Wednesday’s Word: Phishing

By Dylan Donley, Spring 2014 Graduate Research Assistant

Phishing is a type of scam in which fraudsters (a.k.a. phishers) use spam emails or other types of communication methods (e.g., automated voicemail messages or cold calls) to obtain sensitive personal and financial information from unsuspecting individuals. Phishers are able to obtain this information through the use of false or exaggerated statements or claims in order to force people to react and give up something of value or some right that they hold.

For more information about phishing, read more here.

Fall 2014 Students Start in Clinic

LAW_IACThe Investor Advocacy Clinic kicked off its fall 2014 semester with five new student interns, Ryan Corbin, Brittany DeDiego, Kori Eskridge, Kristina Ludwig and Christopher Pugh.  This semester, former spring 2014 student intern Patricia Uceda will continue as a Graduate Research Assistant. Continue reading

Investor Advocacy Clinic. Protecting. Educating.

The Investor Advocacy Clinic protects and educates investors.

We protect investors by providing free legal services and representation to certain eligible investors who may have suffered losses at the hands of their stockbrokers.

drspresentationWe educate investors by making free presentations to all audiences — from beginning investors to retirees with prior investing experience — to help the public avoid investment fraud.

Would you like a free case evaluation?

Are you interested in the Investor Advocacy Clinic making an investor education presentation to your group?

Learn more about us and how to contact us through our Georgia State Law Investor Advocacy Clinic brochure.


Wednesday’s Word: Ponzi Scheme

By Dylan Donley, Spring 2014 Graduate Research Assistant

A Ponzi scheme is an investment scam that involves the payment of purported returns to existing investors from funds contributed by new investors. Fraudsters tend to advertise these types of scams by promising to invest funds from investors in opportunities with high returns and no risks, and continue to attempt to attract new investors in order to make the promised payments to earlier stage investors. In this way, fraudsters essentially create a pyramid of investors who have provided funding at various stages, with the newest investors paying the older investors. Ponzi schemes tend to collapse when the fraudsters are no longer able to recruit new investors or when a large number of investors asks to cash out.

For more information about Ponzi schemes, read more here.

Investor Advocacy Clinic Evaluating Potential Cases

LAW_IACHave you lost money because of possible stockbroker misconduct?  Are you unable to find a lawyer because your claims are too small?  Georgia State University College of Law’s Investor Advocacy Clinic may be able to help.  Call us at 404.413.9270.  We are conducting intake and evaluating cases now.

The Georgia State University College of Law’s Investor Advocacy Clinic provides legal services to small investors with claims against their broker-dealers who are not able to find legal representation due to the size of their claims. Law students, under the supervision of a faculty member who is a Georgia-licensed attorney, represent investors in handling disputes with their broker-dealers in FINRA proceedings.  You may be eligible for our services if you have a claim of $100,000 or less, have no major assets other than your home and vehicle, are a Georgia resident and have been unsuccessful in obtaining an attorney to represent you.

The clinic lacks the resources to accept every eligible case. A decision not to take your case is not a decision about the merits of your particular matter.

Wednesday’s Word: Penny Stock

By Dylan Donley, Spring 2014 Graduate Research Assistant

A penny stock, while not necessary trading at one cent, is a common share of a small public company that is not traded on a major public exchange and is traded at a low price (generally less than five dollars a share). Penny stocks are listed on the Over the Counter Bulletin Board (OTCBB), which lists many equity securities that are not traded on a national exchange. While penny stocks are inexpensive to purchase, such stocks are often subject to substantial volatility in price and manipulation.

For more information about penny stocks, read more here and here.

Wednesday’s Word: Affinity Fraud

By Dylan Donley, Spring 2014 Graduate Research Assistant

Affinity fraud refers to investment scams that prey upon members of identifiable groups, such as religious, ethnic, or military communities, the elderly, or professional groups, by pretending to be or actually being a member of such groups. Affinity fraudsters seek to manipulate the trust, friendship, and esprit de corps found in close-knit groups and use it to their advantage to sell fraudulent investments. In some cases, affinity fraudsters even enlist respected community, religious, or military leaders from within a group to spread the word about a scam and convince other members that a fraudulent investment is legitimate.

For more information about affinity fraud, read more here, here and here.