Li-Lin Hsu, a former Ameriprise broker, was recently forced to pay the firm $675,000 over a customer complaint that the firm settled, according to a Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) arbitration panel. Ameriprise had previously filed a lawsuit alleging that Ms. Hsu used company stationery to pass herself off as an Ameriprise advisor, when she was not. She was fired from the firm in 2015. A client with the Glendale, California-based Ameriprise location, at which Hsu worked as a broker, sued the firm for not informing her that Hsu had been suspended “due to repeated violations of company policy and applicable law.” Hsu was accused of misappropriating the client’s investment funds. She had also been accused of “violating company policy related to maintaining a beneficiary relationship with a client, complaint handling, commingling of funds, and conducting business with a foreign client,” according to her public report with FINRA.

Ameriprise subsequently went after Hsu, filing a third-party arbitration claim against her. The customer received $675,000 in the settlement, after seeking $805,370 in damages. She withdrew her claim against the firm in April 2017. Ameriprise determined that Hsu was passing herself off as an employee of the firm in Facebook and LinkedIn profiles, and also posted images of the firm’s computer software and financial forms on her Facebook page, according to their lawsuit against her. The firm was granted a preliminary injunction in June after seeking a temporary restraining order and an injunction ordering Hsu to cease using its proprietary forms.

Hsu worked in the Glendale, California location from January 2006 until March 2015. She is no longer registered with RIA firm Transglobal Advisory in Pasadena, California, which is where she went after Ameriprise. She has another ongoing arbitration against her, involving claims that she advised clients to purchase a failing and unprofitable business for her personal gain, and that she illegally borrowed money from them. They are seeking $1 million in damages.

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