Filing The Claim
How long do I have to file my claim? The Code of Arbitration Procedure Rule 12206 states that no claim can be eligible for submission to arbitration where six (6) years have elapsed from the occurrence or event giving rise to the claim.
The arbitration process begins with the filing of the statement of claim in accordance with FINRA Rule 12302. The claim does not have to be in any particular format but it should clearly state the facts to be considered by an arbitration panel detailing who you are seeking damages from, why you feel that you are entitled to damages and the amount of damages sought. The statement of claim should also contain federal or state statutes that are applicable, in addition to any violations of FINRA Rules. In addition to the claim, you have to submit and executed Uniform Submission Agreement stating that you agree to be bound by the arbitration procedure, including the decision of the arbitrators hearing the case. This document is essential to the initiation of any claim. Filing fees established by FINRA are based upon the amount in controversy and payment must accompany the statement of claim. Determination of the amount of the fee can be made by reviewing the Code of Arbitration Procedure or by using the procedure.
Expedited initial pre-hearing conferences, discovery deadlines and evidentiary hearing dates are available to assist claimants that are elderly or in ill health. If this is the case, this should be pled in the statement of claim requesting an expedited hearing. Otherwise, the time from the filing of the claim to the hearing date will normally be roughly twelve (12) months for most cases.
The preparation of the statement of claim is one of the most important aspects of the arbitration process because the claim cannot be amended without requesting and obtaining leave to amend, once the panel is in place.
Once you have filed the statement of claim, FINRA will serve it on the Respondent. They have forty-five (45) days to file their statement of answer and an executed Uniform Submission Agreement, pursuant to FINRA Rule 12303.