James A. Nofi represents clients in securities arbitrations, brokers in employment disputes and arbitrations, and brokers, brokerage firms, and investment advisors in regulatory investigations and proceeding. Before relocating to Atlanta, he was a trial lawyer in New York specializing in the areas of securities regulation, enforcement, and civil litigation for 20 years, including 12 years at the Division of Enforcement of the New York Stock Exchange, Inc., rising to the position of Trial Counsel.
With extensive experience in conducting securities industry investigations and prosecutions, including appeals, Mr. Nofi is knowledgeable about broker/dealer compliance issues in the areas of sales practice (unauthorized, unsuitable, and excessive trading), financial/operational areas (net capital and customer protection), and trading matters (market maintenance, market manipulation, and other trading violations). Mr. Nofi also served as lead counsel in an Exchange disciplinary matter in which, for the first time, the sanctions required a non-publicly traded broker-dealer to add an independent director to its board. He has written several articles on securities regulation and evidentiary matters.Mr. Nofi has represented customers pursuing arbitration claims involving, among other things, unsuitable investments, churning, variable annuities, fraud, misrepresentations, the submission of forged documents, and claims under ERISA. He has represented clients in investigations before the SEC, FINRA, and the Securities Division of the Secretary of State of Georgia. Mr. Nofi has lectured on various topics of securities regulation.
Mr. Nofi has also represented brokers and others in employment matters. He successfully prosecution an arbitration claim on behalf of a broker whose former employer breached his severance agreement, tortuously interfered with his business and committed fraud. He also was part of a trial team who successfully represented a former brokerage firm executive against his former employer for breach of contractual and severance obligations. In both cases, the client was awarded in excess of one million dollars.
In September 2006, Mr. Nofi was a member of a Labor and Employment Law delegation to China through the People to People Ambassadors Program. He was also a delegate to a People to People Peace Mission to Egypt in December 2007.
- New York University College of Arts and Science, B.A., History, cum laude, 1978
- New York University School of Law, J.D. 1981, Editor, Moot Court Board
- New York 1982
- Georgia 2004
- United States District Court, Southern District of New York 1982
- United States District Court, Eastern District of New York 1982
- United States District Court, Northern District of New York 1984
- United States District Court, Western District of New York 1984
- United States Court of Appeals, Second Circuit 1986
- United States District Court, Northern District of Georgia 2004
- American Bar Association
- Litigation Section
- Securities Regulation Committee
- Trial Practice Committee
- Trial Evidence Committee
- State Bar of Georgia
- Atlanta Bar Association
- Litigation Section
- Securities and Corporate Litigation SubSection
- Labor and Employment Law Section
- New York State Bar Association
- New York City Bar Association
- Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association, Compliance and Legal Division
- National Society of Compliance Professionals
- Broker-Dealer Legal & Regulatory Subcommittee
- Jamaica Stock Exchange’s 2008 Investment and Capital Markets Conference, Montego Bay, Jamaica, January 29, 2008 – February 1, 2008.
- Panel discussions on “Regulating Alternative Investment Schemes” and “The Use of Technology to Increase Business Efficiency.”
- Oppenheimer & Co.’s Second Annual Central American and Caribbean Conference, Atlanta, Georgia, September 2007
- Panel discussion of current legal issues facing the securities industry including various scams and schemes perpetrated on customers.
- Jamaica Stock Exchange 2007 Investment and Capital Markets Conference, Montego Bay, Jamaica, January 2007
- Speaker –”Legal Barriers to Financial Integration”
- Jamaica Stock Exchange’s 2006 Summer Workshop for Brokers, Kingston, Jamaica
- Speaker – “Avoiding Customer Complaints”
- Co-counsel for claimant in $3.96 million dollar FINRA arbitration award in favor of a brokerage firm’s former chief operating officer against his former firm and its parent company for breach of their contractual and severance obligations in February 2008. On June 12, 2008, the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan denied respondents’ motion to vacate and granted claimant’s motion to confirm the award of $3.96 million.
- Co-counsel for broker who was awarded $1.6 million in damages in an arbitration against his former employer. The broker had alleged breach of severance agreement, tortious interference with business, and fraud. The award of $1.625 million was reduced by $780,680 representing the value of firm stock that the firm alleged was mistakenly distributed to the broker.
- Co-counsel for customers who were awarded $140,000 against their brokerage firm by an NASD arbitration panel for unsuitable investments in variable annuities.
- Lead counsel in NYSE disciplinary proceeding against Nomura Securities International, Inc. in which, for the first time, the sanctions required a non-publicly traded broker-dealer to add an independent director to its board. (NYSE Disc Action 95-138, 1995 NYSE Disc. Action LEXIS 138.)