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 descending Title Type
Aug 13, 2013 2009016159102 Amended Hearing Panel Decision in Department of Enforcement v. Respondent Redacted Decision
Jul 28, 2015 2009016159102 Warren Forest Disciplinary Decision
May 4, 2015 2009016159110 Anthony Spagnolo, III Disciplinary Decision
May 4, 2015 2009016159111 Brian Sanders Disciplinary Decision
Sep 19, 2013 2009016317701 Amended Hearing Panel Decision in Department of Enforcement v. The Dratel Group, Inc. and William M. Dratel Disciplinary Decision
Jul 23, 2015 2009016317701 James E. Rooney, Jr. Disciplinary Decision
May 6, 2015 2009016317701 The Dratel Group, Inc. and William M. Dratel Disciplinary Decision
Mar 8, 2011 2009016551301 Hearing Panel Decision in Department of Enforcement v. Freddy A. Medina Disciplinary Decision
Dec 31, 2013 2009016764901 Robert Durant Tucker Disciplinary Decision
Jan 11, 2013 2009016764901 Hearing Panel Decision in Department of Enforcement v. Robert Durant Tucker Disciplinary Decision
Apr 29, 2015 2009017195204 Merrimac Corporate Securities, Inc. Disciplinary Decision
Nov 19, 2013 2009017195204 Hearing Panel Decision in Department of Enforcement v. Merrimac Corporate Securities, Inc. Disciplinary Decision
Aug 18, 2010 20090173549 In the Matter of the Membership Continuance Application of Applicant Firm A Membership Decision
Mar 22, 2012 2009017439601 Hearing Panel Decision in Department of Enforcement v. Timothy Joseph Golonka Disciplinary Decision
Feb 4, 2013 2009017439601 Timothy Joseph Golonka Disciplinary Decision
Mar 15, 2017 2009017440201 APPEALED: Louis Ottimo Disciplinary Decision
Jul 10, 2015 2009017440201 APPEALED: Louis Ottimo Disciplinary Decision
Oct 12, 2009 2009017496501 Hearing Panel Decision in Department of Enforcement v. Christopher J. Perrott Disciplinary Decision
Mar 5, 2014 2009017527501 Steven R. Tomlinson Disciplinary Decision
Mar 21, 2013 2009017527501 Hearing Panel Decision in Department of Enforcement v. Steven Robert Tomlinson Disciplinary Decision
May 2, 2013 2009017529101 Order Denying Respondent’s Motion to Compel Production of Documents and a List of Withheld Documents. Disciplinary Order
May 2, 2013 2009017529101 Order Denying Respondent’s Motion to Compel Production of Documents and a List of Withheld Documents Disciplinary Order
Apr 25, 2011 2009017775601 Hearing Panel Decision in Department of Enforcement v. Meyers Associates, LP Disciplinary Decision
Sep 7, 2011 2009017798201 Order Denying Respondent’s Motion for Stay of Hearing Disciplinary Order
Mar 24, 2011 2009017798201 Order Denying Respondent’s Motion for Leave to Offer Expert Testimony Disciplinary Order

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