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
Jul 13, 2007 2005001919501 Order Denying Respondent's Motion to Compel Production of Exculpatory and Other Material Documents Disciplinary Order
Aug 14, 2007 2005001819101 Hearing Panel Decision in Department of Enforcement v. Domestic Securities, Inc. Disciplinary Decision
Oct 2, 2008 2005001819101 Domestic Securities Inc. Disciplinary Decision
Dec 28, 2006 2005001819101 Order Granting Complainant's Motion to Strike in Part the Introduction to Respondent's Answer Disciplinary Order
Jun 12, 2008 2005001798201 Order Denying Respondent's Motion for Summary Disposition Disciplinary Order
Aug 15, 2008 2005001729501 Hearing Panel Decision in Department of Enforcement v. Gerald J. Kesner Disciplinary Decision
Feb 26, 2010 2005001729501 Gerald J. Kesner Disciplinary Decision
Feb 28, 2007 2005001514501 Hearing Panel Decision in Department of Enforcement v. Respondent Redacted Decision
Sep 22, 2009 2005001502703 Hearing Panel Decision in Department of Enforcement v. Ronald E. Hardy, Jr. Disciplinary Decision
May 11, 2007 2005001449202 Interim Scheduling and Case Management Order Disciplinary Order
Feb 5, 2007 2005001305701 Order Denying the Respondents' Motion for a More Definite Statement Disciplinary Order
Feb 20, 2007 2005001305701 Order Denying Respondents' Three Discovery Motions Disciplinary Order
Feb 28, 2007 2005001305701 Order Setting Philadelphia, Pa as Venue for Disciplinary Proceeding Disciplinary Order
Oct 6, 2008 2005001305701 Harvest Capital Investments, LLC and Dennis Cotto Disciplinary Decision
Sep 27, 2007 2005001305701 Hearing Panel Decision in Department of Enforcement v. Harvest Capital Investments, LLC and Dennis Cotto Disciplinary Decision
Jan 10, 2008 2005001085001 Hearing Panel Decision in Department of Enforcement v. Warren K. Hansen Disciplinary Decision
Jul 2, 2007 2005000960801 Hearing Panel Decision in Department of Enforcement v. Mangri Mohini Harlal Disciplinary Decision
May 12, 2009 2005000879302 Amended Extended Hearing Panel Decision in Department of Enforcement v. Legacy Trading Co., LLC and Mark Uselton Disciplinary Decision
Oct 8, 2010 2005000879302 Legacy Trading Co., LLC and Mark Alan Uselton Disciplinary Decision
May 8, 2009 2005000835801 Hearing Panel Decision in Department of Enforcement v. Harry Friedman and Joseph Schnaier Disciplinary Decision
Jul 26, 2010 2005000835801 Harry Friedman Disciplinary Decision
Dec 6, 2010 20050007427 Respondent Firm and Respondent 2 Disciplinary Order
Apr 4, 2012 20050007427 Extended Hearing Panel Decision in Department of Enforcement v. David Lerner Associates, Inc. and William Mason Disciplinary Decision
Sep 12, 2006 2005000631501 Hearing Panel Decision in Department of Enforcement vs. Bryan L. Claggett Disciplinary Decision
Mar 27, 2007 2005000440701 Order Regarding Pre-Hearing Motions Disciplinary Order

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