Heidi E. VonderHeide


Heidi specializes in representing financial institutions, investment advisers, and broker-dealers in litigation matters. Her securities practice involves handling both customer and industry disputes, as well as regulatory matters. She has defended clients in matters pending before FINRA, the NFA, CTFC, SEC, and in state and federal courts.

Education & Admissions


  • Loyola University Chicago

    (B.A., cum laude, 2004)

  • Loyola University Chicago School of Law

    (J.D., magna cum laude, 2007)


  • State of Illinois
  • U.S. District Court, Northern District of Illinois



  • Defends individuals and entities in all stages of examinations, investigations, and administrative proceedings initiated by the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) including appeals to the Commission and/or federal courts.
  • Defense of FINRA examinations or investigations, including representation at on-the-record (“OTR”) testimony, responding to 8210 requests, and handling the Wells process.
  • Defense of FINRA Enforcement actions from inception through hearing and, if necessary, the appellate process.
  • Advise clients on issues affecting membership and/or association including Statutory Disqualification (including Dodd-Frank implications), the MC-400 Application process, and the 1017 process.
  • Defends clients in connection with examinations, investigations, or proceedings instituted by state securities regulators.
  • Defends individuals and financial institutions against customer complaints of all varieties including disputes involving allegations of securities fraud, unsuitability, defamation, breach of fiduciary duty, fraud, negligence, overconcentration, and failure to supervise.
  • Experience in a wide variety of products including, limited partnerships, private placements, TICs, DSTs, REITs, and traditional securities.
  • Defense of FINRA and SEC Enforcement actions involving anti-money laundering (AML), registration issues, customer identification programs (CIP), net capital, and other non-sales practice issues.
  • Defends financial institutions in arbitration actions before the NFA, FINRA, and AAA on a wide range of customer claims.


  • Successfully defended an Investment Advisor in a SEC Administrative Proceeding against fraud allegations regarding supposed inadequacy of disclosures in Form ADV related to compensation and other supposed conflicts of interest. All charges filed against our client were dismissed. (Coverage in: Law360, National Law Journal, AmLaw Daily, BloombergBusinessand Houston Chronicle)
  • Successfully defended a national bank, sued in its capacity as successor to WaMu, by demonstrating that the plaintiff’s claims were barred by the federal Financial Institutions Reform, Recovery, and Enforcement Act of 1989 (“FIRREA”).  The decision was a case of first impression for the Illinois Appellate Court.

Publications & Presentations



  • “Burning Regulatory Hot Spots Coming from Washington,” panelist, IA Watch, IA Compliance: The Full 360° View Midwest Conference, Chicago (June 2018)
  • “FINRA in 2018,” panelist, Ulmer, Financial Services & Securities Litigation Hot Topics 2018 Seminar, Chicago (May 2018)
  • “CCO Liability: What Risks Remain and What Can You do to Minimize Them?” IA Watch, IA Regulatory Compliance Watch Webinar (July 2017)
  • “CCO Liability: An Unvarnished Look at the Risks Along with Realistic Actions to Protect Yourself,” panelist, IA Watch, IA Compliance Watch Conference, Washington D.C. (April 2017)
  • “Oh no! Is that FINRA knocking on your door? Tips for Navigating a FINRA Investigation and Enforcement Action,” panelist, Ulmer, Financial Services & Securities Litigation Hot Topics 2016 Seminar (November 2016)
  • “PTI: Hot Topics from the U&B Broker-Dealer Blog,” panelist, Ulmer, Financial Services & Securities Litigation Hot Topics 2015 Seminar (November 2015)



  • Chicago Bar Association


  • Named to the Illinois Super Lawyers Rising Stars list (2016; 2017)
  • Named an “Emerging Lawyer” in a survey of lawyers by the Law Bulletin Publishing Company (2016-2018)

Media Mentions

Regulatory Compliance Watch, November 15, 2018, “Four years on and $700,000 in, The Robare Group fights on