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FINRA Bars Ex-Securities America Broker Who Signed Dead Client’s Name

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What You Need to Know

  • The former Securities America rep was terminated by the company in 2016 over allegations he signed his dead client’s name.
  • FINRA investigated the ex-broker's termination, and he declined to provide documents it requested.
  • Failing to produce documents in an investigation is the most common cause of a FINRA bar.

A former Securities America broker who was accused of signing his deceased client’s name on multiple documents against company policy has been barred by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority after he refused to cooperate with FINRA’s investigation into his termination, according to the industry self-regulatory organization.

Without admitting or denying FINRA’s findings, William H. Dixon signed a FINRA letter of acceptance, waiver and consent on April 27, in which he consented to the imposition of FINRA’s sanction against him. FINRA signed the letter Tuesday.

Dixon was associated with Advisor Group’s Securities America division as a general securities representative and general securities principal from September 2016 until October 2019, according to his report on FINRA’s BrokerCheck website.

He was terminated by Securities America on Sept. 16, 2016, after he was the “subject of allegations that he signed his deceased client’s signature and initials to multiple annuity surrender forms,” according to a disclosure by the firm on his BrokerCheck report.

Dixon “admitted to the alleged activity and was subsequently discharged for violating the Firm’s policies and procedures regarding the use of nongenuine client signatures,” according to Securities America.

Advisor Group and Matthew Fornshell, a partner at the law firm Ice Miller in Columbus, Ohio, who represented Dixon in the matter, did not immediately respond to requests for comment on Thursday.

FINRA started investigating Dixon’s termination in October 2019, it said. On April 1, 2021, FINRA sent Dixon a request for the production of documents pursuant to FINRA Rule 8210.

Dixon acknowledged that he received FINRA’s request but stated he would not produce the documents requested, through his counsel’s statements to FINRA over the phone, in an email to FINRA on April 16, and by the FINRA AWC agreement, it said.

By refusing to produce the documents as requested, Dixon violated FINRA Rules 8210 and 2010 governing standards of commercial honor and principles of trade, according to FINRA. Not producing documents to FINRA when requested is the most common offense leading to a bar from the organization, it reported last year.

Pictured: FINRA building in Philadelphia. (Photo: Adobe Stock)