‘Honeypot’ swimsuit towards Morgan Stanley alleges discrimination

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If the allegations in a brand new discrimination lawsuit towards Morgan Stanley are true, Wall Road nonetheless has a protracted method to go towards eliminating the sort of behavior it has been making an attempt to wash up for many years.

That is what Lou Straney, a regulatory skilled at Arbitration Insight, mentioned of a swimsuit filed on Feb. 23 by monetary advisor Tara E. Stewart, who labored for Morgan Stanley in Mount Laurel, New Jersey, from 2019 to 2022. In her authorized grievance, Stewart alleges that her former colleague, Evan Silverman, advised throughout the first three months of working together with her that she run an “operation honeypot” and use her beauty and people of her “different enticing feminine pals” to “woo” prosperous shoppers.

When Stewart complained of this conduct to Silverman’s supervisor, Richard Maratea, the 2 started to flow into rumors about her private life and work habits, in keeping with her grievance. She alleges she later grew to become the topic of retaliatory inside investigations after she introduced her considerations to a regional supervisor in September 2021. She resigned in Might of the next 12 months.

Her swimsuit, filed within the Superior Court docket for Burlington County, New Jersey, makes allegations of discrimination and retaliation in violation of the New Jersey Regulation In opposition to Discrimination, amongst different expenses.

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Silverman declined to remark for this text, and Maratea didn’t reply to a request for remark. A Morgan Stanley spokesperson mentioned the agency is “dedicated to sustaining an expert work setting and denies the allegations within the grievance.” 

“These allegations weren’t asserted by Ms. Stewart previous to her voluntary resignation from the agency in Might 2022, which triggered her obligation to repay substantial loans,” the spokesperson added.

Stewart’s lawyer, Erica Domingo of Grungo Regulation in Cherry Hill, New Jersey, didn’t instantly reply to a request for remark.

Straney mentioned the allegations are paying homage to the kinds of conduct Wall Road has been making an attempt to rid itself of for the reason that “Boom Boom Room” scandal of the 1980s. In that, a former worker of the securities agency Shearson/American Specific mounted a discrimination swimsuit towards the agency over complaints of lewd and harassing feedback and conduct. The identify “Growth Growth Room” referred to a celebration cove within the agency’s Backyard Metropolis, New Jersey, workplace.

Straney mentioned Wall Road ever since has “been nicely conscious that each one workers are entitled to a secure {and professional} work setting. That is required, not a suggestion.”

Now the important thing questions for Morgan Stanley, he mentioned, are “what did the agency know, when did they comprehend it, how they responded, and is all of this documented?”

Stewart has been within the monetary providers business for 17 years and has expertise working with 9 companies. Lower than a 12 months after being employed to work for Morgan Stanley in Mount Laurel, New Jersey, in early 2019, she was given the place of director of insurance coverage and planning.

Earlier than becoming a member of Morgan Stanley, she had stints at Pruco Securities, Hornor, Townsend & Kent and TIAA-CREF. She’s now listed as a managing director at Allied Wealth Partners in Parsippany, New Jersey.

Her BrokerCheck web page lists two disclosures, together with a chapter in 2023. The opposite involved in the end dismissed allegations of fraudulent use of bank cards.

Stewart wrote on her BrokerCheck web page, “I’m being accused of utilizing a stolen bank card. I consider that is associated to my latest victimization by id theft and/or a mistake.”

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