Dispute resolution

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Dispute Resolution

Any method of resolving a conflict without resorting to a lawsuit. Dispute resolution involves the disputing parties agreeing that a neutral arbiter will hear the arguments of both sides and render a binding decision. In investing, arbiters in dispute resolution may be FINRA, the New York Stock Exchange, or the SEC, depending on the type of disagreement. Dispute resolution is nearly always less expensive than a lawsuit because there are no appeals (and fewer lawyers).

Dispute resolution.

Dispute resolution -- sometimes called alternative dispute resolution -- refers to methods of resolving conflicts between parties or individuals that doesn't involve litigation.

Mediation and arbitration are two forms of dispute resolution that are frequently used when conflicts arise between investors and the brokers or investment advisers with whom they work.

If you have a conflict that you've been unable to resolve by talking with your broker and the firm, you can file a complaint with NASD or the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE), the self-regulatory body that regulates brokerage firms and uses mediators and arbitrators to help resolve disputes. If your conflict is with a registered investment adviser, you should contact the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

Advocates of dispute resolution note that it tends to be quicker, cheaper, and less confrontational than litigation.