On December 12, 2012, Massachusetts securities regulators announced that they are suing LPL Financial in connection with sales of risky investments known as non-traded REITs. LPL Financial has been charged with improper sales practices and inadequate supervision of registered representatives who sold non-traded REITs.
These charges are in connection with the sales of $28 million in non-traded REITs between 2006 and 2009, which were sold to nearly 600 clients in Massachusetts. According to the Massachusetts Securities Division, 569 of those transactions had regulatory violations, including violations of prospectus requirements, violations of Massachusetts concentration limits and violations of LPL’s compliance practices.
Inland American Real Estate Trust Inc. accounted for the largest amount of sales of all the REITs listed in the complaint. With real estate assets amounting to $11.2 billion, this REIT was the largest non-traded REIT in the industry.
According to the complaint, the investigation has “revealed significant and widespread problems with LPL’s adherence with the product prospectus and (state) requirements.” However, securities fraud attorneys say that Massachusetts may not be the only state that had its regulatory requirements violated by LPL, though it is the only state listed in this particular complaint. The complaint went on to state that “on paper, LPL set forth stringent requirements for the sale of non-traded REITs. In practice, LPL failed to review properly sales of non-traded REITs. While purporting to conduct a thorough review of offering documents, LPL allegedly overlooked prospectus delivery requirements in numerous sales of non-traded REITs.”
Investors who believe that a financial advisor or stockbroker may have violated their rights in connection with sales of non-traded REITs or other securities may contact Law Office of Christopher J. Gray, P.C. at (866) 966-9598 for a confidential, no-obligation consultation.