What is a Securities Lawyer?
A securities lawyer is a lawyer that specializes in securities law. Securities include stocks, bonds and mutual funds.
Securities are investments that are purchased by individuals who are attempting to make a profit. Stocks are purchased in a corporation and provide individuals part ownership of the company.
Securities law is very complex. It is governed by various federal and state regulations that oversee the conduct of investors.
Securities laws were enacted due to the unique and confidential information that is available to investors. These laws ensure that insiders with information regarding securities do not abuse this information by making investments on information that is not public knowledge.
Securities lawyers serve many functions in the area of securities law. Your lawyer can assist you if you have been accused of violating securities laws. Your lawyer can also help you recover if you have been harmed by the actions of the company from which you purchased stocks.
Why is it Important to Have a Securities Attorney?
It is essential to have an experienced securities attorney for any securities issue you may have. Securities laws include multiple federal laws and regulations governing the sale, purchase, and creation of security interests. These rules derive from the concept that all investors, whether private individuals or large institutions, should have access to basic facts about an investment prior to purchase.
If you have been accused of violating securities laws by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), it is imperative you contact a securities lawyer as soon as possible, as the penalties may be severe. The penalties can range from years in prison to hundreds of thousands of dollars, even millions of dollars in fines, depending on the circumstances of the case.
If you are an investor who has been harmed by a company who committed securities violations, a securities lawyer can help you recover. Your lawyer can evaluate your case, advise you on the steps you can take, and represent you during any court proceedings.
It is important to note that some claims have a statute of limitations that may prevent you from recovering if you wait too long. You should contact an attorney as soon as possible after you become aware of the securities issue.
What are Some Other Issues Related to Securities Law?
The SEC is responsible for the enforcement of securities laws in the United States. Their mission is to protect investors and maintain the integrity of securities markets by requiring public companies to disclose meaningful financial and other information to the public so they can evaluate security investments.
Every year, the SEC brings 400-500 civil enforcement actions against individuals and companies for violating securities laws. Infractions include insider trading, accounting fraud, and providing false or misleading information. Violating securities laws can result in incarceration and substantial fines.
Insider tradingoccurs when there are transactions in securities of a publicly held corporation by individuals with inside or advance information on which the trading is based. Typically, the trader is an insider that has an employment relationship or some other relationship of trust with the corporation.
For example, if an employee of Corporation A learns the company will enter a merger agreement with a rival competitor, and uses this knowledge to purchase shares of stock with the expectation that their value will increase after the merger agreement becomes public knowledge, the employee is abusing their insider status and has engaged in insider trading.
Investors have options if they wish to be compensated for or to punish companies or individuals that engage insecurities fraud. An investor may:
- Notify law enforcement. The Justice Department has a long history of prosecuting federal securities crimes;
- Begin a class action lawsuit. If multiple investors are injured by a company’s abuse of insider trading or poor accounting practices, the investors can initiate a class action lawsuit; and
- Contact the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).
If you believe there may have been a securities fraud issue or another violation related to your investment, it is always best to seek the advice of an attorney. They can review the information you have and advise you on the proper steps forward to recover for your losses.
What are the Benefits of Hiring a Securities Lawyer?
There are many benefits of hiring a securities lawyer as they can provide many different types of services related to securities. If you are looking to invest in securities, you can consult with an attorney to ensure your investment is sound. If you have suffered a financial loss as a result of securities violations by a company, your lawyer can help you recover. If you have been accused of a securities violation, your lawyer can defend you in court and fight for the best outcome in your case.
Securities laws are very complex and you should not try to handle them alone. A securities lawyer will review your situation, provide advice on how to move forward, and represent you during any court proceedings.