Adjudication and Decisions

When FINRA determines that violations of securities rules have occurred and formal disciplinary action is necessary, the Enforcement Department or Market Regulation Department files a complaint with the Office of Hearing Officers (OHO).

The Office arranges a three-person panel to hear the case. The panel is chaired by a hearing officer who is an employee of the Office of Hearing Officers. The Chief Hearing Officer appoints two industry panelists, drawn primarily from a pool of current and former securities industry members of FINRA's District Committees, as well as its Market Regulation Committee, former members of FINRA's National Adjudicatory Council (NAC) and former FINRA Governors.

At the hearing, the parties present evidence for the panel to determine whether a firm or individual has engaged in conduct that violates FINRA rules, SEC regulations or federal securities laws. In reaching its decision, the hearing panel also considers previous court, SEC, and NAC decisions to determine if violations occurred. The NAC is the national committee which reviews initial decisions rendered in FINRA disciplinary and membership proceedings.

For each case, the hearing panel will issue a written decision explaining the reasons for its ruling and consult the FINRA Sanction Guidelines to determine the appropriate sanctions if violations have occurred. FINRA also, when feasible and appropriate, can order firms and individuals to make restitution to harmed customers.

Appeals Process

Under FINRA's disciplinary procedures, a firm or individual has the right to appeal a hearing panel decision to the NAC, or the NAC may on its own initiate a review of a decision. On appeal, the NAC will determine if a hearing panel's findings were legally correct, factually supported and consistent with FINRA's Sanction Guidelines. While a panel decision is on appeal, the sanction is not enforced against the firm or individual.

Unless FINRA's Board of Governors decides to review the NAC's appellate decision, that decision represents FINRA's final action. A firm or individual can appeal FINRA's decision to the SEC and then to federal court.

Date of Decision Proceeding No.sort ascending Title Type
Feb 29, 2008 20070077587 Rulings on Pre-Hearing Motions and Notice of Hearing Disciplinary Order
Jun 20, 2008 20070077587 Hearing Panel Decision in Department of Enforcement v. Matthew S. Kaplan Disciplinary Decision
Oct 31, 2007 20070077587 Order Resolving Certain Pre-Hearing Motions Disciplinary Order
May 15, 2009 2007007682501 Hearing Panel Decision in Department of Enforcement v. Jereis Khawaja Disciplinary Decision
Mar 18, 2010 2007007377801 Hearing Panel Decision in Department of Enforcement v. Noble B. Trenham Disciplinary Decision
Nov 11, 2009 2007007255603 Order Following Final Pre-Hearing Conference and Granting, in Part, Enforcement's Motion to Preclude Testimony and Exhibits Disciplinary Order
Sep 1, 2011 20070072538-03 Amended Extended Hearing Panel Decision in Department of Enforcement v. Max International Broker-Dealer, Corp. Disciplinary Decision
Dec 8, 2010 2007007151101 Hearing Decision in Department of Enforcement v. Merrimac Corporate Securities, Inc. Disciplinary Decision
May 2, 2012 2007007151101 Merrimac Corporate Securities, Inc. Disciplinary Decision
Dec 3, 2009 2006007544401 Hearing Panel Decision in Department of Enforcement v. M. Paul De Vietien Disciplinary Decision
Dec 28, 2010 2006007544401 M. Paul De Vietien Disciplinary Decision
Feb 8, 2011 2006007105101 Order Denying Respondent’s Motion for Summary Disposition Disciplinary Order
Aug 20, 2008 2006007101701 Hearing Panel Decision in Department of Enforcement v. Flavio G. Varone Disciplinary Decision
Oct 14, 2008 2006006890801 Hearing Panel Decision in Department of Enforcement v. CMG Institutional Trading, LLC and Shawn Baldwin Disciplinary Decision
May 3, 2010 2006006890801 CMG Institutional Trading LLC and Shawn D. Baldwin Disciplinary Decision
Mar 16, 2015 2006006705601r APPEALED: John M.E. Saad Disciplinary Decision
Oct 6, 2009 2006006705601 John M. Saad Disciplinary Decision
Aug 19, 2008 2006006705601 Hearing Panel Decision in Department of Enforcement v. John M. E. Saad Disciplinary Decision
Nov 24, 2009 2006006259501 Order Denying Respondent's Motion to Compel Production of List of Withheld Documents Disciplinary Order
Oct 28, 2010 2006006259501 Hearing Panel Decision in Department of Enforcement v. Respondent Redacted Decision
Dec 15, 2008 2006006192901 Hearing Panel Decision in Department of Enforcement v. Denis William Kraemer, Jr. Disciplinary Decision
Dec 18, 2009 2006006192901 Denis William Kraemer, Jr. Disciplinary Decision
Dec 18, 2009 2006006046401 Hearing Panel Decision in Department of Enforcement v. James Richard Willard, III Disciplinary Decision
Oct 16, 2009 2006005977901 Hearing Panel Decision in Department of Enforcement v. Kale E. Evans Disciplinary Decision
Oct 3, 2011 2006005977901 Kale E. Evans Disciplinary Decision

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