Over the past 20 years I have focused primarily on investor litigation as both counsel and as a forensic expert in arbitration.
The common thread in virtually all investor disputes is that the investor, the adviser, or both never understood or simply misunderstood the risks of the recommendation. Conventional advice is often misapplied with investors unaware.
Many who suffered losses or depleted accounts during retirement were unaware of the risks until it was too late. Many had accountants and received monthly statements and filed taxes.
In recent years, private placements, non-public, non-liquid securities have been heavily promoted to investors unaware of the credit impairment they cause that leverages their risk.
It is common for ex-spouses, trust administrators, and trustees to bring claims against brokers for account depletion caused not simply by the market but by taking monthly distributions erroneously believed to be reasonable and safe.
I could continue but the simple truth is that most financial losses occur due to a failure to understand risk from the outset. I'll get into this in the months to come.