Sharon Oberlander & Her Tactics To Scam Clients: Report 2023

If you are searching for a wealth management firm in Chicago, you may encounter the name Sharon Oberlander Merrill Lynch. The financial advisor in question may employ questionable tactics to exploit her clients, despite her seemingly straightforward approach.

Before entrusting her with the financial well-being of your household, it would be advisable to thoroughly examine the problematic clauses outlined in her terms and conditions. By following this approach, you can arrive at a more informed decision regarding the level of trust you should place in her.

Sharon Oberlander and Merrill Lynch

Merrill Lynch is a financial advisory firm located in Chicago, Illinois. The address of her firm is located at 110 N Upper Wacker Dr, Chicago, IL 60606, US. For inquiries, she can be reached at 312-696-7620.

The operating hours of Sharon’s office are from 8:00 AM to 4:30 PM, Monday through Friday. The firm she is associated with is known as the Oberlander Timmerwilke Group. The company asserts its emphasis on comprehending the individual objectives of its clientele to create a customized financial strategy tailored to their needs.

The firm is led by two managing directors, namely Sharon Oberlander and Andy Timmerwilke. Some other noteworthy individuals at this organization are Annette Seaberg, Erica Khan, Shanda McFadden, and Thomas Ratos.

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This company’s primary focus is on serving high-net-worth individuals and families. As a subsidiary of Merrill Lynch, our firm is equipped to provide a range of services to our clients, which include:

  • Succession planning
  • Funding for education
  • Long-term care insurance
  • Donor-advised funds
  • Securities-based lending
  • Professional trust and estate planning services.
  • Charitable trusts
  • Structured lending

And numerous others.

The company in question appears to make several assertions that may not accurately reflect its level of concern for its clients. Initially, the assertions and commendations of this organization may appear appealing. However, their intended purpose is to ensnare investors in unfavorable contractual arrangements.

The following section of this review will outline the problematic provisions found in Sharon’s disclosures.

Indicators of potential problems or warning signs

Before engaging with a financial advisor, it is advisable to review their FINRA BrokerCheck record. As per the FINRA BrokerCheck profile of Sharon Oberlander at Merrill Lynch, she is currently involved in a significant client dispute.

On June 11th, 2021, a legal dispute was filed against her by one of her clients. The client asserts that there was a failure to disclose a significant piece of information regarding her co-trustee and co-partnership status following the passing of her mother. The user contended that Sharon did not act in the best interest of the customers.

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Please be advised that it is uncommon for such disputes to result in a favorable outcome for the client. The reason for this is that certain advisors, such as Sharon, may require their clients to sign multiple waivers that absolve them of any liability. The Walker Group at Morgan Stanley is another example of such financial advisors.

Conflict of Interest in Broker-Dealer Relationships

One significant concern regarding the disclosures of Sharon Oberlander at Merrill Lynch is her dual registration as both a broker and an advisor. This situation gives rise to several conflicts of interest, including the receipt of both asset-based fees and transaction-based commissions on a single investment, revenue sharing from mutual funds, and the provision of preferential treatment to affiliated mutual funds.

Although regulatory authorities endeavor to regulate dual-registered brokers, it is not feasible for them to oversee every recommendation made by such brokers.

An additional concern regarding these brokers is that they impose elevated fees on their retail RIA customers in comparison to their brokerage customers. Additionally, their preference is for institutional share classes of the identical underperforming mutual funds that they provide to their brokerage clients. According to research, a significant number of investment advisors who are dual-registered fail to meet the fiduciary standard.

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This implies that the recommendations made by Sharon and her team cannot be relied upon. They may prioritize their profits over your financial goals and requirements.

Implementing undisclosed charges

I’m sorry, but there is no text to rewrite. “Sharon Oberlander” is a name and not a sentence or statement. Please provide more context or information for me to assist you better. Merrill Lynch suggests investments that levy 12b-1 fees. This is a widely recognized practice in the finance industry as it enables advisors to levy concealed fees.

The 12b-1 fee is a variable fee that some advisors have utilized questionably to increase their clients’ expenses. In addition to the potential for undisclosed fees, there is also a possibility of incurring additional costs associated with obtaining returns.

The reason for this is that the 12b-1 fee is a promotional fee that companies pay to brokers to market their products. The item in question does not appear to possess any discernible quality or value. In addition to incurring higher costs, investments that impose a 12b-1 fee do not differ from other investments.

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An additional disadvantage associated with the 12b-1 fee is its percentage-based nature. The amount of fees you are charged is contingent upon the size of your portfolio. The nature of a percentage-based fee renders it unsuitable for investors who possess substantial portfolios.

Nonetheless, due to the direct benefit to the broker, financial advisors typically exhibit a preference for investment options that impose a 12b-1 fee compared to those that do not.


Merrill Lynch’s purported claims regarding the level of care provided to clients are unsubstantiated and lack credibility. The terms and conditions of her firm incentivize them to disregard their clients’ needs in favor of greater profitability.

They have been observed to levy undisclosed charges and evade accountability. Entrusting your business to Sharon would likely result in an unfavorable agreement.

It is recommended to seek an alternative wealth advisor and refrain from engaging with Sharon Oberlander of Merrill Lynch.

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