Swindlers of Seniors Targeted by Massachusetts’ Head Securities Regulator

William F. Galvin, Head of the Massachusetts Securities Division, declared war against deceptive financial advisers who prey on senior citizens.

Massachusetts became the first state in the nation to adopt regulations governing brokers or advisers who use credentials or professional designations suggesting expertise in advising senior citizens on financial matters.

Effective June 1, the new regulations state that only credentials accredited by a nationally recognized accreditation agency – also approved by the Secretary of the Commonwealth – may be used when offering seniors financial advice.

“The Securities Division of my office has seen a number of instances in which older investors have been duped into buying unsuitable investments by self-proclaimed senior financial advisers who are, in reality, salesmen for one specific instrument, such as an equity indexed annuity,” Secretary William F. Galvin said.

“The salesmen have used impressive-sounding but often meaningless credentials to gain legitimacy with their clients.”

The new regulations govern use of credentials and professional designations that use words such as “senior,” “retirement,” “elder” in combination with words such as “certified,” “adviser” and/or “specialist” to imply a special certification or training in advising or servicing senior investors.

In the new regulations, the term “senior investor” refers to a person 65 years of age or older.

Securities regulators are like “police” who write tickets and arrest criminals. To recover damages for a car wreck or an “investment wreck” you should contact a skilled attorney to represent you. Our firm has represented 1,000’s investors nationwide. To discuss whether we can assist you recover investment loss, contact Shepherd Smith and Edwards today for a free consultation.

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