FINRA Arbitration

The partners leading Duval & Stachenfeld's FINRA Arbitration Practice Group can boast decades of FINRA and trial experience. This proficiency translates into a proven track record of success and lower legal spend for our clients.

Practice Group Leaders: Allan N. Taffet


The Firm’s FINRA arbitration team consistently provides high quality representation to its clients, adding value not only by achieving superior results at arbitration, but also by doing so in a cost-effective manner. Here’s why:  Our decades of actual FINRA trial experience have provided an unparalleled understanding of this niche practice area.  

This depth of experience is important, given that FINRA arbitration has become a highly specialized area.  No longer is FINRA a simple securities dispute forum limited to the quick disposition of straightforward brokerage customer account disputes.  In the last several years, many FINRA disputes have grown in size and complexity – and amounts in controversy have increased accordingly.  Now, FINRA arbitrations can range from multi-party arbitrations involving highly structured financial products to particularized trading disputes among industry member firms.   

At D&S, our FINRA team has spent years negotiating FINRA’s unique and evolving procedural rules.  Given this expertise, we are able to obtain successful results for our clients – whether that means trying cases through award or negotiating the “right” settlement.  

Importantly, in addition to a deep background arbitrating before FINRA, all of the practice group partners have extensive trial experience.  For example, group leader Allan Taffet has had the opportunity to try a variety of complex cases through verdict over his thirty year career in federal court, state court, regulatory forums and arbitration forums.   

At D&S, our top litigation partners run our FINRA practice, and they run it personally.  Our FINRA team includes:

Allan Taffet (Chair of D&S’s Litigation Practice), is a graduate of Harvard Law School.  Allan’s career includes stints at law firms Cravath, Swaine & Moore and at Willkie Farr & Gallagher.  He also served as an Assistant United States Attorney in the Southern District of New York, where he was appointed Deputy Chief of the Civil Division.  Allan has arbitrated all manner of FINRA arbitration disputes dating back to the establishment of the NYSE and NASD securities arbitrations forums.  

Keith Blackman, also a Harvard Law School graduate, specializes in defending financial services clients against customer claims brought before FINRA.  He has most often handled claims alleging fraud, investment unsuitability and sales of purportedly improper tax shelters.  Keith spent almost ten years at Debevoise & Plimpton before joining the firm.  

Brian Burns is a trial lawyer who graduated from Columbia Law School.  His practice typically includes several arbitration hearings a year.  Brian’s most recent FINRA victories were arbitrations concerning structured auction rate securities, premium finance life insurance, and the trading of stocks on foreign exchanges.  Brian also successfully represented a telecommunications client in a multi-billion dollar American Arbitration Association hearing that lasted for 37 days.  Brian began his career at Winston & Strawn and LeBoeuf Lamb Greene & MacRae.  

Josh Klein, a graduate of Brooklyn Law School, has practiced for fifteen years at D&S.  He is an experienced litigator who is uniquely qualified to handle large, complex FINRA matters involving non-traditional investment strategies, including leveraged derivatives, auction rate securities and options strategies.  Josh’s practice also includes the representation of entities and individuals in investigations and proceedings initiated by FINRA and other government enforcement agencies.  

Our major FINRA clients now include the following respected industry players:

Deutsche Bank 
Credit Suisse
BNY Mellon

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