INVoices: Contract flap at Edward Jones

Dec 16, 2012 @ 12:01 am (Updated 1:47 pm) EST

Keeping up with Jones' contract

L

ast Tuesday, senior columnist Bruce Kelly wrote about the dust-up around a news report that Edward Jones was circulating a new contract to its brokers that included tighter restrictions on anyone seeking to leave the firm. Turns out the contract — and the restrictions — are not necessarily new, but some brokers may just now be waking up to them. InvesmentNews.com readers reacted quickly and vociferously to Mr. Kelly's blog post.

Their contract is so one-sided that I cannot imagine that any court would sustain it! In addition, the contract is making explicit the "astounding' assertion that the client "belongs' to Edward Jones and has no right to contact the adviser whom he or she thought their relationship was with.” — LLOYD_DAVIS Keep drinking that Kool-Aid ...” — Remick_Ham

Edward Jones has reps who can read a contract???” — loneMADman

Ed Jones says that clients BELONG to Jones. How can anyone BELONG to a company they do business with? Jones' hubris is growing with every passing day. That is why I left and am very happy not to be part of that organization.” — puregold

How about a disclosure stating, "You may do business with the broker while they are here, but if they leave, you cannot contact them. Period. And if you do contact them, we will sue the broker, and a subpoena will be issued for you to testify'? Hmmmm. How much business would Ed lose?” — S.A. Wilson

Typical industry bullying. If a rep signs the "new agreement,' they should also receive something in return. Without consideration, the new agreement is bunk. Time to lawyer up, reps.” — Lee_Williams

Despite what the GPs tell you in St. Louis, it is NOT the same agreement. That is simply PR they are trying to spread. The new agreement is more restrictive, and the changes, though they appear subtle, have a profound impact on your contract. I strongly encourage anyone that is asked to sign this new agreement to bring it to a labor attorney to have it review-ed. It could completely derail your career if you leave Jones for ANY reason.”

— JRoon

Been tried many times in Calif., this does not work. It's called intimidation. These big companies like to do business with their representatives in this manner. A throwback to the good old days of the "50s. If you ever needed a reason to leave a company, this is a pretty good one.”

— LOUIS_AVALOS