FINANCIAL FRAUD IS OUR SPECIALTY

Fraud is unfortunately all-too-common in Corporate America.  Innocent people can lose money on their investments through no fault of their own, e.g., if they are advised into unsuitable investments or are invested in a company that failed to disclose important information or where managers aren't maximizing the value of your investment.  This isn't just bad luck; it's an opportunity to recover your money and get justice.

Shareholder Rights Attorneys specialize in securities fraud, shareholder lawsuits, and securities litigation.  We investigate and seek recovery for damages where there has been wrongdoing, especially financial wrongdoing, on the part of corporations, their board of directors, and/or their corporate officers.  

We have successfully represented both individual and institutional investors and our clients benefit from our special expertise in shareholder class action lawsuits and shareholder derivative litigation.

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Securities Fraud

You may have grounds to sue a corporation and its officers and collect damages if they have engaged in securities fraud.  To bring such a claim, you would need to have been a shareholder of a publicly traded company at the time that that company intentionally misrepresented, concealed, or falsified material financial information that it was under an obligation to disclose, and that these actions or inactions caused you to lose money, or not earn as much money as you would have otherwise earned had these actions or inactions not occured.

Securities Fraud Class Action Lawsuits

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A class action securities fraud lawsuit could occur when a number of shareholders have similar claims against a company for securities fraud.  Rather than each shareholder having to sue the company individually, joining together in a class allows stockholders to make one consolidated claim.  This can distribute the cost of a lawsuit over many individual plaintiffs, reducing the cost of litigation.

Most class action shareholder lawsuits are brought forward on a contingency basis.  This means that some or all of attorney’s fees are awarded by the court as a percentage of whatever money shareholders recover for your claim.  An experienced, qualified attorney will likely only take the case if he or she thinks that there is a good chance that you will prevail. This is another reason why it is very important to work with an attorney who is experienced with securities fraud class action lawsuits.

Shareholder Derivative Actions

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If you are a shareholder of a company whose directors and officers have acted improperly, you may have cause to bring a suit to recover damages and/or to compel specific actions.  The directors of a company are required to act in the company’s best interests. If they don’t, and especially if they are putting their personal interests above that of shareholders, shareholders may be able to sue them for damages.

For example, a derivative suit could be filed if a company’s management had used corporate resources for their personal gain. Often times such suits are preceded by direct suits to examine corporate books and records.

Shareholder Rights Attorneys deep experience in evaluating what sorts of claims might be successful in these situations, as well as in estimating the range of potential damages awarded.

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Normally it would the responsibility of a company’s management to defend the interests of the company.  However, if the corporation’s management fails to do so, as could be the case if it is the company’s directors and/or officers themselves who are alleged to have committed the wrongdoing, the law permits shareholders to sue directors and/or officers on behalf of the corporation.  

Derivative actions are not limited to being filed against directors and/or officers of the corporation; they can be filed against third parties generally where appropriate causes of action exist and where the corporation has declined to do so.

In a derivative suit, the shareholder is the plaintiff and the corporation is the defendant, although if the lawsuit is successful, damages would generally go to the company, not to the shareholders directly.  This structure exists because a derivative lawsuit generally includes as defendants the third parties who are alleged to have injured the corporation and/or who have benefited inappropriately from corporate action or inaction.  In these situations, even though the corporation and the third parties are all defendants, their interests will often diverge and the corporation will often have separate counsel from the third parties alleged to have committed wrongdoing.  The corporation may or may take an active role in the lawsuit, and may argue that the behavior of other defendants did or did not cause it harm.

FINRA Arbitration and mediation

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If you have a dispute with a brokerage firm (e.g., failure to follow your instructions or purchasing unsuitable investments on your behalf), you can file a request to FINRA (Financial Industry Regulatory Authority) for arbitration or mediation.  In either situation, it is strongly recommended to work with an attorney experienced with shareholder rights and with the FINRA process.

 

 

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