Securities Arbitration Clinic

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 and Assistant Director Francis J. Facciolo, 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:

  • Factual and legal investigation
  • Case assessment
  • Drafting of Statements of Claim
  • Propounding discovery requests
  • Responding to discovery requests
  • Pre-hearing scheduling conferences and conference calls
  • Negotiating settlement with opposing counsel
  • Conducting mediations
  • Conducting arbitration hearings

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:

  • Investor rights and responsibilities
  • Broker duties
  • Common causes of action
  • Tips for keeping track of investments
  • Potential risks of investment products
  • What to do if an investor’s brokerage firm goes out of business

Contact Us

Lorraine Benjamin, Clinic Administrative Assistant
Securities Arbitration Clinic
Clinical Office
St. John’s School of Law, Room 2-26
8000 Utopia Parkway
Queens, NY 11439
[email protected]
718-990-6898
Fax 718-990-1961

Our Clinic

How to Apply as a Candidate

Attend a Clinical Information Session.  It is held for one day only in October and in March.

  • Next Date:   To be announced (through Symplicity and Law School display monitors)

Submit an online application

  • Application URL:  To be announced (through Symplicity and Law School display monitors)

Upload the following within the online application:

  • Cover Letter stating interest in the clinic 
  • Current Resume
  • Unofficial Transcript printed from the Academic Record screen in UIS 

 

 

Christine Lazaro
Director, Securities Arbitration Clinic

Francis J. Facciolo
Assistant 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 Evidence, Corporate Securities Regulations. Finance, and Business organizations 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 holding office hours at the Clinic four days each week, between Monday and Friday and between the 9:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m. Office hours must be held in a minimum of two-hour blocks and may not be changed once finalized and approved by the professors, except in extraordinary and unforeseen circumstances. The seminar is held on Mondays from 3:55 to 6:05 p.m. at the Law School’s Clinical Office. 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.