Three former Merrill Lynch advisors overseeing a combined $200 million in client assets have opened an independent practice with LPL Financial, the firm says.

In an effort to develop a team structure in the independent space, wirehouse advisors Jeff Kocis, John Kinsella and Richard Rohlfing have moved their business to the Chicago-based IHT Wealth Management, an independent firm on LPL's broker-dealer and hybrid RIA platforms, according to LPL.

"By joining with LPL and IHT, we can provide our clients with objective financial advice that will allow us to find strategies tailored for their needs," Kocis says.

Prior to joining Merrill in 2009, Kocis worked at Bank of America and Lasalle Financial since 2002, according to FINRA records. Kinsella started his career at Goldman Sachs in 1980 and subsequently worked for Paine Webber, Oppenheimer, RBC Dain Rauscher and Bank of America, BrokerCheck records show. Rohlfing, who recently started with Merrill Lynch in 2010, is the newest to the industry, according to FINRA.

The team will open IHT's newest office in Oakbrook, Ill., the firm says. Since joining LPL in 2014, IHT now operates five offices with 17 total advisors and plans to continue its expansion this year on the east and west coasts, according to statements from LPL.

LPL Financial recently lured a Wells Fargo team with $525 million in client assets to its hybrid RIA platform, Stratos Wealth Partners.

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