The Oaks Group – Morgan Stanley – Multi-million Lawsuits

The Oaks Group of Morgan Stanley is a dubious financial advisory firm. Their disclosures are riddled with red flags that put their customers in potentially disastrous positions.

The worst part is that they’ve crafted these clauses in such a way that the clients won’t even notice anything is incorrect until it’s too late. For instance, the advisers at Morgan Stanley’s Oaks Group have made it possible for themselves to impose secretive fees.

In the following analysis, I will reveal these dubious clauses. You can make a more educated judgment about whether or not to collaborate with this company if you have a thorough understanding of them and their threat.

Introducing the Oaks Group Collective Bank

The Oaks Group Morgan Stanley is a financial services corporation with headquarters in the California city of Thousand Oaks. You may reach them at 805-494-0215 or visit 100 N Westlake Blvd STE 200 in Westlake Village, California 91362.

Seth A. Haye is the CEO of The Oaks Group. Kathryn Arnold, Elisa Decker, and Duncan Hizzey are a few of the other noteworthy persons who work here.

529 Plans, asset management, professional portfolio management, trust accounts, financial planning, life insurance, cash management, and retirement planning are just some of the services offered by the Oaks Group Morgan Stanley.

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The Oaks Group asserts that it takes the time to learn about its clients’ hopes and dreams so that it can help them achieve their financial goals. However, it appears from their disclosures that they are more concerned with protecting their financial interests than those of their clients.

The Oaks Group’s Contentious Terms and Disputes Bank of Morgan Stanley

Seth Haye’s Clients and Him in Several Lawsuits

Seth A. Haye’s history as an attorney includes several disputes with his clientele. His FINRA BrokerCheck profile details all of them. The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) BrokerCheck is a useful database where you can learn everything you need to know about your financial advisors, such as their work history, certifications, state licenses, and disciplinary actions.

In 2008, Seth A. Haye was involved in his first legal issue. In this case, the advisor was criticized for disregarding client instructions about Auction Rate Securities (ARS).

Since the dispute involved the 2008 sale of Auction Rate Securities, a settlement of $1.5 million was reached.
The second disagreement between Seth and the company is also from 3-27-2008 and concerns Auction Rate Securities. A claim of unsuitability and misrepresentation was made by the client in this case. The legal dispute concluded in a $125,000 agreement.

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In 2009, he got into his third argument. In this case, the client complained about Seth’s suitability in 2008, but Seth said the investment was fine. The client wanted $15,000 in compensation for their losses.

Seth has experienced three legal disputes during his tenure as an investment advisor, which is quite high. This indicates that he often prioritizes his own needs over those of his clients. It also demonstrates that Seth and his company are not as trustworthy as they would have you believe.

Subtle Costs Added On

Investment products with 12b-1 fees are endorsed by The Oaks Group Morgan Stanley’s. This is a marketing cost that could lead to additional charges the client wasn’t expecting. As a promotional fee businesses offer to advisors to sell their financial products, the 12b-1 fee does not reflect any value.

In addition, because it is a percentage, the amount you pay is related to the value of your investment portfolio. Paying this fee is counterproductive if you are an ultra-high-net-worth individual, family, or institution.

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The 12b-1 charge tends to rise over time and can become quite costly. Many people who put their money into investments that include this fee mistakenly believe that they would perform better.

According to research conducted by the SEC, the 12b-1 fee does not affect the performance of investments. Therefore, the return on investment (ROI) for these investments is lower than that of similar investments that do not impose the same fee.

Putting Customers in Unnecessary Danger

The fact that The Oaks Group Morgan Stanley requires its clients to pay a percentage of their gains is a major drawback. As a result, they will be more likely to recommend risky investments to their customers.

In down markets (like the present pandemic-ridden one), high-risk techniques are especially perilous and counterproductive to long-term gains. Investors often lose a lot of money on them because of their high failure rate.

Your financial advisor cannot be held responsible if they advise you to take risks. You “understand” all the risks involved with their suggestions, as stated in the agreements.

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However, a performance-based fee structure would allow your advisor to keep a portion of the profits made from the high-risk strategy. As a result, it puts investors in an awkward position.

The investor bears all the risk, while the broker reaps the vast majority of the rewards.

That’s why it’s such a taboo in the financial sector to pay professionals based on their performance.

On the flip side, it’s widely used by dishonest and greedy financial counselors. Also notorious for taking advantage of this fee system is The Chase Group Morgan Stanley.


We do not recommend The Oaks Group Morgan Stanley as an advising firm. The company’s leadership is unstable, and its many terms and conditions serve more as traps than tools for promoting ethical behavior in the workplace.

Seth Haye has a long history of legal battles, suggesting that he may not prioritize your needs over his own. The fact that they plan to charge you a 12b-1 fee in addition to a performance-based fee reduces your confidence in them even further.

You should be very careful before agreeing to work with them.

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