Simplified Arbitration Part Two – Potential Benefits

By Geoff Hafer, Spring 2016 Student Intern

So in part two of the Simplified Arbitration Series, we are looking at the potential benefits of Simplified Arbitration.

Perhaps the most obvious benefit is one of timing. On average, parties who file Simplified cases get a decision within eight months from the date they file their case. This is a far cry from the lengthy resolution times often found in practically every other proceeding.

What does the process look like from start to finish?

  • Claimants file a Statement of Claim that specifies the facts and remedies requested.
  • Respondents have 45 days to file an Answer after being served with the Statement of Claim
  • Parties will exchange documents and information. Requests for documents and information must be made within 30 days after the respondent’s Answer is due. Any response or objection to document requests must be served within 10 days of the receipt of the request.
  • Parties will select an arbitrator.
  • FINRA notifies the parties of the arbitrator’s identity, and they have 30 days to submit any final documents for the arbitrator to consider.
  • Final award is delivered.

Overall fees are also substantially lower in Simplified Arbitration. For instance, filing fees in Simplified cases range from as little as $50 to a maximum of $600. To determine filing fees FINRA has a handy Arbitration Filing Fee Calculator. In addition to less expensive filing fees, there are fewer litigation costs, copy costs, exhibit production costs, travel costs, transcription costs, and attorneys’ fees.

With faster resolution and less expensive overall fees, Simplified Arbitration is an attractive option. In part three of the series, we will discuss some of the shortcomings of Simplified Arbitration.