How Can a Lawyer Help You Win Your Stockbroker Fraud Lawsuit?
If your stockbroker has defrauded you, there are steps you can take to win your lawsuit so that you receive compensation for the financial loss. The first thing you should do is seek legal help from a lawyer specializing in cases like yours.
Whether or not you file a claim and win depends on the strength of your case. A stockbroker fraud lawyer can help you prove that your broker’s fraudulent acts have financially harmed you.
Some common ways that stockbrokers commit fraud include:
- Misrepresenting or omitting pertinent information about investments.
- Making unauthorized trades in client accounts that are not beneficial or are fraudulent.
- Charging commissions over the amount allowed by state law.
- Committing mail fraud when soliciting investments with false information about the investment.
A claim for financial compensation must be brought within a specific time frame after the illegal activity. For most investments, you have to file your lawsuit within three years.
Your lawyer will need to investigate the situation to determine whether your claims are valid and legally claimable under the law. Here are the ways they can help you win your case:
Make Sure You Have A Good Case
Before you retain a lawyer or file your case, it’s essential to make sure you have a good chance of winning. To do this, the attorney will need to carefully review all the documentation about your case and assess whether you have a high probability of winning. It will depend on how strong evidence is for your claims, as well as which specific laws govern cases like yours.
Proving The Fraud
One of the prime things a lawyer will do is help you prove that your stockbroker committed fraud. They can do this by obtaining copies of all the documentation, including any records of trade activity and correspondence between you and your broker. They can also interview your former colleagues to find out what they know about the situation and interview outside witnesses who may have been involved somehow. These witnesses could include the broker’s manager, other brokers at the same firm, or even your friends and family.
A lawyer can also take depositions from witnesses and your broker to ask them under oath about the fraudulent activities.
Creating A Strong Case
To win a fraud lawsuit, it must be proved that you suffered fraud. To do this, your lawyer will gather all the necessary documents and evidence to prove your loss and fraudulent dealing of your broker. Your lawyer can assist you in gathering documentation of your financial losses, such as bank statements and brokerage trade confirmations. Keeping an accurate list of all your investments and the dates on which you purchased them will also be very helpful in building a solid case against your broker.
To win your lawsuit and receive compensation, you must demonstrate that you have suffered damages due to the fraud. In other words, you have been financially harmed by the actions of your broker. It will not always be easy to do, but there are many ways in which a lawyer can help you prove that your losses exceed the amount of money in your brokerage account.
For example, if you had a significant balance on margin and your broker liquidated some shares, this may reduce the overall value of your investment portfolio. It means that there is less money available for you to live on or invest elsewhere, and thus you have been financially harmed by the loss of your brokerage account funds.
Your stockbroker fraud lawyer may also help you prove damages to your investment portfolio if your account was over-concentrated in a specific asset, such as one particular stock. In this situation, it should be easier to demonstrate that you lost money because of this concentration and how it impacted the overall value of your investment portfolio.
If your broker is convicted of fraud, you are entitled to have restitution ordered by the court. It means that you can receive all or some of your money back from the broker. Depending on the severity of the case against them, they may be required to pay back not only what was lost but any penalties, fines, and attorney’s fees that were incurred during the lawsuit.
Your lawyer can also file a request directly with the court asking them to order restitution before your broker goes on trial. It is only granted in extreme cases, but it may be worth trying if you have suffered extensive financial losses.
Fighting For Punitive Damages
When punishment is appropriate for an offense against the law, you may be able to request that your stockbroker fraud lawyer asks for punitive damages. The court awards these to send a message about unacceptable behavior and deter others from doing the same thing in the future. The more outrageous the unlawful activity, the more likely you will receive this additional payout even if other damages are minor.