Carey Center and FINRA Host Unrivaled Dispute Resolution Competition


On October 14 -16, 2022, St. John’s Hugh L. Carey Center for Dispute Resolution and FINRA co-hosted the virtual 2022 Securities Dispute Resolution Triathlon.

Now in its 13th year, the Triathlon gives students from law schools nationwide an unrivaled opportunity to hone their advocacy skills in negotiation, mediation, and arbitration. This year’s competition field included teams from:

  • Cornell Law School
  • Brooklyn Law School
  • Elisabeth Haub School of Law at Pace University
  • Rutgers Law School
  • Cardozo School of Law
  • Quinnipiac School of Law
  • University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law
  • Chapman University, Fowler School of Law
  • University of Illinois, Chicago School of Law
  • Texas A&M University School of Law
  • University of Houston Law Center
  • South Texas College of Law Houston
  • University of Texas at Austin School of Law
  • University of Pittsburgh School of Law

Advocating in these three different dispute resolution processes—negotiations, mediation, and arbitration—the competitors addressed the problem presented: What supervisory obligations, if any, does a fintech securities brokerage firm, a FINRA member, have to supervise the trading in its customers’ accounts when its customer/broker agreement explicitly states that the firm is not providing investment advice. As the law students reconsidered the appropriate boundaries when innovation challenges investor protection, the volunteer FINRA mediators and arbitrators judging each round offered them invaluable feedback about real-world advocacy.

At the end of a weekend of robust competition, the winners were:

Overall Triathlon:

  1. G – Maryland
  2. J – Houston Law Center
  3. M – Austin

Negotiation Round:

  1. K – Texas A & M
  2. D – Rutgers
  3. L – South Texas

Mediation Round:

  1. B – Brooklyn
  2. G – Maryland
  3. K – Texas A & M

Arbitration Round:

  1. C – Pace
  2. G – Maryland
  3. H – Chapman

Advocate’s Choice Award:

  1. J – Houston Law Center
  2. M – Austin
  3. G – Maryland

“The Triathlon provides aspiring lawyers with a more nuanced understanding of the remedies that each dispute resolution process offers, and which process is more appropriate for the legal matter at hand,” says Elayne E. Greenberg, professor of legal practice, director of the Carey Center, and creator of the Triathlon for St. John’s Law. “This annual event has been such a success because of the people involved in the collaboration. Special thanks to FINRA for sharing the vision and the value of the Triathlon and to St. John’s Law Professor Christine Lazaro, our Triathlon student leader Anna B. Poulakas ’23, and FINRA’s Katherine Bayer for working with me to develop competition problems that tackle current social issues. Many thanks also go to the FINRA mediators, arbitrators, and judges who provided expert guidance and insight to the competitors, and to the Carey Center’s Dispute Resolution Society students for applying their dispute resolution skills to ensure the integrity in each competition room.”

To learn more about the Securities Dispute Resolution Triathlon, please visit the Carey Center website.