Stoltmann Law Offices is investigating Jack W. Griffith Jr., a registered broker with Janney Montgomery Scott. Griffith has a pending lawsuit against him, alleging that he recommended high-risk energy investments causing damages in excess of $4 million. Griffith allegedly sold clients Linn Energy and Peabody Energy investments, even though both companies are now bankrupt. Energy, oil and gas investments are typically high-risk and illiquid investments that are not suitable for all investors. A broker has a duty to do his due diligence on every security he recommends or sells, and must take into account the client’s age, net worth, investment objectives and investment sophistication before doing so. If he does not, his brokerage firm may be liable for losses on a contingency fee basis, as it had a duty to reasonably supervise him while he was registered there.
Jack W. Griffith Jr., according to his online BrokerCheck report with the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), was previously registered with Merrill Lynch in New York, New York from January 1986 until November 1995, Prudential Securities in New York from November 1995 until July 1998, Legg Mason Wood Walker in Baltimore, Maryland from July 1998 until May 2004, A.G. Edwards & Sons in Sumter, South Carolina from May 2004 until May 2007, Ameriprise in Columbia, South Carolina from May 2007 until October 2009 and Ameriprise in Columbia from October 2009 until January 2014. He is currently registered with Janney Montgomery Scott in Columbia, and has been since January 2014. He has three customer disputes against him, one of which is currently pending. The disputes allege recommendation of unsuitable securities that caused the client’s accounts to be overconcentrated in energy investments, recommendations that were misrepresented, and unsuitable recommendations in companies that declared bankruptcy.
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