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Susan L. Harper, Esq.

Susan L. Harper, Esq.

Managing Director, NY/NJ

Susan L. Harper, Esq. is the New York/New Jersey Managing Director of Bates Group, a leading provider of securities litigation support, regulatory and compliance consulting and forensic accounting services to Fortune 500 companies, the nation’s premiere law firms, financial services companies and regulatory bodies worldwide. With over 30 years of experience, Bates Group’s growing roster of 165+ financial industry experts, forensic and damages consultants provide expert and consulting services in the areas of retail and institutional securities litigation (State and Federal settings, SEC/regulatory bodies, FINRA/AAA/JAMS arbitrations), U.S. and international regulatory investigations and independent compliance and regulatory consulting.

Susan is responsible for external relations and outreach to the Tri-State financial services and legal community and works closely with senior management on the development and execution of companywide business strategy and new strategic initiatives, including Bates Research Group, Institutional Litigation Support, Regulatory Intelligence, as well as the development of expert and client-centered substantive and thought leadership engagement.

An experienced litigation attorney, Susan also provides strategic litigation and arbitration support to clients.  She has represented major broker dealers, insurance companies, clearing firms and their employees throughout the United States on a variety of matters before FINRA, SEC and state and federal courts in connection with customer, industry, and employment disputes, as well as compliance and regulatory matters. She has successfully defended, mediated and settled claims involving wrongful termination/discrimination, suitability, speculative products, hedge funds, over concentration, fraud, churning, misappropriation, negligence, fiduciary duty, failure to supervise and Form U4/U5 related matters.

She is experienced in advising clients and devising strategic approaches and strategies to securities arbitration and litigation matters; interviewing and prepping witnesses; analyzing potential arbitration panels; coaching and making recommendations to clients; drafting arbitration and litigation pleadings; conducting legal, investigative research and background checks; managing and coordinating pre-hearing conferences and discovery, including e-discovery, FINRA/court mandated discovery, issuances of subpoenas; pre-hearing preparation and hearing processes.

Susan is a consultant and subject matter expert in these Practice Areas and Services:



Successfully represented global financial services company in motion to compel arbitration in Surrogate’s Court (Published decision; Matter of Depinto v UBS, 17 MS 2008, NY Surrogate’s Court (Suffolk County, 2010)

Mediated suitability claim on behalf of national discount broker concerning naked puts, straddles and options contracts in third party managed accounts

Served as lead associate for law firm regulatory team on behalf of 60-year-old Wall Street brokerage house concerning FINRA penny stock, AML regulatory inquiry, hedge fund dispute

Successfully defended Fortune 500 client in overconcentration claim concerning multiple hedge funds

Served as lead associate for law firm arbitration team that successfully defended a multimillion dollar fraud claim brought against nationally known clearing firm client. After a nine-day trial on the merits, the claim against the client was denied in its entirety
Successfully negotiated settlements for broker-dealers concerning FINRA claims of suitability, misallocation, overconcentration, fraud and speculative retail product

Represented insurance company in FINRA claim concerning variable annuities and insurance related products
Represented registered representative and Fortune 500 Company concerning suitability of investments in third party managed accounts

Represented Fortune 500 Company in FINRA suitability claim concerning hedge fund investment

Represented Fortune 500 Company in multiple South American retail customer claims


Susan is the Co-Chair of the New York County Lawyers’ Association’s Securities & Exchanges Committee and is a past Co-Chair of NYCLA’s Women’s Rights Committee. She is a member of the New York State Bar Association’s Committee on Securities Litigation and Arbitration and Co-Chair of the Committee on Women in the Law’s Legislative Affairs Subcommittee. She is a member of the Midtown Regulatory Group (comprised of the nation’s leading compliance and securities regulatory professionals) and has served as an Editorial Board member of the Journal of Securities Law, Regulation and Compliance, Henry Stewart Publication.

Susan served as the 2012-13 President, Chair of the Board of Directors and Executive Committee of the Financial Women’s Association (“FWA”) of New York, Inc. and FWA of New York Educational Fund where she successfully led the 850-plus individual and 20-plus major corporate member organization through a historic transition year, increasing new member acquisition by 42% and unrestricted Educational Fund giving by 54% over the year earlier. In 2010-11, she served as the pro bono General Counsel of the nearly 60-year-old financial community association. She remains a member of the Board of Directors, Executive Committee and leads FWA’s corporate restructuring initiative.

An ABA award-winning writer, Susan possesses a legal journalism background, having served as a business reporter and legal editor for the New York Law Journal and an editor for the National Law Journal’s GC Magazine. Prior to beginning her law career, Susan conducted an international business throughout Western and Eastern Europe, the Middle East, Asia and the Caribbean.

A member of the New York and New Jersey Bars, Susan is admitted to practice before the New York and New Jersey state courts and U.S. District Courts for the Southern District and Eastern District of New York and of New Jersey. She possesses a B.A. in Business Management from Simmons College, Boston, and a Juris Doctor degree from New York Law School (with honors and highest honors). She is a frequent lecturer at securities-related events and conferences in New York City and has organized and hosted programs featuring some of the leading figures in finance and law today, as listed below.


Conference Chair, “2013 Securities Litigation and Regulatory Conference: Insights and Challenges for Financial Services Attorneys”; Panel Moderator, “Exchanges, High Frequency Trading and Dark Pools.” (New York County Lawyers’ Association, November 2013).

Moderator, CLE, Bates Group LLC’s Experts’ Analysis Series, “FINRA’s New Suitability Rule: A Game Changer? Overview, Practical Applications and its Impact on Securities Litigation/Arbitration” featuring Bates’ Suitability Expert, Bruce Cramer. (September, October 2013)

Speaker, NYCLA’s Alternative Dispute Resolution Committee’s Arbitration panel (February 2014)

Speaker, New York State Bar Association’s 2014 Annual Meeting Conference, Committee on Women in the Law, “Show Me the Money: Compensation and Leadership Roles for Women Attorneys” panel (January 2014)

Opening Remarks/Organizer, “A Conversation with FINRA’s Chairman and CEO, Richard Ketchum,” hosted by the McGraw Hill Companies (FWA, October, 2012).

Opening Remarks, Holiday Benefit at the CME Group’s NYMEX featuring Leo Melamed, Chairman Emeritus CME Group, CNBC’s Sharon Epperson. (FWA, December, 2013)

Opening Remarks, A Conversation with Jeff Sprecher, Chairman & CEO, Intercontinental Exchange-NYSE, hosted by Wells Fargo (FWA, May 2013)

Organizer/Speaker, Dialogue with President George Bush Center’s 2013 Women’s Initiative Fellows (FWA, March 2013)

Host/Speaker with CNBC’s Tyler Mathisen, 29th Women of the Year Awards & Annual Dinner Benefit, featuring Dr. Judith Rodin, President, Rockefeller Foundation, Barbara Krumsiek, Chair, President/CEO, Calvert Investments, Inc; Betsy West, Executive Producer, Storyville Films and Makers: Women Who Make America (April 2013). Media Coverage Bloomberg News.

Led Delegation, Opening Remarks & Speaker: ”2013 FWA American Agenda Conference, Washington, DC,” featuring Alan Krueger, U.S. Cabinet Member and Chairman of President Barack Obama’s Council of Economic Advisors; Michael Donley, Secretary of the United States Air Force (March 2013); Hon. Carolyn Maloney, Congresswoman and Senior Member of the House Financial Service Committee

Organizer/CLE Moderator, “Women Trailblazers” featuring former Chief Judge Judith Kaye, Susan Blount, General Counsel, Prudential Financial, Inc., Sheila Davidson, General Counsel, New York Life, Inc., and Susan Merrill, Sidley Austin, former head of FINRA Enforcement (March 2011). Media coverage by Forbes Custom magazine,

Venue Organizer, “A Conversation with SEC Chairwoman Mary Schapiro with CNBC’s Closing Bell’s host Maria Bartiromo,” Financial Women’s Association (June 2010). National media coverage by CNBC, American Lawyer Media, Bloomberg, Thompson Reuters,

Faculty, “Securities Arbitration: The New World Order” CLE Conference, Discovery and Arbitration Panel, New York State Bar Association’s Committee on Securities Litigation and Arbitration (November 2009)

CLE Lecturer, St. John’s University of Law, Securities Arbitration Clinic, “Evaluating Claims and Drafting Answers” (October 2009, February 2011, and September 2011)

Opening Remarks/Organizer, “Managing FINRA Investigations and Proceedings” (New York County Lawyers’ Association, October 2014)


From 2011-2013 authored various position and legislative related papers

Securities Regulatory and Compliance Bulletin (for law firm), "FINRA Issues New Internet Guidelines" (January 2010)

Securities Arbitration Regulation Bulletin (for law firm), "FINRA's 2010 Objectives," January 2010

Securities Arbitration Bulletin (for law firm), "FINRA's New Motion to Dismiss Rules" (January 2009)

Securities Arbitration Regulation Bulletin (for law firm), "Highlights SIFMA Legal and Compliance January 2009 Luncheon"

"Networking," New York Law Journal Magazine (March 2009)

"Who is Lady Justice?" New York Law Journal Magazine (March 2008)

"When FINRA Speaks, Are You Listening?" Securities Arbitration Commentator (February 2008)

"Moments in History: 100-Year Timeline of New York Women in Law," New York Law Journal Magazine (March 2007)

From 2000-2005 authored over 200 newspaper articles


Featured in Forbes Investment Guide (December 2012) Special Section: "In Good Company: How Women Achievers Drive

Business Success." Distributed nationally and at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland (January 2013).

Featured in the Glass Hammer, Voice of Experience, Executives in Finance and Law (June 2013)

Interviewed, Voice of America's Alhurra T.V. at the NASDAQ (March 2013)

Interviewed, AM New York (September 2012)

Conference Delegate, Forbes Power Women's Summit: Power Redefined (May 2013)

Member, U.S. Congresswoman Maloney's "Lean In" Advisory Group

Recognized by the United Congress for Outstanding Leadership (Congressional Record, April 29, 2013)