Wells Ordered to Pay New York Broker Best Practice Bonus
A Financial Industry Regulatory Authority arbitration panel has granted a veteran broker more than $95,000 that Wells Fargo Advisors owed him for meeting certain performance goals.
Edward J. Collins, who joined a Wells office in New York City in 2013 after 16 years at UBS Financial Services and 14 years at Lehman Brothers, filed the unusual arbitration claim in April 2017. According to a decision published on Finra’s dispute resolution website on Wednesday, he earned the Best Practice Award based on the Offer Summary he received five years ago.
The three-person arbitration panel declined Collins’ request for a more expansive explanation of their decision, which disputants can request for an extra fee. Wells opposed Collins’ motion for an explained decision, according to the award document.
Like many firms, Wells Fargo Advisors gives bonuses to brokers who meet certain sales-practice goals. The Best Practice award at Wells includes opening so-called Envision financial plans for customers as part of the sales process.
Reached at his Wells office in midtown Manhattan, Collins declined to discuss the decision, which he had not yet read. A Wells Fargo Advisors spokeswoman did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
In his claim, Collins sought $138,358 in compensatory damages plus punitive damages of almost $277,000, as well as attorneys’ fees and arbitration forum costs.
Citing the Best Practice Award referenced in Collins’ March 2013 offer summary, as well as Wells’ “practices and procedures with respect to such awards,” the three-person arbitration panel unanimously awarded him $96,851 but denied punitive damages and attorneys’ fees.
Philip C. Semprevivo, the lawyer who represented Collins, said he could not immediately comment on the decision.
Collins first registered as a securities representative with Lehman in July 1988, according to his BrokerCheck history, and subsequently worked at UBS from March 1997 until joining Wells in March 2013.