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Abstract

The following is a Report prepared by the Securities Industry Conference on Arbitration ("SICA" or "Conference") concerning non-attorney representation in arbitration. The report is the result of a study, conducted by SICA over the past two years, on the practices and activities of individuals and organizations ("Non-Attorney Representatives" or "NARs") that provide public customers an alternative to representation by attorneys in disputes between customers and broker/dealers. The study was prompted by complaints concerning the quality of such representation; and, raised questions as to whether the activities of NARs constituted the unauthorized practice of law, and whether the interests of investors might be jeopardized or compromised by such representation. In addition, there were concerns raised regarding the fact that some NARs employ misleading and inaccurate advertising, and that some NARs had been barred from working in the securities industry by one or more regulatory bodies for violation of the securities law, rules and regulations. This Report outlines the manner in which SICA studied the issue of non-attorney representation, the arguments made both in favor and opposed to non-attorney representation, and SICA's conclusions and recommendations.

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