Business was looking up for Mark Immel in January. The longtime adviser had just won a $450,000 arbitration case against his former employer, Raymond James & Associates, after a tumultuous four years that had cost him tens of thousands of dollars and many sleepless nights.

Immel, an adviser for 27 years in central Florida, had once been a top producer at the firm; he even belonged to the firm's chairman's club in 2013. But in February 2014 he was terminated from Raymond James. The firm said management had lost confidence in him, according to a note in his CRD file on FINRA’s BrokerCheck database. Immel disagreed and he and the firm began trading claims against each other in FINRA arbitration: The bitterest dispute revolved around the two parties’ counterclaims of breach of promissory — more commonly known as clawbacks.

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