In November 2013, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) issued Regulatory Notice 13-40 which highlights the recent approval by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) of amendments to the Discovery Guide used in customer arbitration proceedings. These amendments, which became effective for all customer cases filed on or after December 2, 2013, significantly alter the existing discovery standards for securities claims. Professionals handling these claims will benefit by understanding three key components of the amendment’s impact.

First, the amended guide provides guidance on resolving electronic discovery (e-discovery) disputes. Second, the amendments clarify the circumstances under which a party may request an affirmation when an opposing party does not produce documents. Third, the amendments explain how “product cases” are different from other customer cases and describe the type of documents that parties typically request in product cases. 

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