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Don Harrell: Suitability Complaint Against Morgan Stanley Advisor

Laguna Niguel financial advisor Don Harrell (CRD# 2222409) allegedly made unsuitable recommendations, according to a recent investor complaint against him. Records maintained by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority show that he is currently a broker and an investment advisor with Morgan Stanley. His past registrations include Merrill Lynch and Banc of America Investment Services.

Investor Claims Harrell Recommended Unsuitable Strategy

According to his BrokerCheck report, a record detailing his history in the securities industry, the complaint against Mr. Harrell was filed in October 2022. It alleges that as a representative of Morgan Stanley, he recommended an unsuitable allocation and investment strategy in a customer’s trust account. The pending complaint, which specifically concerns investments in exchange-traded trusts, alleges damages of $135,170.

Morgan Stanley: Harrell Provides Retirement Planning, Cash Management, Other Services

Mr. Harrell’s Morgan Stanley firm profile describes him as a Senior Vice President at the firm, as well as a financial advisor, a chartered retirement planning counsel, and an alternative investments director. The services he provides, according to that page, include retirement planning, 401(k) rollovers, cash management, estate planning strategies, financial planning, life insurance, long-term care insurance, and alternative investments. In his profile’s “About Me” section, he describes his desire to serve his customers and their families, providing his full attention and maintaining regular communications. “I will communicate regularly to be sure you are informed and comfortable,” he writes. “I will work tirelessly to keep the tools of my craft sharp so that I can proficiently serve your financial needs. It is my goal to do my ‘best’ work so that you and your family can live your ‘best’ life.”

Records Show Multiple Complaints Against Morgan Stanley Representatives

Publicly available records show that Mr. Harrell is not the only Morgan Stanley advisor to receive an investor complaint (or complaints) in recent years. A pending October 2022 complaint against Lafayette, Louisiana-based advisor Kevin Cook, for instance, alleges he committed elder abuse in an instance when a customer’s assets “were taken without oversight,” seeking damages of $375,000. A few months earlier, in August 2022, a customer’s allegations that Palo Alto-based advisor Linh Tranh misrepresented an investment was denied by the firm. Perrysburg, Ohio representative Craig Thistlewaite, meanwhile, has received two pending complaints alleging unspecified damages. Another pending complaint against Walnut Creek advisor Ron Phillips seeks $250,000 in damages.

FINRA: Harrell Based in Laguna Niguel

According to the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, Don Harrell has spent 29 years as a broker. Based in Laguna Niguel, California, has been a broker and an investment advisor with Morgan Stanley since 2015. More information is available via his BrokerCheck report. (Information current as of November 20, 2022.)

Carlson Law represents investors throughout the United States in claims against financial advisors and investment firms. If you or a loved one have suffered investment losses, please call us at 888-976-6111 or complete our contact form for a free and confidential consultation.

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