More On Legal & Compliancefrom The Advisor's Professional Library
- Where Are We Headed? The ultimate compliance goal is to help ensure that everyone associated with an advisory firm acts ethically at all times. Advisors and RIAs should do the right thing, even when regulators are not looking over their shoulders.
- Client Commission Practices and Soft Dollars RIAs should always evaluate whether the products and services they receive from broker-dealers are appropriate. The SEC suggested that an RIAs failure to stay within the scope of the Section 28(e) safe harbor may violate the advisors fiduciary duty to clients, so RIAs must evaluate their soft dollar relationships on a regular basis to ensure they are disclosed properly and that they do not negatively impact the best execution of clients transactions.
J. Bradley Bennett has been chosen to serve as the new head of FINRA’s Enforcement Division. The announcement was made Thursday, and Bennett will assume his new post on Jan. 1. He will be taking over from James Shorris, acting chief of enforcement; Shorris has served in the position since March, when Susan Merrill departed the organization.
Bennett, a partner at Baker Botts in Washington since 2001, specialized in financial and securities law violations. At FINRA, he will head up a staff of about 300 enforcement personnel in 17 offices throughout the U.S. He will be reporting to Stephen Luparello, vice chairman of FINRA.
Luparello said in a statement, "Brad will be a forceful advocate for investors, especially in dealing with those who would seek to violate the rules. I have known Brad for many years and he stands out for his understanding of securities laws."
Richard Ketchum, chairman and CEO of FINRA, said, "Brad will bring extensive knowledge and experience in dealing with violations of securities rules to FINRA at this critical time. It is imperative that FINRA aggressively deal with wrongdoing in the industry to help rebuild investor trust and confidence in the markets."
Bennett began his career at the SEC, where he served in the Division of Enforcement as a senior attorney. Before joining Baker Botts, he was an attorney at Miller, Cassidy, Larocca & Lewin. Currently he is an adjunct professor of securities regulation at Catholic University's Columbus School of Law.