From now on, when an investor comes across a problem relating to a stock market transaction, s/he can seek online resolution.
Starting today, a smart online dispute resolution portal — launched to resolve the disputes arising out of the securities market — goes live.
The portal, launched at the behest of capital markets regulator Sebi, is meant to facilitate resolution of disputes between investors and regulated entities.
The Sebi circular on July 31 states that disputes between investors/ clients and listed companies arising out of the latter's activities in the securities market will be resolved in accordance with the circular.
While sharing details on common online dispute resolution (ODR) portal, the circular says that market infrastructure institutions (MIIs) will establish and operate an ODR portal.
The MIIs will make joint efforts to develop and operationalise the ODR platform.
For the purposes of this platform, the MIIs will enter into an agreement amongst themselves which will outline the nature of their responsibilities, the cost of development, operating, upgradation, maintenance and for inspection and audit of the ODR platform.
When will investors approach ODR?
The investor will take up their grievance with the market participant by lodging a complaint directly with the concerned market participant. If the grievance is not redressed satisfactorily, the investor may escalate the same through the SCORES (Sebi complaints redress system) portal.
After exhausting all available options for resolution of the grievance, if the investor is still not satisfied with the outcome, one can initiate dispute resolution through the ODR portal.
Alternatively, the investor can initiate dispute resolution through the ODR portal if the grievance lodged with the concerned market participant was not satisfactorily resolved.
How will it function?
To ensure that this portal functions efficiently, Sebi stated that all listed companies/ intermediaries and regulated entities i.e., market participants (as mentioned in general parlance) will enrol on the ODR portal. They are also advised to display the link to the ODR portal on the home page of their websites and mobile apps.
To register a complaint, follow these steps:
1. Click on ‘create’ account to register on the platform
2. Click on file a new dispute to begin
3. Select the intermediary against which you wish to file a dispute
4. Select the relevant Category for your dispute
5. Enter details of the dispute and attach relevant documents
6. After your dispute has been filed, you can track progress easily under the dispute timeline.
What will happen after complaint is filed
The ODR Portal shall have the necessary features and facilities to enrol the investor/client and the Market Participant, and to file the complaint and also to upload any documents.
The portal will also have a facility to give status updates on the complaint which would be obtained from the ODR institutions.
The ODR institution that receives the reference of the complaint will appoint a sole independent and neutral conciliator from its panel of conciliators.
Such conciliator shall conduct one or more meetings for the disputing parties to reach an amicable and consensual resolution within 21 days
If the process of conciliation is successful, the same shall be concluded by a duly executed settlement agreement between the disputing parties.