Voya Financial Advisors, Inc. (“Voya Financial”) (CRD# 2882) has many different complaints filed by FINRA (Financial Industry Regulatory Authority), state regulatory organizations, and investors such as yourself. At the Law Offices of Robert Wayne Pearce, we have investigated Voya Financial, its regulatory and customer complaints, and have also represented investors with claims of fraud, negligence, and breach of fiduciary duty against this organization and its financial advisors.
If you believe you have a claim against Voya Financial, you should strongly consider hiring an investment fraud lawyer. You should not wait until it’s too late to file a claim. The Law Offices of Robert Wayne Pearce, P.A., offers free consultations. Give us a call at 800-732-2889. Let’s discuss your case and see what we can do to help you get the compensation you need and deserve.
Can I Sue Voya Financial?
If you’ve lost money caused by Voya Financial and/or its employees’ misconduct then the answer is, YES, you can sue Voya Financial but the odds are you signed away your right to sue in court and agreed to resolve your dispute in a FINRA arbitration proceeding. Attorney Robert Wayne Pearce has over 40 years of personal experience in FINRA arbitration proceedings and knows very well how you can not only sue Voya Financial in FINRA arbitration proceedings, but WIN that arbitration. The easiest way to know if you have a viable case against Voya Financial is to call Attorney Pearce at our office at 800-732-2889.
What is Voya Financial?
Voya Financial (CRD# 2882) is a registered broker-dealer. It operates as a full-service independent broker-dealer, providing a range of financial products and services to individual investors and financial advisors.
As a registered broker-dealer, Voya Financial is subject to regulations and oversight by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA). It is required to comply with industry standards and regulations to ensure the protection of its clients’ interests.
A failure to comply with industry standards by either its brokers or the firm itself can result in disciplinary actions, fines, or other penalties imposed by regulatory authorities.
Voya Financial Has Many Different Regulatory Problems
Voya Financial’ rapid growth has not been without consequences. There have been approximately 42 state and self-regulatory body disclosure events; that is, final and formal proceedings initiated by a regulatory authority (e.g., a state or federal securities agency like the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) or self-regulatory body like the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) for a violation(s) of investment-related rules or regulations. In addition, there have been hundreds of customer complaints filed against Voya Financial for misconduct by its securities sales and investment advisory representatives that are not reported by the firm on its Central Depository Record.
We have reported and written about these regulatory problems and customer complaints over many years. Voya Financial is a repeat offender: there are over 42 FINRA-reported disciplinary proceedings citing the firm with one form of supervisory lapses or another.
A Brief Overview of Some of the Regulatory Problems Voya Financial Has Faced Over the Years*
Voya Financial has been repeatedly censured, warned, and fined multi-millions of dollars for its own misconduct and failure to supervise its army of financial advisors.* A few of the notable FINRA Sanctions for its Supervisory Failures are below:
Voya Financial Settles with SEC for $22.9 Million Over Alleged Conflicts and Breaches
Brief Overview: Voya Financial Advisors settled with the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) for $22.9 million, including $13.9 million in restitution and interest to harmed customers. The settlement was reached due to alleged conflicts at Voya’s registered investment advisor arm, which led to breaches of fiduciary obligations to advisory clients. The SEC found that from January 2013 to December 2018, Voya’s investment adviser representatives made recommendations that charged costlier 12b-1 marketing fees, charged upfront commissions for expensive alternative investments, recommended underperforming cash sweep money market funds, and provided misleading comparisons to transfer funds to a bank cash sweep product. In addition to the restitution, Voya Financial will pay a $9 million civil penalty.
SEC Fines Voya Financial $3.1 Million for Undisclosed Payments from Clearing Broker
Brief Overview: The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has censured and fined Voya Financial Advisors $3.1 million for failing to disclose payments from its clearing broker for selling clients funds from the broker’s no-transaction-fee (NTF) mutual fund platform. Voya agreed to fund revenue-sharing and service-fee sharing arrangements without adequately disclosing the resulting conflict of interest to its clients. The SEC also found that Voya lacked supervisory procedures to ensure proper disclosure. The penalty includes $2.7 million in disgorgement to customers and a $300,000 civil penalty. Voya terminated its service fee arrangement with the clearing firm and agreed to send copies of the agreement to all its existing advisory clients.
*Above are only some of the regulatory disciplinary actions filed against Voya Financial by FINRA. NASSA and other state securities regulator investigations and enforcement actions account for another 42 BrokerCheck disclosures.
Voya Financial Customer Complaints
There have been scores of customer complaints filed against Voya Financial stockbrokers and investment advisors over the years. We have launched many investigations of current and former Voya Financial advisors:
- David Wall of Voya Financial Advisors, Inc.
- Andrew Harris of Commonwealth Financial Network
- James Knee of Voya Financial Advisors, Inc
- David Monckton of Ameriprise Financial Services, LLC
- Douglas Everett of Ameriprise Financial Services
- Richard Casolari of Voya Financial Advisors
- James Zegers of LPL Financial
- Aaron Gore of Ameriprise Financial Services, LLC
- Sean Sullivan of National Securities
- Ashley Woodard of NY Life
- Joseph Weiser of Voya Financial Advisors
- James Vandenburg of Cambridge Investment Research
- Ronald Metcalf of Voya Financial Advisors
- Pamela Lizanich of NY Life
- Aaron Lavigne of Voya Financial Advisors
- Daniel Morris of Voya Financial Advisors
- Khary Miller of LPL Financial
- Michael Aschberger of Voya Financial Advisors
- Justin Marcus of Voya Financial Advisors
- Larry Laio Formerly With Voya Financial Advisors
- Donald Schrock formerly with Voya Financial Advisors
- Richard Sall of LPL Financial
- Ronald Menard of Voya Financial Advisors
- Lisa Reich-Scholtisek of Voya Financial Advisors
- James Zegers formerly with LPL Financial
- Mark Chrisenberry of Ameriprise Financial Services
- Akhil Kumar of Cadaret, Grant & Co., Inc.
- Donald Coffin of LPL Financial
- Edward Bacher of LPL Financial LLC
- Eric Gibbs of Fidelity Brokerage Services LLC
- Francis Dougherty Of Prudential Financial Planning Services
- James Joly of Cantella & Co., Inc.
- Larry Kettle, Jr. of Cetera Advisor Networks LLC
- Mark Fisher, Jr. Formerly with Voya Financial Advisors, Inc.
- Matthew Metzger of Cetera Advisor Networks LLC
- Nathan Lundquist formerly with Voya Financial Advisors, Inc.
- Peter Mersberger of LPL Financial LLC
- Rajeswaran Venkatraman Voya Financial Advisors, Inc.
- Ronald Metcalf, Jr. of Cetera Advisor Networks LLC
- Samuel Head of Ameriprise Financial Services, LLC
- Sandy Dorson of Cetera Advisor Networks LLC
- William Johnson formerly with Cadaret, Grant & Co., Inc.
- James Flynn formerly with IFS Securities
- Daniel Loy of Independent Financial Group, LLC
- Frank Chiodi Jr of Osaic Wealth, Inc.
- Thomas Brennan, III of Cetera Advisor Networks LLC
- Nathan Wells of Cetera Advisor Networks LLC
If you have lost money investing with any of these Voya Financial advisors or others within this brokerage firm, it’s important that you reach out to an investment loss attorney quickly because the statutes of limitations can bar your claims. Call us at 800-732-2889.
Why Does Voya Financial Have So Many Regulatory Problems And Customer Complaints?
Independent broker-dealers are notorious for their lax supervisory practices and procedures. The business model of these franchise type operations is to open many offices nationwide for steady growth of fixed monthly revenues without the costs attendant to a full-service branch office with on-site manager, compliance officer and operation personnel. The registered representatives of these independent broker-dealers generally operate as separately incorporated businesses. They are not employees of the broker-dealer and therefore not controlled in the same manner as full-service brokerage firm representatives. The registered representatives control their structure and costs to maximize profits and often leave the protection of investors’ rights and interests as their lowest priority.
The typical supervisory organization of independent broker-dealer operations is to have other independent contractors operate Offices of Supervisory Jurisdiction (OSJs) to monitor the registered representatives from geographically remote offices and then report to the main franchisor’s compliance office at national headquarters. The supervisors at the OSJs are not employees of the franchisor and often run their own brokerage, insurance and other businesses. They are not devoted full-time supervisors of the smaller branch offices. Consequently, OSJ managers cannot and do not supervise the day-to-day operations of the registered representatives of these Independent broker-dealers.
Generally, there is no immediate review of new accounts opened, securities transactions, business records, cash or securities receipts and deliveries, correspondence and business activities unrelated to the securities brokerage operation at these independent brokerage firms. The lax supervision leaves investors who have transferred their accounts to the smaller independent broker-dealer vulnerable to sales of securities that have not been reviewed or authorized by anyone other than the sales representative earning a commission. There may be no one onsite to detect forgeries of clients’ signatures on documents, the placement of inaccurate information about a client’s investment objectives and financial condition to document the suitability of a particular investment recommendation. Oftentimes there is no daily review of sales literature and client correspondence to protect against misrepresentations and misleading statements being made to investors. In fact, it is not unusual for there to be only one compliance audit visit per year at many of these offices.
These Independent brokerage business operations are worrisome to the North American Securities Administrators Association (NASAA), which has documented more instances of sales abuse and consequently investor losses at these firms than the traditional brokerage firms with branch offices with on-site managers and compliance personnel.
Did Voya Financial Advisor Misconduct Cause You Investment Losses?
When financial advisor misconduct has caused you to lose substantial value to your investment accounts, you have the right to seek reimbursement from the responsible parties. Voya Financial is responsible like any employer for its financial advisors acts and omissions. In addition, it has an independent duty to supervise its stockbrokers and investment advisors. These cases can be extremely complex, and so having the support of a reputable attorney who is experienced in recovering investment losses for investors is key to your success. Many customers make the mistake of contacting Voya Financial without representation with an attorney about their complaints and have their complaints denied.
Related Read: Can You Sue Your Brokerage Firm?
Consult With An Attorney Who Recovers Investment Losses Caused By Voya Financial Today!
The investment loss attorneys at The Law Offices of Robert Wayne Pearce, P.A., have helped countless investors over the last 40 years recover the losses from their investment accounts that were caused by broker negligence or misconduct. The firm has extensive experience with Voya Financial cases, and Attorney Pearce is committed to seeing that those responsible for the losses you have suffered are held fully accountable.
Give us a call at 800-732-2889. Let’s discuss your case and see what we can do to help you get the compensation you need and deserve.