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WASHINGTON — Lawyers handling refunds in the First Command Financial Planning case have extended the deadline for claims until June 30 to accommodate troops serving overseas.

Wayne M. Secore, the attorney administering the restitution program, said officials may push back that deadline even further if necessary. Originally investors had only until March 15 to recoup their losses.

“We want to make sure everyone who is owed money has an opportunity to collect,” Secore said. “We’re still having requests coming in, so that’s another reason to push back the deadline.”

In December, as part of a settlement with federal regulators, First Command agreed to refund about $4 million in portfolio fees to customers who bought and sold systematic investment funds from the firm between 1999 and 2004.

Company officials eliminated those funds late last year, but were already under investigation by the Security and Exchange Commission and the National Association of Securities Dealers for misrepresenting the up-front costs of those investments.

Also in the settlement, First Command paid an $8 million fine — to be used by regulators to establish an investment education program for military personnel — and agreed to have all advertising approved by an independent consultant for two years.

According to SEC estimates, about 40 percent of current active-duty general officers, about one-third of the commissioned officers, and about 16 percent of noncommissioned officers are customers of First Command. The firm’s client total is just under 300,000, and the majority of its sales agents are retired military officers.

Secore said the decision to extend the deadline even further will depend on the level of response and questions from investors over the next three months, and if more time could result in more customers being helped. A number of troops serving overseas have already contact his office, but he said officials are concerned that even more won’t have time to inquire about the settlement until they return from deployment.

Investors with additional questions can contact his office at secore@secorewaller.com. Visit www.nasd.com for more information.

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