From: A. Daniel Woska, Esquire
The proposed amendment to NYSE Rule 619 is necessary.
The brokerage houses against whom we bring claims on behalf of individual investors have never fully cooperated in discovery in any of the hundreds of cases we have presented through the NYSE SRO.
The failure to cooperate in discovery is a constant problem through the NYSE because the arbitrators are never appointed until right before the arbitration hearing.
In the meantime, by simply filing objections to our client's requests for information and documents, the brokerage houses are able to withhold important and required information from our client.
If a Motion to Compel is heard by an arbitrator, the arbitrator does not typically like handling discovery and usually suggests that the parties just work it our or bring it up at the hearing. The public customer is always harmed in this process and the brokerage houses enjoy their ability never to produce important and pertinent documents in discovery with impunity.
If brokerage houses can be reported directly to the NYSE for their failure to cooperate in discovery as a result of this amendment, the public customer may begin to have an opportunity to receive evidence retained by the houses and never produced for claimants without an order from arbitrators.
It would be wise, in light of the US Supreme Court rulings on arbitration to insure that due process of law at least begin to take place on some level of fairness lest the entire securities arbitration process be struck down as a sham.
This amendment might be a start.
"Men are more ready to sacrifice their lives than their livelihood; and to sacrifice their own importance often comes hardest of all." B. H. LIDDELL HART (1895-1970)
A. Daniel Woska, Esquire