News Release

NASD Implements Expedited Dispute Resolution Proceedings for Elderly or Seriously Ill Parties

Washington, D.C.—NASD Dispute Resolution has adopted procedures on a national basis to expedite arbitration cases in which a complainant is elderly and/or infirm. The procedures were tested in a pilot program in NASD-DR's Southeast Region that began in July, 2003.

Based on initial results of the pilot program, NASD-Dispute Resolution determined to apply the expedited procedures nationally.

Under these proceedings, NASD Dispute Resolution staff will endeavor to do the following on an expedited basis: complete the arbitrator selection process; schedule the initial pre-hearing conference; serve the final award; and, determine whether the parties are interested in mediation. NASD also encourages arbitrators to consider the health and age of a party when scheduling hearing dates, considering postponement requests and setting discovery deadlines.

"We at Dispute Resolution are determined to do everything within our control to expedite cases involving the elderly and infirm," NASD Dispute Resolution President Linda D. Fienberg said. "We will closely monitor these cases to ensure that they proceed as quickly as possible."

More information on the expedited proceedings is available at