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Securities Industry | Employment Disputes

Securities Industry | Employment Disputes

Peiffer Wolf has extensive experience representing current and former employees in cases such as employment discrimination, wrongful termination, defamation, breach of contract, and sexual harassment. In the Securities Industry, employment disputes may also include unpaid compensation, forfeited deferred compensation, promissory notes, and U-5 Form defamation claims.

If you are a broker, financial advisor or another Securities Industry professional facing employment disputes that are preventing you from changing jobs or working in your industry, you should Contact Us by calling 585-310-5140 or by filling out an online Contact Form for a FREE Consultation.

Securities Employment and Disputes | Do I have a case?

If you are unable to change jobs due to an employment dispute, or if an employment dispute with a former employer is preventing you from working, you should Contact Peiffer Wolf immediately.

Attorneys at Peiffer Wolf are currently evaluating the following types of Industry disputes:

Wrongful Termination

Wrongful termination is when the employer violates state and/or federal laws, or violates written/verbal employment stipulations. Wrongful termination can depend on state laws, but generally include (and it is not limited to):

  • Discrimination based on age, gender, race, sexual orientation, disability, etc.;
  • Harassment (physical, psychological, sexual, etc.);
  • Retaliation;
  • Whistleblowing;
  • Breach of Contract.

Deferred Compensation

Viewed by many as a way for companies to forcibly retain high performing employees, deferred compensation payments seem to be a rising trend. However, employees of many companies allegedly defer up to 15% of their compensation, depending on companies’ policies and the revenues they bring. In many cases, the wages won’t vest for 10 years, causing employees to allegedly give up some or the entirety of the deferred compensation if they leave the company before that. We believe this is in violation of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA).

If you are a current or former Raymond James, Charles Schwab, Fidelity, Merrill Lynch or TD Ameritrade employee, read more about these Deferred Compensation cases here.

Promissory Notes

Promissory notes are usually the result of an upfront payment received by the financial advisor/broker. These can become a problem when they are required to pay the remaining balance of the promissory notes, especially if this happens when they are about to depart the brokerage firm.

Termination Agreements & Restrictive Covenants

Brokers sometimes have employment agreements that keep them from working with their former clients. While this is typically done by firms to keep their brokers from taking confidential information to a new employer, Restrictive Covenants often prevent brokers from working altogether in the financial industry. When Termination Agreements and Restrictive Covenants are unreasonable, brokers should contact a lawyer to intervene on their behalf.

Form U4 & Form U5

Representatives of broker-dealers, investment advisers or issuers of securities must be registered with the appropriate jurisdictions and/or self-regulatory organizations (SROs). Form U4 is used to establish that registration. FINRA, other self-regulatory organizations (SROs) and jurisdictions use Form U5 (Uniform Termination Notice for Securities Industry Registration) to terminate registration and, if relevant, details why an individual left the firm. (FINRA)

If a Form contains misleading or false information, it can lead to an investigation and prevent the broker from being hired by another broker-dealer (or other companies). It is imperative to take action to prevent these Forms from becoming a problem in the process of getting a new job offer.

Other potential cases Peiffer Wolf can handle on behalf of brokers:

  • Regulatory Inquiry (by FINRA);
  • Raiding Claims;
  • Forgivable Loans.

Securities Employment and Disputes | FREE Consultation

If you are a broker, financial advisor or another Securities Industry professional facing employment disputes that are preventing you from changing jobs or even working in your industry, you should Contact Us by calling 585-310-5140 or by filling out an online Contact Form for a FREE Consultation.


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Yes. Please call us or use our contact form to request a Free Case Evaluation. We have a national team of attorneys and staff who look forward to speaking with you.

Typically, we represent clients on contingency fee agreements. If we take your case under a contingency fee arrangement, you won’t owe our firm any legal fees unless we are able to recover money for you.

Our contingency fee agreements are usually based on a percentage of the amount we recover for our clients. The contingency fee amount is determined by the type of case, our estimate of how long it will take to resolve your case, and our estimate of the litigation costs we will advance in your case. Each engagement agreement includes the details of the fee arrangement. Questions about our fee agreements are welcomed and encouraged.

In most litigation matters, it is extremely difficult – practically impossible – to predict how long it will take to resolve a particular case. Every case is different, and we will do our best to provide you with an estimate based on your case and our experience with similar cases. Moreover, we will do our best to keep you updated and manage expectations along the way.


We handle cases that change lives. Contact us today for a FREE consultation.

Attorney Joe Peiffer
Founding Partner