The Securities Arbitration Clinic is part of the St. Vincent de Paul Legal Program, Inc. It is a one-semester clinic staffed by second and third-year law students who help represent under-served investors in securities arbitration claims before the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA). Typical claims involve misrepresentation, unsuitability, unauthorized trading, excessive trading (aka churning), and failure to supervise.
Under the supervision of Director Christine Lazaro students handle all phases of the client’s case and gain valuable lawyering skills, including client interviewing and counseling and negotiation and advocacy, as well as substantive legal knowledge of securities laws and the securities arbitration process. Depending on the phase of the case(s) students are assigned, they may engage in:
Clinical Students may also consult and collaborate with financial experts to conduct financial and legal analyses of cases they handle. Additionally, students may write comment letters to the SEC and/or FINRA in response to requests for public comment on proposed rulemaking or other agency activity.
Students also conduct Investor Education Seminars in local public libraries and other community organizations in Queens and Brooklyn on such topics as:
Lorraine Benjamin, Clinic Administrative Assistant
Securities Arbitration Clinic
St. John’s School of Law, Room 2-26
8000 Utopia Parkway
Queens, NY 11439[email protected]
Students can apply for the Securities Arbitration Clinic during the spring semester for fall of the following academic year and in the fall semester for the following spring semester of the same academic year.
Attend a Virtual Clinical Information Session which is held for All Clinics for one day in April and in October.
Submit an online application
Upload the following within the online application:
Director, Securities Arbitration Clinic
The Securities Arbitration Clinic is a one semester, four-credit clinic offered in the spring and fall. It is open to second and third-year students.
There are no required pre- or co-requisites for Clinic participation and students do not need to have a securities or finance background. Although there are no required courses, practice dourses such as Mediation, Negotiation, and Trial Advocacy can help you prepare for the clinic. In addition, substantive courses such as Business Organizations Securities Regulation, Broker Dealer Regulation and Corporate Finance can be helpful.
While the minimum weekly time commitment is 16 hours, comprised of 14 office hours and a two-hour weekly seminar, there may be weeks where students work much more than the minimum. Students meet their time commitment by completing office hours at the Clinic. Office hours may completed in as little as two days or as many as four days. Office hours must be scheduled in increments of at least two continuous hours but no more than seven hours. If office hours are scheduled over two days, the days may not be consecutive and may not be more than two days apart (i.e. Monday and Thursday is permitted, but Monday and Friday is not). The seminar is held on Mondays from 4:00 pm to 6 pm in the Law School's Clinical Conference Room. Students may not schedule office hours during the weekly seminar. Each student works in a team with two other students.
Students may have a part-time job while participating in the Clinic. However, part-time work should not interfere with students’ commitment to the Clinic or office hours. Students are cautioned that the progress of a case can be unpredictable at times and any part-time position they hold must be flexible enough to accommodate this unpredictability.
Each student is required to team with two other students to conduct one Investor Education Seminar during per semester.
SAC Spring 2022 Info Sheet