Jose J. Perez Sanctioned for Impersonating Client's Brother to Request Retirement Funds Transfer; Requests Transfer from Wrong Account

Attorney Advising Disclaimer

FINRA fined and suspended former Voya Financial Advisors and MetLife Securities representative Jose J Perez for directing his assistant to impersonate a customer in order to effect a transfer of pension funds from one retirement account to another. The AWC indicates that as a result of the impersonation and transfer request, funds were transferred out of the incorrect account. Furthermore, MetLife wrote that Perez admitted to initiating the transfer without his customer's consent.

AWC #2015044718001

The report states that while associated with MetLife, one of Perez (CRD #2477427)'s customers advised him that she was retiring, and requested that he transfer pension funds held by a third party to the customer's IRA account at MetLife.

Perez purportedly attempted to fulfill the request in a phone call with his assistant to the third party company and, instead of using their real names, Perez claimed he was the client's brother, while his assistant impersonated Perez's client. The investigation indicates that during this phone call, Perez's assistant stated that she (posing as the client) was authorizing her brother to provide the company with direction as to the retirement funds. Once given this "authorization," false brother Perez directed the third party company to transfer funds to the IRA account at MetLife.

According to FINRA, Perez did not know that his client held two retirement accounts with the third party company—one a 401(k) plan and the other a pension fund account—and, as a result of Perez's direction during the phone call, the funds held in the 401(k) account were incorrectly transferred to MetLife, instead of the funds held in the pension account, as had been his client's request.

Perez's BrokerCheck report indicates that MetLife discharged him after he "admitted to initiating the transfer of a customer's account without her consent."

If you have invested with former MetLife Securities representative Jose J Perez or with any broker or financial adviser whose impersonation of you (or your family members) has proven harmful to your accounts or interests due to unauthorized transfers or inappropriate withdrawals in your accounts, please call The Law Offices of Jonathan W. Evans & Associates at (800) 699-1881 for an investigation and consultation.

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