SEC Processing of Complaints


On Apr. 19, SEC released bulletin on its handling of investor complaints.


  • Office of Investor Education and Advocacy (OIEA) bulletin on complaint processes.
  • On how it handles investor complaints, ways to resolve securities-related disputes.
  • Types of Complaints
  • Individual complaints made against brokers, brokerage firms, investment advisers,
    transfer agents, mutual funds, and other market participants, are received by SEC.
  • They could relate to any problem on investments, accounts, financial professionals.
  • Typical subjects include order-handling, trade execution, confirmations, dividends.
  • Also on fees, commissions, inaccurate or misleading disclosure, margin, suitability.
  • Investor must fill in a complaint form, and may send any additional documentation.
  • Handling Process
  • If the investor consents to OIEA’s sending the complaint to firm, OIEA will forward.
  • Then requests firm to send a written report to investor and OIEA, on issues raised.
  • SEC is not the investor’s attorney or personal representative, may refer complaints
    to the other Offices or Divisions within SEC, including the Division of Enforcement.
  • The Division of Enforcement will conduct its investigations, on a confidential basis.
  • OIEA will not update the investor on status of a complaint, or confirm its existence.
  • Use of Complaint Information
  • May forward complaint to other parts of SEC, or outside the SEC where appropriate.
  • Use the date in files, including complaints available for other government agencies.

Regulators SEC
Entity Types B/D; Corp; Depo; Exch; IA; Inv Co
Reference Inv Bul, 4/19/2017
Functions Client Money; Complaints; Compliance; Exams; Financial; Legal; Operations; Reporting
Countries United States of America
Products Custody; Corporate; Fund Mgt; Securities
Regions Am
Rule Type Guidance
Rule Date 4/19/2017
Effective Date 4/19/2017
Rule Id 31943
Linked to N/A
Report Issue 5/1/2017
Report Section US Investment

Last substantive update on 04/20/2017