SR-FINRA-2011-044

Proposed Rule Change to Amend FINRA’s Code of Procedure

Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, Inc. ("FINRA") is filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission ("SEC" or "Commission") a proposed rule change to amend FINRA's Code of Procedure that includes: (1) allowing service of a complaint (and notices of certain expedited proceedings) on counsel or another person authorized to represent others when such representative agrees to accept service; (2) permitting electronic filing of papers with an adjudicator; (3) decreasing the number of copies required to be filed with the adjudicator; (4) giving counsel to the National Adjudicatory Council ("NAC") authority to set the specifications and the number of copies of all papers to be filed with the NAC; (5) requiring an attorney seeking to withdraw from a disciplinary case to file a motion before withdrawal would be approved; (6) adding an additional, permissive subject for a pre-hearing conference; (7) allowing FINRA staff to set the rate for copies; (8) allowing Hearing Officers to manage the parties' pre-hearing submissions to reduce and eliminate duplicative filings; (9) giving Hearing Panels and the NAC additional flexibility as to required statements in decisions; (10) clarifying that the Review Subcommittee may review certain default decisions; (11) allowing an adjudicator to cancel a previously scheduled oral argument; (12) clarifying the procedure for when an appealing party does not participate in a disciplinary proceeding before a Hearing Officer, a Hearing Panel or, if applicable, an Extended Hearing Panel; (13) allowing a Hearing Panel in an eligibility proceeding to extend time limits for the filing of any papers without consent of all the parties; and (14) allowing counsel to the NAC to decide a procedural motion in an eligibility proceeding or an expedited proceeding.