Bank of America’s brokerage unit has agreed to settle a state regulator’s complaint that it sold inappropriate variable annuities to older seniors in 2003 and 2004.
Bank of America Investment Services Inc., the brokerage unit of the bank, in Charlotte, N.C., says the agreement applies to customers who were 78 years of age or older when they bought the VAs. The company says it agreed to give those customers a chance to get their money back without paying the customary surrender charges.
The agreement with the state’s Securities Division applies to all customers in the age group who bought the VAs in 2003 and 2004 from BAI or its Quick & Reilly subsidiary.
The agreement will be extended to qualified buyers in other states, the company says.
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In February, the Massachusetts Securities Division charged Citizens Bank, Providence, R.I., with selling VAs to customers over 75 years old without telling them they would have to pay surrender charges if they cashed in their VAs before they matured.
The division filed similar charges against a number of other banks and brokerage firms, including Bank of America. The bank bought Fleet Bank, Boston, and its Quick & Reilly brokerage unit last year.