On December 6, 2017, FINRA officially announced what may prove to be one of the most important Rule changes to brokers with one or more customer disputes.
What Has Been
2000 thru 2010 - FINRA removes certain meritless disclosures automatically after 24 months (no charge, no hoops to jump through)
2010 thru 2017 - FINRA puts back up those disclosures that were removed over the previous 10 years and now requires that you go through a lengthy and expensive arbitration to have them removed under Rule 2080.
2018 forward - FINRA proposes to eliminate the option for advisors to expunge customer disputes that were posted more than 12 months ago.
The newly released Reg. Notice 17-42 introduces a slew of proposed modifications aimed directly at frustrating the process for brokers to have false, misleading, or irrelevant information expunged from their records AND proposes that it goes away completely!
What Is Proposed
The biggest changes that will affect an advisor with disclosures are:
Who This Affects
A quick review of the winners and losers here reads like most every change FINRA enacts as a "self-regulatory organization":
What Financial Advisors Should Do
FINRA is currently accepting comments on the proposed changes to the Code of Arbitration Procedure Relating to Request to Expunge Customer Dispute Information (Reg. Notice 17-42). They are closing the comment period on February 5, 2017; there is not much time to act.
You must contact them in order to have your voice heard.
- You can email them at: firstname.lastname@example.org - just note that this is in response to Reg. Notice 17-42.
- You can mail them a letter at:
Office of the Corporate Secretary
1735 K Street NW
Washington, DC 20006-1506
This blog is our ongoing effort to inform and educate FINRA licensed professionals about the evolving regulatory ecosystem in which we operate.