Suzanne Hagmeyer, of Naperville, Illinois, a former stockbroker with World Equity Group, has been fined $5,000.00 and suspended from associating with any Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) member firm in any capacity after consenting to findings that she made misstatements to customers concerning variable annuity transactions. Letter of Acceptance, Waiver and Consent, No. 2013036907001 (Dec. 18, 2016).

According to the AWC, from June of 2010 to July of 2011, at which time Hagmeyer was registered with World Equity Group, she put together variable annuity switch forms for customers, which compared customers’ existing annuities with prospective annuities offered through Hagmeyer. Apparently, the forms, which had been completed in reference to twenty-four transactions, were acknowledged and signed by Hagmeyer and provided to her firm to be reviewed.

The AWC indicated that information pertaining to customers’ existing annuity fees and surrender penalties had been contained within the variable annuity switch forms, and utilized by Hagmeyer to justify her position on customers switching from existing annuities to new products. However, in at least twenty-three transactions in which the forms were completed, Hagmeyer did not properly communicate what customers would pay in the way of surrender penalties if customers wished to transfer their annuities to new products offered through Hagmeyer.

The AWC revealed that customers’ existing policy surrender penalties were understated in twenty-three of the twenty-four transactions. Evidently, Hagmeyer indicated that the customers would pay anywhere from $400.00 to $3,500.00 less in surrender penalties than customers were potentially required to pay. FINRA stated that Hagmeyer’s misstatements in this regard led her firm’s records and books to contain inaccuracies. Accordingly, FINRA found that Hagmeyer’s conduct was violative of FINRA Rule 2010 and NASD Rule 3010.

FINRA Public Disclosure reveals that Hagmeyer has been named in six events concerning allegations of misconduct. Particularly, on October 21, 1993, a customer initiated investment related arbitration action involving Hagmeyer’s conduct was settled for $22,954.00 in damages based upon allegations that Hagmeyer made misrepresentations to the customer concerning AG Spanos Limited Partnership. Subsequently, on July 1, 2011, a customer initiated investment related arbitration claim concerning Hagmeyer’s activities was resolved for $14,900.00 in damages based upon allegations that Hagmeyer committed misconduct in reference to variable annuity transactions which customers purchased.

On April 18, 2013, another customer arbitration action regarding Hagmeyer’s involvement was settled for $8,667.66 in damages based upon allegations that Hagmeyer caused the customer to pay excessive surrender penalties on investment or insurance products. On June 11, 2013, another customer initiated investment related arbitration claim involving Hagmeyer’s conduct was settled for $104,500.00 in damages based upon allegations that Hagmeyer effected annuity transfers which were not suitable for the customer.

Hagmeyer’s registration with World Equity Group, Inc. ended in April of 2012. From January of 2013 to December of 2016, Hagmeyer was registered with Kingsbury Capital, Inc.

Guiliano Law Group

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