If you have landed on this article, most likely because you probably just received a letter from FINRA via certified mail that states, “You are notified that the FINRA office is conducting an inquiry to determine whether violations of the federal securities laws or FINRA, New York Stock Exchange, MSRB rules, have occurred.”
In the following paragraph, you’re being urged to submit a number of papers, respond to a number of queries, and/or provide on-the-record testimony to FINRA employees as required by FINRA rule 8210.
The chances are you’ve never received or seen one of these letters before, and it can be very intimidating and cause a lot of anxiety.
Robert W. Pearce, a nationwide regulatory defense lawyer with a practice that includes representation of broker-dealers and financial advisors answers one of the more frequently asked questions: What is a FINRA 8210 letter?
What is a FINRA Rule 8210 Letter?
Receiving a Rule 8210 letter implies that FINRA is seeking documents, information, or testimony from you regarding an investigation of a broker-dealer or a person who is registered or associated with a broker-dealer. Whether or not you are a person of investigation is uncertain.Need Legal Help? Let’s Talk.
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At this point, it would be a good idea to contact a lawyer who specializes in securities law and is familiar with FINRA regulations.
Independent of whether you believe you are the subject of investigation, you are obligated to respond. Failure to do so can have dire consequences.
In the case that you are the individual under investigation, you will be glad that you spoke with an attorney now rather than later. An attorney can help ensure that your rights are protected throughout the process and help guide you in providing the appropriate information and documents to FINRA investigators.
What is a FINRA 8210 Request?
FINRA Rule 8210 Provision of Information and Testimony and Inspection and Copying of Books gives FINRA the authority to request and examine and make copies of the books, records, and accounts of a member firm related to any matter being investigated, complained about, examined, or processed.
In addition, this rule can seek and require testimony from any person associated with the member firm and require production of documents relating to FINRA-regulated activities.
FINRA Rule 8210 is an important tool for ensuring compliance in the securities industry. It allows FINRA to keep a vigilant watch over potential violations and misconduct, ultimately providing customer protection and investor confidence.
This request applies to firms as well as registered brokers, registered representatives, and other associated persons of the firm. FINRA may direct its 8210 requests to any person who is a member or associated with a member firm, such as officers, directors, employees, shareholders, and partners.
As a registered representative, it is important to understand the implications of a FINRA 8210 request. These are rules that you choose to abide by when you become a part of the securities industry and registered with FINRA.
A failure to comply with FINRA Rule 8210 could result in disciplinary action by FINRA.
What Happens with the Information that I Provide to FINRA?
The information obtained by FINRA through its Rule 8210 request can be used in a variety of ways, including enforcement investigations and proceedings. It also may be used to assess whether disciplinary action is necessary, as well as for market surveillance purposes.
The information that FINRA obtains can be shared with other regulatory organizations, law enforcement, and government agencies.
The information may also be disclosed by way of a subpoena in civil litigation.
Responding to a FINRA Rule 8210 letter can be intimidating. There are a lot of things to consider and evaluate carefully before responding.
When faced with a FINRA 8210 letter, it is in your best interest to seek a securities lawyer who is familiar with FINRA regulations to help you navigate the process. An experienced securities attorney will provide guidance and advice to ensure your rights are protected throughout the investigation.
Do I Have to Respond to a FINRA Rule 8210 Letter?
Yes, you must respond to the letter and provide any requested documents or on-the-record testimony. The consequences of not responding can be serious, including suspension or permanent bar from the securities industry. Do not jeopardize your career by failing to respond in a timely manner.
You may not even be the target of the investigation, but your cooperation will still be essential in order to provide information that may help FINRA uncover any violations of the federal securities laws.
It can be difficult to comprehend exactly what is expected from you when you receive a FINRA rule 8210 notice. An experienced FINRA defense attorney can answer your questions and guide you through the process so you understand your rights and responsibilities.
The Law Offices of Robert Wayne Pearce, P.A. have over 40 years of experience defending FINRA inquiries, investigations and disciplinary proceedings. Contact our office today for a free consultation to discuss how we can help you respond to the FINRA 8210 letter.
What are the Consequences of Not Responding to a FINRA Rule 8210 Letter?
The consequences of not responding to a FINRA Rule 8210 letter are serious. And, more often than not, if the individual does not comply with this information request, the individual will be barred from the securities industry.
If a registered broker or registered representative does not comply with FINRA Rule 8210 request, they will no longer be able to be associated with a member firm.
If a registered firm does not comply with FINRA Rule 8210 request, then normally that firm is going to be expelled from the securities industry.
The consequences are steep, and you should strongly consider the options available in responding to the FINRA Rule 8210 letter.
FINRA has jurisdiction over all FINRA-registered firms, brokers, and associated persons. They can take disciplinary action against those who do not comply with the rules set forth in FINRA Rule 8210.
If you are currently registered with a firm or you have been currently registered with a firm in the past 2 years, then FINRA may very well have jurisdiction over you.
Do not ignore a FINRA Rule 8210 request.
If you have received one, contact the Law Offices of Robert Wayne Pearce, P.A. for legal advice and assistance. Our experienced attorneys have been helping clients respond to FINRA rule requests for over 40 years and can provide you with the information and guidance you need to effectively handle your situation.
Call us today at (800) 732-2889.