U4 Problem

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Apr 28, 2010 11:26 pm

Hi everybody.  I'd like to get your views on my situation.

I have a degree in engineering, but have always loved the markets.  Last year, while temporarily laid off, I talked to a good friend of mine, and independent advisor, about coming to work with him.  We met several times, and in his opinion, he felt I was an excellent candidate because of my market knowledge, my outgoing personality, and my entrepreneurial spirit.  I started studying for the 7 and 63, was scoring 80%+ on the practice exams, and filled out applications with his firm.

Around the same time, a contract engineering opportunity came up paying a rate equal to over $150k per year.  I started working it, with the understanding that at the end of the contract I would go to work with my friend.  At the end of each 3 month contract, the client kept renewing me, so we delayed opening my window for the tests and submitting the paperwork to FINRA.

Finally, back in February, I thought my contract would finish, and we submitted all the forms, and paid for the tests.  Window opened in late Feb.  Then, two things happened concurrently:  1.  My company was asked to hire several more engineers for the project, and 2. FINRA found a charge on my record from 1997.

First the charge.  I was living in Puerto Rico from 96-2000 doing engineering work.  My girlfriend at the time was a hot head and called the police to claim a domestic abuse charge on me on Valentines Day, 1997.  It was totally an over-reaction to an argument we had, as there was no evidence, but there was a witness who testified that nothing happened, no medical review, no injury, nothing.  However, even though the case was dismissed, and by her own admission in court, an over reaction, Puerto Rico has no records of the disposition of the case.  All FINRA knows is that I was charged, and I'm told that will forever show up on my U4.  I can't prove that the case was dismissed because PR didn't start keeping electronic records until 1999.  I can't even get a letter from the archives department saying that they don't have the records.

Meanwhile, my company is invoicing about $100k per month to our current client, and growing rapidly.  My partner and I pull down about $20-$30k per month, each, and there is no end in sight.

My question is:  Does it make any sense whatsoever to get into the FA world knowing that this BS charge will be on my U4, and if so, will the long-term financial gain as an FA ever surpass what I have built up so far?  I'm really pissed that something that happened 13 years ago needs to be reported, especially when I can get no records that indemnify me because of PR incompetence.

Thanks for taking the time to read and/or respond.