they are “no risk” or “guaranteed” returns. Avoid these investment opportunities that sound too good to be true.
- All of your investments do not appear on the account statements that you receive from the brokerage firm. If your adviser appears to be creating his own reports of your investments or returns, the investments may not be legitimate.
What do you do if you believe you are a victim of investment fraud?
If you have repeated or sudden losses in your investments, or you recognize some of the above warning signs, here are some important steps to take to determine whether you are a victim of investment fraud:
- Save all of your documents. Keep track of all documents your broker or adviser has given you, and try to keep track of all correspondence with him or her. Write down the times and dates of your phone calls, and save any and all emails.
- Make a list of any activities that you believe are suspicious.
- Make an appointment with an investment fraud attorney. A qualified investment fraud lawyer will be better equipped to identify red flags in your financial documents and help to determine whether you have a case against your broker or adviser.
Determining whether you were the victim of investment fraud or negligence takes time and a careful review of documents. If you have reason to believe you might have been defrauded you should contact an experienced investment fraud attorney. Contact the law office of Fishman Haygood Investment Fraud Lawyers today for help.