FINRA has suspended Maryland stockbroker Jill Meredith Carr $10,000 and suspended her for two years. Carr worked for Merrill Lynch in 2007 and 2008. Thereafter, she joined brokerage firm Waddell & Reed until her employment was terminated in July 2012 for forging customer signatures. Brokers forging customer signatures is one of the most egregious forms stockbroker fraud.

According to FINRA, Carr forged signatures of at least 15 Waddell & Reed customers on at least 24 forms. Carr also was found to have altered information on other customer account forms after the customers signed the forms.

Brokerage firms rely on customers’ stated investment objectives and profiles indicated on account forms to determine whether securities transactions in customer accounts are consistent with the customers’ investment objectives. So brokerage firms’ ability to supervise brokers’ conduct is undermined when brokers fraudulently alter customer account documents. It is very important that investors are aware of how their accounts are documented on brokerage firms’ internal records. Investors should request a copy of the firms’ internal records to make sure that their recorded investment objectives accurately reflect the investors’ true objectives.

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