December 1, 2010
I am an attorney. My practice focuses on the representation of public investors and financial industry professionals in securities arbitration claims. I have participated in securities arbitration cases for nearly 35 years.
I write in support of the proposal by FINRA eliminating the mandatory industry arbitrator from panels involving customer disputes. The change is long overdue.
The rule change will improve the arbitration process. For the last 23 years, that process has been mandatory for and governs most claims that customers have against financial industry professionals. But the arbitration process seemed corrupt and unfair to customers. Who really can believe that he or she is getting a fair hearing or decision when one-third of the "jurors" work in the very industry accused of wrongdoing?
The rule change provides customers with a fairer forum and will help level the playing field.
I urge the Commission to approve the proposed rule change on an expedited basis.