DO they go after you for training fees

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Dec 1, 2004 8:57 pm

I work for MS. When I started work I was asked to sign something that if I left in 6 months I would have to pay them back training fees. It was less than 10K. If I stay longer then it would be 40K to 60K


Do they really go after people legally? What is the best strategy for not paying if I want to leave.  I have only been there for less than 6 months


Dec 1, 2004 9:10 pm

If you are staying IN the industry, you can be pursued.  If you are leaving the industry you will probably NOT be pursued.


An  attorney I contacted on this subject pointed out a valid defense to the claim for return of training funds is to challenge the value received.


There is NO way MS or anyone else has ever provided $40,000 in training.  For $40,000 for can graduate from most state 4 year colleges.


Good Luck.


Dec 1, 2004 9:31 pm

Hunter, contact a securities attorney.  Bill Singer, late of these boards, would be a good place to start.  The concerns that you've expressed are far too important to trust to some sea lawyer who did some checking once and now posts here.

Dec 2, 2004 4:41 pm

hunter-


Why are you leaving? Is it because you want to switch firms? Is it because you just aren't cutting it? If the reason is the latter, let them cut you loose and you should be free and clear to move on to another firm or another industry.

Dec 2, 2004 10:26 pm

The reason why I am thinking of changing is that I want to change firms to HSBC. I believe I will have more opportunities there.



BR


Hunter

Dec 2, 2004 10:27 pm

Also at MS I can't have any international clients. Due to compliance.


I have a lot of international clients.

Dec 3, 2004 12:16 pm

It is scary to think that people running their own business would make a comment like it does not cost that much to train someone.  Well, I guess they are just not good with numbers.


Did they spend that on hard goods and salary for the trainee?  No.


But when you look what it cost to maintain a training department, and don't forget that we need S7 licensed trainers, $40K in on the light side. 


Why do you think so many firms are willing to pay the training fee of the other firm?  They look at it as getting off cheap.


Now, you may be able to challenge on the basis that is posted but the legal system and reality are rarely in the same universe.

Dec 3, 2004 10:31 pm

Hunter, I am in the same situation as you.  I have been with ML for about 6 mos and I want to go somewhere where I can do more trading (perhaps prop) and have been concerned about the cost of leaving.  I wish I had an answer, but I am just as clueless as you.


Junk, how would you go about letting them cut you loose without them still fining you?  I dont want to sit at my desk all day not doing anything.  From what I understand, they could still go after you for poor production if you give a sub-par effort in prospecting. 


Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Dec 4, 2004 7:54 am

My honest opinion are you rookies thinking of leaving with only six months in are only making excuses. Stop making excuses about wanting to do more trading or wanting to work with higher net worth people. The truth is you can do all that right where you are if you go out to meet people and ask for their business.


You haven't been in one place long enough to either prove yourselves or get the job done. Excuses for not prospecting are a dime a dozen, and so are failed brokers.


Dec 4, 2004 8:04 am
ezmoney:

My honest opinion are you rookies thinking of leaving with only six months in are only making excuses. Stop making excuses about wanting to do more trading or wanting to work with higher net worth people. The truth is you can do all that right where you are if you go out to meet people and ask for their business.


You haven't been in one place long enough to either prove yourselves or get the job done. Excuses for not prospecting are a dime a dozen, and so are failed brokers.





I totally agree. You guys knew what you were getting into. If you didn't, shame on you. Get all of your whining out of the way this weekend, then go in on Monday and kick some butt.

Dec 5, 2004 11:54 am

Amen, ezmoney!

Dec 6, 2004 8:45 pm

Do you think high net worth investors are going to walk into a bank branch and ask the cashier about getting more returns on their $$$? Your sales trainer should teach you how to get in front of people with a very high net worth. Forget about high net worth when you go to a bank. They have nothing for high net worth people as far as 144 sales, concentrated stock management, liquidity for restricted stock, private placements etc.

Dec 6, 2004 11:35 pm

Do you think HNW investors are going to even talk to you if you are:



1.) A rookie.

2.) Haven't met them face to face about 20 times.

3.) Haven't pursued their business for at least 3 years.



This HNW fallacy is hilarious.  Sure go after the big fish, but
you must know you're NOT going to land them and when you do it will be
a sh*tty account.  Go after the bread and butter clients. 
HNW clients deal with Big Shot Advisors who have gray hair and 25+
years in the business, not some rookie.



I give you this not to insult rookies, but to give them a dosage of
reality.  If you're switching firms to "serve more HNW clients",
you're full of sh*t.  You're switching because you're not making
it.  Don't fool yourself into thinking switching firms will solve
your problems, it won't,  it just delays the inevitable.  I'd
love to see some stats on successful advisor, ($1,000,000 plus gross),
and how many times they switched firms.  I'm guessing the one and
only switch was TO indy.



If you don't even have 6 months at your firm, shut your pie hole, get
off the internet, quit making excuses, quit day dreaming and GET TO
WORK.

Dec 11, 2004 3:01 am

hunter,



If you go to another firm you can bet that MS will go after those
training fees. If that is the case then try to get your new firm to buy
you from MS. If you leave the business entirely they will let you go
freely.



Also, if you are not doing well, going to another firm won't make a
difference. It is going to come down to you as a person no matter what
firm is on your business card.

Dec 15, 2004 8:07 pm

Here's a question: let's say this goes to arbitration and MS is awarded
the full $50,000 in training expenses in the contract (worst case
scenario) -- where do they expect a rookie, fresh out of school,
saddled with student loan debt, who was paid 6 months worth of
entry-level salary, and wasn't able to open a lot of accounts, to get
that kind of cash? 

Dec 15, 2004 10:23 pm
fender:

Here's a question: let's say this goes to arbitration and MS is awarded the full $50,000 in training expenses in the contract (worst case scenario) -- where do they expect a rookie, fresh out of school, saddled with student loan debt, who was paid 6 months worth of entry-level salary, and wasn't able to open a lot of accounts, to get that kind of cash? 



I'm no lawyer, but I rather suspect the inability to pay(and some proof thereof) would be a useful bargaining chip.

May 9, 2007 9:48 pm

I'm no lawyer but I surmise they just wouldn't give a damn about some guy who was there for 6 months and left the firm.  Don't take my advice, but I just get that feeling (considering the amount of money they blow on straight-up deadbeats every day).

May 10, 2007 1:51 pm

It costs peanuts for the firm to file for arbitration, and since they've done it before, their lawyers fees to prepare the documents are minimal.  Knowing that 99% of the time they will get some kind of settlement before going to arbitration (because who wants to risk losing a $50K judgement and lawyer fees?).  Even if the settlement is for 10 cents on the dollar, they still are about $4K ahead after expenses.


So the real question is, why wouldn't they go after you? 

May 10, 2007 7:56 pm

Too bad there isn't a FAQ section to these boards. Bill Singer's explanation of what one could expect, if "leaving" training dollars on the table, is excellent and is worthy of future reference.


Thanks, Bill!

May 11, 2007 7:29 pm

Bill Singer: "I mean, geez, why don't we routinely charge new clients $500 for the cost of setting up their accounts and providing them with initial advice if they don't stay with us for at least one year?  Good luck with that."


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You make that sound like a bad thing!