Broker-Dealer/Investment Advisory Defense

More and more often, disappointed investors are turning to the court system and FINRA arbitration to try to recover perceived losses.  Not only do these cases cost you time and money, but they can also distract you from your core business and hurt your level of service to clients.  That is where the Law Office of Will M. Helixon can help.  As former in house BD/RIA attorneys and firm executives, we personally understand the stress and disruption caused by these claims.  With experience in more than 160 FINRA arbitrations and 22 state and federal court matters there is hardly a fact pattern or type of dispute that we have not seen.  We put this experience to work immediately, easing your mind and allowing you to focus on growing your business and taking care of your clients.

Our experience includes claims involving allegations of:

  • unsuitable sales
  • overconcentration of illiquid, alternative investments
  • breach of fiduciary duties
  • selling away
  • undisclosed outside business activities
  • fraud
  • inadequate due diligence
  • breach of contract
  • violation of FINRA/SEC/state rules
  • churning
  • misrepresentation
  • failure to disclose material risks
  • undisclosed conflicts of interest
  • inappropriate product switching/share classes
  • broker misconduct
  • unauthorized trading
  • forgery and theft
  • reverse churning
  • trade errors
  • identity theft/wire fraud

We have also defended against numerous so-called “mass arbitrations” involving up to 250 claimants in a single action.  Due to our substantial connections throughout the industry, chances are we already know the firm bringing the cause of action and/or the defense team of the other respondents.  Successful case resolution or defense often depends on working well with other counsel and avoiding unproductive disputes.  We keep our focus on aggressively defending your interests without treating opposing counsel or parties with a lack of professionalism that might reflect poorly on your firm.

If you are ready to have your firm and claim defended with the experience of dedicated trial advocates, contact our business partner, Jon Stanfield to discuss your matter today.

Regulatory Defense

The securities markets and firms are highly regulated by every level of the government and a wide variety of self-regulatory organizations.  In the name of protecting the investing public and markets, these entities can demand documents, data, office audits, and interviews and enforce compliance lapses with letters of caution, fines, suspensions and cease and desist orders.  Any form of discipline may also be used by ambitious attorneys advertising for clients to bring adverse actions against you.  With this much on the line, it only makes sense to seek out and retain an experienced securities defense attorney to help you explain and defend your positions.

Our attorneys have years of experience and have represented clients in well over 100 regulatory matters.  Here is a list of the type of matters on which we have assisted:

  • FINRA or SEC on the record interviews (OTRs)
  • Answering complaint inquiries and responses
  • Regulatory sweeps
  • Contesting Form U6 filings by a regulator
  • Routine audit responses
  • For Cause audit responses
  • AML audit responses
  • State enforcement actions
  • FINRA and SEC enforcement actions
  • CFP investigations
  • NFA investigations
  • Negotiating terms and language of Acceptance, Waiver and Consents (AWCs)
  • Expert witness testimony on regulatory matters

Other Services

In addition to our core claim and regulatory defense services, the firm is also pleased to offer the following additional services to our clients.

Training and Presentations

  • Annual Compliance training for advisors and registered staff
  • Customer Identification Training
  • Consideration of Others Training/Sexual Harassment Prevention


  • Broker-Dealer operations consulting
  • Investment-Adviser operations consulting

Industry Disputes

  • Advisor-Firm employment disputes

General Compliance Support

  • Review and drafting of investment advisory agreements/forms
  • Drafting complaint responses
  • Review of written supervisory procedures and/or compliance manuals
  • Risk Management evaluations
  • Annual AML Audits
  • Mock exams/annual compliance reviews
  • Branch audits/independent investigations

Succession Planning Support

  • Negotiation and drafting of buy/sell agreements