Stephenie Ashley Collins (also known as Stephenie Ashley Purvine), of Cordell, Oklahoma, a stockbroker registered with State Farm VP Management Corporation, has been barred from associating with any Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) member in any capacity because Collins converted funds. Letter of Acceptance, Waiver, and Consent No. 2023078014501 (April 13, 2023).
According to the AWC, while registered with FINRA through State Farm, Collins also served as a State Farm Insurance Agent, selling insurance products provided by SFMAIC, an affiliate of the firm. Based on SFMAIC’s guidelines, Collins maintained a premium fund account, which was a bank account under her name. It was mandatory for her to deposit premium payments from insurance customers into this account. The AWC stated that the premium payments made by customers and deposited into the premium fund account became SFMAIC’s property. This account was exclusively designated for customer premiums, and Collins had no authority to utilize premium funds of customers for any other reason.
The AWC stated that between June of 2022 and December of 2022, Collins engaged in the conversion of funds by improperly withholding $13,000.00 from the customer premium fund account. These funds should have been deposited into the account but were instead used by Collins for her business and personal needs. Also, Collins fabricated inaccurate deposit records for the account. Therefore, FINRA found that Collins violated FINRA Rule 2010.
Collins’s registration with State Farm VP Management Corporation was terminated on February 27, 2023. Collins was permitted to resign by State Farm VP Management Corporation on February 17, 2023, based upon allegations that Collins failed to comply with procedures of the firm concerning premium fund accounts.