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Before You File a Securities Complaint

Types of Securities Complaints the DISB’s Consumer Division Can Handle

We handle problems involving handling of accounts by issuers of securities offerings, broker-dealers and investment advisers, including, but not limited to, questionable practices involving offerings of securities, fees and commissions, establishment and management of accounts, and suitability of specific transactions.


If you have a dispute involving your account, contact your securities professional first

When contacting your broker-dealer or investment adviser, have your account number ready. Ask where your complaint needs to be sent and send your written claim to the firm at that address.

Document your phone calls by noting the phone number you called, the name of the person with whom you spoke, the date of the call and a brief summary of the conversation. Keep copies of all written communications.

In addition to the written complaint, send copies (not originals) of letters, notes, invoices, canceled checks, advertising materials, or other documents that support your complaint.

If you still wish to file a complaint with DISB after contacting your securities professional

If you do not receive a satisfactory response from the firm, please file a complaint with DISB, using the form on this webpage. .Include copies of all your notes and correspondence with the firm in the complaint you send to DISB

What DISB cannot do

  • Assume the role as your legal representative, in or out of court.
  • Intervene in a pending lawsuit or case where you are represented by legal counsel, or execute a judgment  in a private lawsuit.


DISB does not have jurisdiction over transactions in which neither the complainant nor the firm is a District resident and (if applicable) the securities offering did not take place in the District.:


What happens if you are not satisfied with DISB’s results?

If you disagree with the Department’s response to your complaint contact the Consumer Services Division and ask to speak with a Supervisor.

You may wish to consult an attorney to discuss your concerns.

DISB does not recommend specific lawyers or law firms.  Please consult your telephone book for listings for attorneys.  If you need help finding an attorney, contact the DC Bar Association for Lawyer Referral Information Services.