BrokerCheck Announces PR Campaign
On June 1, 2015, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) announced that it had launched a campaign promoting BrokerCheck (brokercheck.finra.org). BrokerCheck allows investors to access information about a broker’s employment history, certifications and licenses, as well as regulatory actions, violations or complaints made against them. BrokerCheck does not include information about all brokers registered with FINRA. Additionally, some fraudster brokers have discovered they can avoid disclosure of negative information on BrokerCheck simply by changing their name.
The new FINRA ads feature cute examples of people taking action without conducting any background research, including:
- a bride surprised by her organist’s song choice;
- a man too late in reading the listed side effects of the medication he has taken; and
- a truck driver blissfully ignorant of a road’s clearance restrictions.
Investors should be cautious about the scope of information contained in the BrokerCheck database. FINRA website points out that some information is removed after a certain time period, such as bankruptcies over 10 years old. Additionally, FINRA depends upon brokers and brokerage firms to update their professional and disciplinary information. BrokerCheck does not have information until it is reported. As such, investors should be aware that BrokerCheck is not exhaustive but is a good starting point for due diligence.
Hamilton & Associates | Securities Lawyers
Brenda Hamilton, Securities Attorney
101 Plaza Real South, Suite 201 South
Boca Raton, Florida 33432
Telephone: (561) 416-8956
Facsimile: (561) 416-2855