Judge Relies on COVID Pandemic to Deny Motion for TRO Filed Against Brokers

Posted on May 20th, 2020 at 3:11 PM
Judge Relies on COVID Pandemic to Deny Motion for TRO Filed Against Brokers

From the Desk of Jim Eccleston at Eccleston Law LLC:

A federal court judge in Florida denied Regions Bank’s motion to reinstate a temporary restraining order (“TRO”) filed against the bank’s former financial advisors, Michael Montalvo and Mauricio R. Cardenas.  Regions Bank sought a TRO in an effort to restrain Montalvo and Cardenas from soliciting former clients serviced at Regions Bank. 

Significantly, the judge’s decision discussed how the COVID-19 pandemic has affected broker transitions. In explaining the decision, the judge cited the current market volatility and clients’ needs to consult with a trusted advisor.  The judge found that issuing a preliminary injunction in this case “could actively obstruct the public interest”, and that it would “present enormous harm to investors” for the court to enter a TRO.  The judge opined that the TRO essentially would take away “the advisors’ cell phones and necessarily chills their responses to clients’ questions out of fear that a response may be misinterpreted as a solicitation.” According to the judge, those concerns outweighed any potential injury to Regions.

In addition, the judge found that the change of employment announcements sent by Montalvo and Cardenas did not constitute a solicitation under Florida law.  Further, the judge opined that Regions failed to demonstrate that client cell phone numbers constituted trade secrets.

The attorneys of Eccleston Law LLC represent investors and advisors nationwide in securities and employment matters. The securities lawyers at Eccleston Law also practice a variety of other areas of practice for financial investors and advisors including Securities FraudCompliance ProtectionBreach of Fiduciary DutyFINRA Matters, and much more. Our attorneys draw on a combined experience of nearly 65 years in delivering the highest quality legal services. If you are in need of legal services, contact us to schedule a one-on-one consultation today.

Related Attorneys: James J. Eccleston

Tags: james eccleston, eccleston law, eccleston law llc, eccleston, covid, tro, brokers

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