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How to Know You’re Working with a Registered Investment Adviser

This morning we ran a story about a B.C. widow who was the victim of investment fraud, after trusting the wrong “investor” with her money – lots of her money. Stories like this aren’t meant to frighten and scare, or make people wary of investing their money; but rather, they’re a warning tale about the worst things that can happen, and to ensure that it doesn’t happen to anybody else. But in this case, how could the Dubas’ have better protected themselves against losing all that money?

You’ll come across lots of articles online about how to find the best investment adviser. They’ll mostly tell you about finding an experienced adviser, who’s been in the business for some time and has had a company for at least 5 years, or that’s at least been with a company for that same amount of time.

This wouldn’t have helped the Dubas’ though, as Michaels, the investment adviser, had a infomercial on TV that he probably had for some time.

Articles will also tell you to ensure that the adviser is educated, and that they have initials behind their name that indicate that they’ve been to school and have training in the proper field.

But that most likely also wouldn’t have helped the Dubas in their case, because the chances are also very good that Michaels had those, too.

In fact, there’s only one way to know for sure that you’re dealing with a registered and verified investment adviser, and that’s to check with your province’s security commissions. Whether it’s the OSC for Ontario, or the BCSC for British Columbia, every province has one and contacting them and asking about your adviser is really the only way to keep yourself safe and protect yourself from fraudsters like the one we heard about this morning.

In fact, the Canadian Securities Administrators (CSA) knows that this is the only way to keep consumers safe and so, they’ve dedicated an entire day to it – March 26 in National Check Registration Day in Canada.

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