According to publicly available information, AXA Advisors generates hundreds of millions of dollars in revenue from the sale of variable annuities. While variable annuity products as part of an overall investment strategy for some investors might serve a legitimate purpose, these products have received a lot of criticism: some calling them ‘one of the most overhyped, most oversold, and least understood investment products’ what’s more these are often sold to vulnerable investors or trusting investors who simply don’t know any better. Many investors have file lawsuits “FINRA” claims against financial advisors to recover losses.
AXA Advisors Annuity Complaints
According to financial regulators in New York, AXA’s emphasis on pushing Variable Annuity investments on unwary investors has triggered widespread concerns:
- In 2010, the New York State Department of Insurance fined AXA $1.9 million for violations, including making inaccurate or incomplete disclosures to consumers buying replacement annuity contracts and life insurance policies.
- In 2014, AXA was the subject of the largest fine ever levied by the New York State Department of Financial Services for failing to report changes in its variable annuity structure. The fine was $20 million.
AXA Advisors Lawsuit “FINRA” Complaints
In addition, AXA has consistently attracted the attention of national securities regulators including the Financial Regulatory Authority (FINRA) for issues that go well beyond just the sales of Variable Annuity products to investors:
- Sept. 2007: FINRA Fines AXA Advisors $1.2 Million for Fee-Based Account Violations, Orders Return of $1.4 Million in Fees to Approximately 1,800 Customers.
- July 2009: FINRA Permanently Bars Broker Operating Ponzi Scheme Involving Customers of Broker-Dealers.
- Oct. 2015: FINRA Orders an Additional Five Firms to Pay $18 Million in Restitution to Charities and Retirement Accounts Overcharged for Mutual Funds.
- There was also a $3 million arbitration award to a retiree in New York.
The problem in many instances comes down to sales practice issues and negligent supervision. Where investment products were sold by financial advisors without proper risk disclosures or unsuitable products, investments, or investment strategies were employed – they may be considered inappropriately risky or unsuitable recommendations. Similarly, if recommendations by financial advisors include individual investment, sector, or product concentration risk issues (too many eggs in one basket), those could be indicative of both sales practice and supervision issues.
AXA Investors Seeking to Recover Losses
For some investors, a private FINRA arbitration customer dispute enables them to bring a claim and potentially recoup their investment losses. These customer disputes typically involve only paper discovery and no depositions, and they are generally faster and more efficient compared to traditional court litigation, as they provide a private forum to resolve disputes more quickly and efficiently.
About Haselkorn & Thibaut, P.A.
Haselkorn and Thibaut, P.A. is a nationwide law firm specializing in handling investment fraud and securities arbitration cases. The law firm has offices in Palm Beach, Florida, on Park Avenue in New York, as well as in Phoenix, Arizona, Houston, Texas, and Cary, North Carolina. The two founding partners have nearly 45 years of legal experience.
Haselkorn & Thibaut, P.A. has filed numerous (private arbitration) customer disputes with the Financial Industry Regulatory Association (FINRA) for customers who suffered investment losses relating to issues similar to those matters mentioned above. There are typically no depositions involved, and those cases are typically handled on contingency with no recovery, no fee terms. Experienced attorneys at Haselkorn & Thibaut, P.A. are available for a free consultation as a public service. Call today for more information at 1-800-856-3352 or visit our website and email us from there at www.investmentfraudlawyers.com.