Four Years Later, Lessons from the Madoff Ponzi Scheme Still Relevant to Investor Protection
This week marks the fourth anniversary of the Bernie Madoff Ponzi scheme – one of the largest Ponzi investment schemes in U.S. history.
In December 2008, the unraveling of Bernie Madoff's Ponzi scheme turned the investment world upside down. Investors, investment firms, regulators, and charities suffered catastrophic losses. Though Madoff will be spending the rest of his life in prison for his actions, other con artists continue to cheat investors out of their hard-earned money in new investment schemes nearly every week.
Thankfully, every cloud – even a massive thunderhead like Madoff’s Ponzi scheme – has a silver lining; by paying attention to how Madoff conned investors we can learn a lot about how to avoid falling victim to an investment scam.
The Madoff Ponzi scam also did change how the SEC handles securities fraud. The SEC hopes these rules and policy changes will mean more efficient investigations into securities fraud, stronger cases against the people or entities responsible for investment fraud, and that US investors are better protected.
Most importantly, Madoff’s scheme has taught us that we need to:
- Ask questions.
- Verify the answers.
- Get everything in writing.
There’s no sure way to prevent investment fraud, but doing those three things will go a long way toward helping you avoid losing your money in bad investments.
If you need help coming up with questions to ask an investment advisor, click here.
Use Brightscope or FINRA’s newly enhanced BrokerCheck to verify the answers. And, make sure you know how to read and understand the investment’s prospectus and your account statements.
If you feel you’ve uncovered a problem or that you may have been the victim of investment fraud, contact one of our experienced securities arbitration attorneys today.
About our law firm:
Meyer Wilson represents individuals across the country who have been harmed by investment fraud. All of our cases are handled on a contingency fee basis and we never request a retainer of any kind. Contact us for more information or complete the online form on the top of this page and we will respond promptly.