The CFP board prohibits Jim Iannazzo from using its trademark “or [even] suggesting he holds it, at least until ex-broker Merrill stands trial for three crimes stemming from a smoothie-throwing tirade

The Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards took about two weeks to determine that Iannazzo’s conduct ‘significantly impinges’ on his ‘reputation’

Smoothie-throwing James Iannazzo’s race just got tougher. He was stripped of his extra-regulatory professional title in response to a tirade involving physical intimidation, bigoted remarks and a viral show-and-tell video.

Police mug shot of James Iannazzo after his arrest.

The ex-Merrill Lynch broker is no longer allowed to use the CFP mark next to his name, state or even “suggest” that he holds such a designation after the Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards issued an interim suspension order.

In the days following the incident at the smoothie shop in Fairfield, Connecticut, Iannazzo listed the designation next to his name on his LinkedIn page. The Southport, Conn. resident’s page. is no longer available online.

The now infamous incident happened on January 25, 2022 and it took the CFP board until February 7 to conclude that “Mr. Iannazzo’s conduct significantly impinges on the reputation of the [financial planning] profession and CFP certification marks.

The incident set off a Category 5 trademark risk storm for Merrill Lynch, Iannazzo and the CFP Board as it was audio and video recorded. The clip went viral both on social media and in the media.

Due process

The 13 days seemed long compared to Merrill Lynch’s reaction.

The CFP board explained that it must engage in formal proceedings, including the convening of a hearing panel of the CFP board’s Disciplinary and Ethics Committee.

The Commission meets at least six times a year to consider any matter in which the CFP Board has alleged that a CFP professional has breached the Code and standards, according to its statement.

He did not say whether he met early in this case out of a sense of urgency about this high-profile case.

In this case, the “Commission” characterized the incident in crude terms.

“Iannazzo verbally and physically assaulted some smoothie shop employees, one of whom was allegedly underage, near his home on January 22, 2022, which was caught on video and widely shared in the media and social media,” writes the Council in The version.

“Mr. Iannazzo has been arrested and charged with three felonies, including intimidation based on bigotry or second-degree bias, one felony.”

Banned from shop

Iannazzo claims he was under the duress of fear after seeing his son sent to hospital with an allergic shock allegedly caused by peanuts served in a smoothie by employees of local smoothie shop Robeks in Fairfield.

The Board also clarified that the “provisional” aspect of the suspension may well become permanent if the criminal allegations against the broker hold up in court.

“The CFP Board may revoke an interim suspension order if a criminal conviction is overturned or overturned or if the defendant provides sufficient evidence to show that he has not been the subject of a criminal conviction,” the statement said. .

Earlier this week, Connecticut Superior Court Judge Ndidi Moses told the 48-year-old broker to stay away from the shop. He then continued the case until March 9, according to local news reports.

Iannazzo is charged with second degree breach of the peace, first degree criminal trespass and intimidation based on bigotry or prejudice. He did not plead the charges when he appeared in court on Monday, February 7.

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