Rochester, New York (PRWEB) April 05, 2014
Patrick W. Chapin and Christopher B. Birli, two investment professionals, are being investigated by the Peiffer Rosca securities practice lawyers following allegations by securities regulators that they placed investors in unsuitable variable annuity investments, misrepresented such investments to their customers, and obtained substantial sales commissions for themselves.
Chapin and Birli focused their business on servicing State University of New York (SUNY) employees who participated in the SUNY retirement program, according to allegations in a Complaint filed against them in the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority Office of Hearing Officers, case number 2012032120001 filed on March 27, 2014, titled FINRA Department of Enforcement vs Patrick W. Chapin and Christopher B. Birli.
Regulatory documents in the above-mentioned case reviewed by attorneys Alan Rosca, Jason Kane, and Joe Peiffer allege that Chapin and Birli recommended that 45 of their SUNY customers switch their existing MetLife variable annuities contained within their SUNY retirement accounts with new MetLife variable annuities contained in MetLife IRA accounts held outside the SUNY retirement program.
Chapin and Birli’s firm generally prohibited the direct exchange of the annuities held by Chapin and Birli’s customers, but allowed such exchanges on an exception basis, according to allegations in the regulators’ Complaint.
Patrick Chapin and Christopher Birli allegedly circumvented MetLife’s restrictions by conducting a two-step transaction as follows: (1) Chapin and Birli recommended that their customers surrender their original annuity and use the funds to purchase a product offered by TIAA-Cref that was available to them in the SUNY retirement program; (2) Chapin and Birli had their customers wait at least 90 days, and then had the customers sell the TIAA-Cref products and use the funds to purchase the new annuity in a MetLife IRA, all according to the FINRA Complaint.
Chapin and Birli allegedly placed their customers in unsuitable investments by switching their annuities because the new annuities came with seven-year surrender schedules, therefore affecting the annuity’s liquidity, according to the complaint. Customers also lost any death benefits that had accrued in excess of their contract value when they purchased the TIAA-Cref product, according to allegations in the regulators’ Complaint.
Chapin and Birli each allegedly received a 7.15% commission when they switched their customers’ annuities while their customers paid surrender charges and lost death benefits, according to the FINRA Complaint.
“Securities professionals have a duty to put their customers’ interests above their own, and avoid churning investor accounts to generate sales commissions for themselves,” said Jason Kane, a partner with the Peiffer Rosca law firm in New York state. “We will continue to hold liable those investment advisors who disregard their duties and make inappropriate investment recommendations to their customers,” said Kane.
The Peiffer Rosca securities attorneys often represent investors who lose money as a result of stockbroker misconduct, Ponzi schemes, or investment fraud. They are currently investigating Patrick Chapin and Christopher Birli on behalf of their investors. They take most cases of this type on a contingency fee basis and advance the case costs, and only get paid for their fees and costs out of money they recover for their clients.
Investors who believe they lost money as a result of investment fraud or misconduct may contact the securities practice lawyers at Peiffer Rosca, Alan Rosca, Joe Peiffer, or Jason Kane, for a free, no-obligation evaluation of their recovery options, at 888-998-0520.
Investors may visit http://www.chapinbirliinvestors.com for more information about this case.
Attorney advertising. Attorneys Jason Kane, Alan Rosca, and Joseph Peiffer are licensed in New York, Ohio, and Louisiana, respectively. Visit http://www.securitieslitigators.com for important disclosures.