Three LPL Financial advisers have jumped to Wells Fargo Advisors Financial Network, propelled in part by compliance concerns, including the Department of Labor's new fiduciary rule.

"In order to continue to grow with the DoL rule coming out of Washington and the market being lackluster, we felt that having the size and strength of a big company like Wells Fargo and Wells Fargo Advisors was the right choice," says Doug Lockwood, co-founder of the Harbor Lights Financial Group in Manasquan, N.J.

(Harbor Lights Financial Group)
(Harbor Lights Financial Group)

Lockwood and his partners, Ken Roberts and Rob Tendler, manage $380 million in client assets, he says.

The team also was concerned about LPL's recent regulatory troubles, its size with more than 14,000 advisers and a drop in adviser service at LPL, Lockwood added.

Image: Bloomberg News
Image: Bloomberg News

"We saw some things happening in our relationship at [LPL] that were a little concerning with customer service," he added.

An LPL representative says the IBD has increased its service center capacity by more than 25%, with a couple of key hires and other improvements.

"These and other measures are already yielding results, including significantly shortening hold times and speeding call resolution," LPL spokeswoman Heather Carter wrote in an email. "While we respect any [adviser's] decision to find the best fit for them, we are proud of our industry-leading, adviser-production retention of 97%."

At Wells Fargo, Lockwood says, he and his team are looking forward to benefitting from both the bank's size and its smaller independent broker-dealer business, with about 1,300 affiliated advisers.

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We wanted to feel that we were being treated as the only client they served.

"I want to be a big fish in a small pond," he says. "We wanted to feel that we were being treated as the only client they served. Over the years, we lost a little of that [at LPL]. And by the way, we had that happen in both of our former IBDs."

Before LPL, the advisers were affiliated with Royal Alliance.