David Lerner Associates to Pay NJ Over Nontraded REIT Sales
David Lerner Associates has agreed to pay a $700K penalty to resolve allegations accusing it of illegally selling nontraded real estate investment trusts in the state of New Jersey. In the consent order from the New Jersey Bureau of Securities, the firm also agreed to pay $50K to a fund for investor education, as well as $100K for costs.
At issue are the nontraded REITs Apple 9, Apple 8, and Apple 7. In early 2014, the three REITs merged together and became Apple Hospitality REIT Inc (APLE). Investors complained to the state regulator about the sale of the three REITs, which raised money to purchase hotels. After the NJ regulator contacted the firm about possible failures in its compliance system related to the sale of the non-traded real estate investment trusts, David Lerner Associates said it would assess its sale of the REITs there.