In recognition of International Fraud Awareness Week, the Florida Office of Financial Regulation is raising investor awareness of the risks associated with investments in promissory notes.
State securities regulators have identified promissory notes as a leading source of complaints to their agencies. In fact, the North American Securities Administrators Association (NASAA), of which OFR is a member, reported 210 investigations involving promissory notes, which led to 149 formal enforcement actions by state securities regulators last year.
The OFR reminds investors to be cautious of short-term promissory notes. Investors should be cautious about promissory notes with durations of nine months or less, as these notes generally do not require federal or state securities registration. Such short-term notes have been the source of most (though not all) of the fraudulent activity involving promissory notes.
Before making any financial decisions, verify that you’re working with a licensed professional, ask questions, do your homework and contact the Florida Office of Financial Regulation to report financial fraud or suspicious activity via phone (850) 487-9687 or online.