Christopher Duke Bennett (CRD#: 2510231) is a registered broker who is licensed to sell securities in 19 different U.S. States, including California, Florida, Georgia, Texas, and New York. Mr. Bennett has been employed at J.J.B. Hilliard, W.L. Lyons, LLC (Hilliard Lyons) for 22 years.
On February 16th, 2018, a FINRA Arbitration panel that was based in Louisville, Kentucky ordered Hilliard Lyons and Christopher Bennett Duke to pay a former customer a total of $445,000.00 in financial compensation.
The Allegations Against Christopher Duke Bennett
When a complaint goes through FINRA arbitration, a certain level of confidentiality is given to all parties involved in the case. As such, only basic facts are known about the proceedings. To start, we know the causes of actions that were asserted by the claimant (the investor) against Mr. Bennett and Hilliard Lyons. In this case, the investor alleged that Mr. Bennett and his member firm:
- Breached fiduciary duty;
- Executed unauthorized transactions;
- Recommended unsuitable investments;
- Churned the account;
- Misrepresented material facts; and
- Omitted material facts.
In the official arbitration decision, the panel notes that the investor alleged that Mr. Bennett made trades without her approval, and that those trades were unsuitable for her individual needs. Specifically, the transactions were too risky for how old she was and for her long-term financial goals. Upon hearing all evidence, the FINRA arbitration panel awarded the investor $445,000 in total compensation.
BrokerCheck: Pending Disputes
In the aforementioned case, the investor filed for arbitration in March of 2017 and the claim was resolved in February of 2018. Since the date of that filing, two more customers have brought claims against Christopher Bennett. According to official information provided by BrokerCheck, these two customer disputes are still pending as of March 1st, 2018.
On August 7th, 2017, an investor filed a complaint, alleging that Mr. Bennett failed to properly diversify their portfolio; as a result the investor was exposed to unnecessary risk. This investor is seeking $311,455.00 in financial compensation. While the case is not settled, Mr. Bennett and Hilliard Lyons have responded by noting that they “vehemently deny the Claimant’s allegations and believe they are without merit.”
On January 26th, 2018, an investor filed a complaint, alleging that Mr. Bennett breached his fiduciary duty and made material misrepresentations in regards to the suitability of certain securities. The investor alleges that the unsuitable investments resulted in significant financial losses. In connection with these broker negligence allegations, the investor is seeking $5 million in financial compensation. As of March 1st, 2018, neither Mr. Bennett nor Hilliard Lyons has yet supplied FINRA with any public comment on this matter.
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