|Monday, September 17, 2007|
Sarah Bohn (202) 728-8988
FINRA Mediation Prices Reduced During "Settlement Month" in October
Washington, DC — The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) announced today it will offer incentives and special programs designed to promote mediation and educate potential parties about the benefits of its dispute resolution program during Mediation Settlement Month in October. During Mediation Settlement Month, parties mediating cases with FINRA will be able to do so at significantly reduced rates.
"FINRA is proud to endorse and sponsor Mediation Settlement month, now in its ninth year," said Linda Fienberg, President of FINRA Dispute Resolution. "By reducing rates and hosting educational events, we hope to encourage parties to try mediation for the first time and to reinforce its value and effectiveness to those who have benefited from it in the past."
FINRA, the largest non-governmental securities regulator, was created through the consolidation of NASD and New York Stock Exchange Regulation's member regulation, arbitration and enforcement functions in July 2007. FINRA has a total of 73 hearing locations in all 50 states, Puerto Rico and London. For a complete list, see the FINRA Dispute Resolution map of regional offices and mediation hearing locations.
Mediation is a voluntary, non-binding dispute resolution process in which a trained, impartial individual helps parties negotiate and reach a settlement acceptable to all parties to the dispute. Once the parties reach an agreement through mediation, they sign a mutually agreeable settlement agreement. In contrast, when a dispute is submitted to arbitration, the decision of the arbitrator or arbitration panel is binding on all parties regardless of whether the parties agree with the decision.
During Mediation Settlement Month, hundreds of mediators have agreed to reduce their normal fees, allowing FINRA to present substantial savings to parties. FINRA anticipates another successful Mediation Settlement Month, in which the number of cases where parties agree to mediate typically increases by 40 percent or more over other months. In October, FINRA will reduce by one-half its normal mediation filing fees for all cases, and mediators' prices will be as follows:
Since the FINRA Mediation program was established 12 years ago, FINRA has processed nearly 15,000 cases involving a wide variety of securities disputes, with approximately 80 percent resulting in a settlement between the parties. Participant evaluations consistently report satisfaction with the process. In surveys parties mediating through FINRA completed over the last five years, 76 percent of those who responded agreed that mediation resulted in time savings, and 74 percent indicated that mediating through FINRA resulted in cost savings.
Interested parties can view more information about FINRA mediation and the Mediation Settlement Month events at www.finra.org.
Mediation Settlement Day in New York on October 18
The seventh annual Mediation Settlement Day is scheduled for October 18, with a kick-off event on October 2, at the New York City Bar Association, 42 West 44th Street, New York, NY. The Honorable Milton Mollen, a former Judge with the Appellate Division, Second Department, is serving as the honorary chair and the keynote speaker for the Mediation Settlement Day 2007 kick-off event.
Mediation Settlement Day is organized by a coalition of mediation providers with the objective of raising the awareness of the many benefits of mediation and of the wealth of available resources. On Mediation Settlement Day, organizations conduct special programs designed to promote mediation and to educate potential parties and attorneys about the mediation process. Last year the event attracted nearly 100 sponsoring organizations, including the New York State Unified Court System, national alternative dispute resolution programs, bar associations, community-based programs, public service organizations and schools.
To initiate a mediation or arbitration online or to find out more about FINRA Dispute Resolution forum, visit FINRA's Web site www.finra.org.
FINRA Dispute Resolution is the largest securities dispute resolution forum in the world. FINRA facilitates the efficient resolution of monetary, business and employment disputes between investors, securities firms and employees of securities firms by offering both arbitration and mediation services through a network of hearing locations across the United States.
FINRA, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, is the largest non-governmental regulator for all securities firms doing business in the United States. Created in 2007 through the consolidation of NASD and NYSE Member Regulation, FINRA is dedicated to investor protection and market integrity through effective and efficient regulation and complementary compliance and technology-based services. FINRA touches virtually every aspect of the securities business—from registering and educating all industry participants to examining securities firms; writing and enforcing rules and the federal securities laws; informing and educating the investing public; providing trade reporting and other industry utilities; and administering the largest dispute resolution forum for investors and registered firms. For more information, please visit our Web site at www.finra.org.