We’re very accustomed to talking about the intangible damages inflicted on victims of medical malpractice or negligent accidents. The legal and cultural concept here is “pain and suffering.” You’ve probably even heard of massive jury awards in recognition of how costly, in terms of loss of life or quality of life and future outlook, serious “pain and suffering” can be.
But what about the victims of financial fraud and broker misconduct? Don’t they experience significant emotional trauma from their ordeal? Isn’t it terribly upsetting and depressing to lose your hard-earned savings or retirement nest-egg to a fraudster or crooked investment scheme.
FINRA Issues Report on Non-Financial Losses from Fraud
Amazingly enough, we are only now beginning to recognize the full scope of indirect and non-financial damages suffered by victims of financial fraud. As a trail-blazing recent report by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) Investor Education Foundation indicates, nearly two-thirds of these victims reported experiencing trauma and hardship resulting from their encounter with financial fraud. Most commonly, victims cited severe stress, anxiety, loss of sleep, and depression.
According to FINRA, around $50 billion is lost every year in this country to financial fraud. And while it’s impossible to put a number on the “pain and suffering” of those who lost that staggering sum of money, FINRA’s research has identified a crucial issue and, perhaps, a way forward. However, the problem is that very, very few victims of fraud - even those suffering grave psychological or emotional turmoil - seek medical treatment for their conditions. And so, during a dispute, when it comes time to ask an arbitration panel for “pain and suffering,” investors and attorneys alike cannot establish with evidence the cost of those experiences.
Fraud Victims Suffering Serious Emotional Trauma Should Consult a Physician
The moral of the story here is that if you’ve suffered investment fraud and are experiencing anxiety, emotional distress, sleeplessness, or any other related condition, consult with a physician immediately. Not only will you receive the proper medical treatment, but you will be able to make a strong case for emotional and psychological damages in your future lawsuit.
If you or anyone you know has been the victim of broker misconduct or investment fraud, please contact the securities attorneys at The Green Firm immediately for a free consultation toll-free at 1-888-462-3330 or via email by clicking here.
For the full report on Non-traditional Costs of Financial Fraud, please click here.