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Interpretive Notices


(Board of Directors, December 1, 1997)


Section 7 of NFA's Member Arbitration Rules requires the parties to automatically exchange certain documents early in the discovery process. Under this procedure, NFA will identify the standard documents that are routinely relevant for the causes of action alleged in a particular case from this list of documents approved by NFA's Board of Directors. NFA will then notify the parties that they must automatically exchange the standard documents with each other no later than 15 days after the last pleading is due. A party is not required to obtain or exchange any documents that do not exist or that are not within the party's possession or control.

The parties may ask for other documents and information within 30 days after the last pleading is due. The parties may ask for documents on the list which have not been identified for automatic exchange if they believe those documents are also relevant to the claim or defense.

  • Records (including billing records), tapes, notes and transcriptions of tapes of telephone or in-person conversations between the parties relating to the matters involved in the dispute.

  • Any memoranda, notes or other correspondence between the parties relating to the matters involved in the dispute.

  • Contracts or written agreements between the parties.

  • Partnership or joint venture agreements.

  • Corporate documents (i.e., articles of incorporation, by-laws, resolutions, minutes of Board meetings).

  • Annual reports and financial statements.

  • Disclosure documents.

  • Authorizations for transferring accounts or positions from one FCM to another.

  • Records of security or guarantee deposits made by one party with or for the benefit of another party.

  • Commission runs.

  • Customer equity runs.

  • Registration applications, biographies, resumes or similar documents showing employment history and educational background of the parties.

  • Employee personnel files, including performance evaluations.

  • Employee handbooks, including amendments.

  • Forms 8-T or U-5 for the parties.

  • Documents showing salary history (including bonuses, commissions and commission pay-outs).

  • The index to a party's procedures manual.

  • If the dispute involves a customer account, copies of the customer's account opening documents and forms, monthly activity statements, and daily confirmation statements.