Michael Patrick Spolar of Orlando Florida a stockbroker formerly registered with International Assets Advisory LLC has been suspended for fifteen months from associating with any Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) member in any capacity founded on findings that (1) Spolar effected trades in the investment accounts of International Assets Advisory customers without authorization from either customers or the securities broker dealer and (2) Spolar falsified customers’ signatures on options letters provided to International Assets Advisory to effect transactions in customer accounts. Letter of Acceptance Waiver and Consent No. 2018057366101 (July 26, 2019).

According to the AWC, between August of 2017 and September of 2017, options trades had been executed by Spolar in the accounts of two International Assets Advisory customers. During this time, the firm’s procedures and policies reportedly disallowed stockbrokers from effecting any trades on a discretionary basis unless the customer furnished written authorization to the firm and the firm permitted the trading by accepting the account as discretionary. The AWC stated that Spolar received no written authorization from customers warranting his trading in their accounts, and International Assets Advisory never deemed the customers’ accounts approved for purposes of the trades Spolar placed through exercising discretion. FINRA found Spolar’s conduct violative of FINRA Rules 2010, 2360(b)(18)(A) and National Association of Securities Dealers (NASD) Rule 2510(b).

The AWC revealed that Spolar also submitted false documentation to the firm in regard to his trades. Apparently, the trades Spolar placed without authorization were marked by him as unsolicited. Spolar evidently provided the firm fabricated Unsolicited Options Letters – forms utilized by the firm which needed to be signed by customers in order for unsolicited options trades to be effected in their accounts. FINRA noted that the Unsolicited Options Letters instructed customers to confirm whether they knew about the risks of options trading, possessed adequate knowledge about the investments, and had sufficient financial resources to trade options.

The Unsolicited Options Letters also instructed customers to confirm whether the options trades were solicited or somehow recommended by the stockbroker. Critically, the AWC stated that the signatures of customers on those documents had been forged by Spolar before they were submitted to International Assets Advisory. FINRA found Spolar’s conduct violative of FINRA Rules 2010 and 4511.

This is not the first time that Spolar has been sanctioned by FINRA for unauthorized trading. Particularly, Spolar was suspended by FINRA personnel based upon findings that when Spolar was associated with International Assets Advisory, he exercised discretionary authority in customer accounts; conduct violative of FINRA Rules 2010 and NASD Rule 2510(b). Letter of Acceptance Waiver and Consent No. 2016050379401 (May 16, 2017).

FINRA Public Disclosure also confirms that Spolar is referenced in thirteen customer initiated investment related disputes that concern accusations of his misconduct when he was associated with securities broker dealers including International Assets Advisory and LPL Financial LLC. Particularly, a customer initiated investment related arbitration claim concerning Spolar’s activities has been resolved for $65,000.00 in damages founded on allegations that trades were inappropriately effected on margin and investment recommendations made to the customer failed to be suitable specifically concerning the stock trades placed in the customer’s account. FINRA Arbitration No. 17-03304 (July 2, 2018).

Thereafter, a customer filed an investment related arbitration claim regarding Spolar’s activities where the customer sought $641,918.00 in damages supported by allegations that the customer’s account had been administered negligently; International Assets Advisory failed to supervise the options, stock and over-the-counter equities trades placed in the customer’s account; and the customer was defrauded. FINRA Arbitration No. 18-03180 (Sept. 18, 2018).

Moreover, a customer filed an investment related arbitration claim concerning Spolar’s conduct in which the customer requested damages estimated to exceed $5,000.00 founded on accusations that Ohio Securities Act and Securities Exchange Act of 1934 had been violated; contractual obligations were breached; the customer’s account had been negligently supervised; the customer’s account was handled in an inappropriate matter; and fiduciary obligations had been breached in regard to options and over-the-counter equities trades placed in the customer’s account during the time that Spolar was associated with International Assets Advisory. FINRA Arbitration No. 18-03447 (Oct. 1, 2018).

Furthermore, Spolar is referenced in a customer initiated investment related arbitration claim where the customer sought $350,000.00 in damages based upon allegations that fiduciary duties owed to the customer had been breached; contractual obligations were breached; the customer’s account had been handled by Spolar with poor care; and options and equities transactions were executed in violation of Ohio Securities Act. FINRA Arbitration No. 18-03781 (Nov. 1, 2018). Another customer initiated investment related arbitration claim in regard to Spolar’s conduct has been resolved for $17,500.00 in damages based upon accusations of inappropriate investment advice and margin trading by Spolar during the time he was employed by LPL Financial. FINRA Arbitration No. 18-01016 (Jan. 16, 2019).

Spolar was discharged by LPL Financial LLC effective April 13, 2015 supported by accusations that trades were effected by him on a discretionary basis; conduct violative of the firm’s policies. He had been associated with International Assets Advisory between April 23, 2015 and November 9, 2017, at which point he was discharged founded on allegations that customers of the firm had been contacted by Spolar during the period in which he was suspended by FINRA in all capacities.

The information contained herein has been obtained from reliable sources however may not be accurate and is not guaranteed by us. Readers are encouraged to undertake their own independent investigation and evaluation of the relevant facts. All claims and allegations are subject to adjudication, decisions may be subject to appeal, and no inference is intended, nor should any inference be made from any information contained herein from any source.

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Guiliano Law Group, P.C.

Our practice is limited to the representation of investors. Over the last three decades, we have recovered more than a hundred million dollars for more than 1,000 injured investors from all over the United States and several foreign countries. We accept representation purely on a contingent fee basis, meaning there is no cost to you unless we make a recovery for you. There is never any charge for a confidential consultation or an evaluation of your claim. For more information, contact us at (877) SEC-ATTY.

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