Cantor Fitzgerald Defends $13 Million Wrongful Termination Suit

May 13, 2013

In a Financial Industry Regulatory Authority ("FINRA") Arbitration Statement of Claim filed in September 2011 and amended thereafter, Claimant Teevan asserted breach of contract, unpaid commissions, compensation, and wrongful termination. At the close of the hearing, Claimant sought $12,821,012 in compensatory damages. In the Matter of the FINRA Arbitration Between Martin Owen Teevan, Jr., Claimant, vs. Cantor Fitzgerald & Co. and Cantor Fitzgerald, L.P.  Respondents (FINRA Arbitration 11-03545, May 8, 2013).

Respondent Cantor Fitzgerald & Co. generally denied the allegations and asserted various affirmative defenses. Respondent Cantor Fitzgerald, L.P. did not enter an appearance in this matter.

In March 2012, Claimant filed his Second Amended Statement of Claim, which removed Respondent Cantor Fitzgerald, L.P. as a party.


The FINRA Arbitration Panel found Respondent Cantor Fitzgerald & Co. liable and ordered the firm to pay to Claimant $15,000 in attorneys' fees; $7,500 in costs; and compensatory damages (with 9% interest from August 1, 2010 until paid) in the amount of:
  • $235,951.00 for the unpaid bonus from crossover trades;
  • $123,243.07 for commissions and overrides; and
  • $5,278.00 for the business travel expenses.
Bill Singer's Comment

Alas, I wish that we were afforded far more detail about this dispute.  Claimant Teevan walked away with about $400,000 in damages, but that is a far cry from the nearly $13 million he had sought. Such astronomical damage demands are frequently compounded for leverage and effect; however, the discrepancy between the demand and the sum awarded is significant. It's tough to figure out who won this case - would have been fun to have been the fly on the wall during settlement discussions (if any occurred) and heard what the final offer was.