Corporate Compliance & Internal Investigations

An effective corporate compliance program and promoting a culture of adhering to it are integral to avoiding government investigations.  Businesses and institutions should implement reasonable and carefully structured policies and procedures that call for employees to act honestly and legally in carrying out the mission of their employer.  Promoting a “culture of compliance” serves to identify employee non-compliance.  When it is learned that a rogue employee has engaged in misconduct, it is necessary to identify its extent, assess its impact, and evaluate any related business practices.

Because a proactive approach is best, we counsel clients on preventive measures that can be implemented in an effort to secure employee compliance and thereby avoid government investigations altogether.   We have evaluated, developed and implemented business compliance and ethics programs for national and international clients, and have advised management and boards on corporate governance issues.  We have significant experience in both drafting codes of conduct and related policies and in developing appropriate training programs.

One of the goals of an effective compliance program is to create mechanisms designed to identify potential misconduct by a rogue employee.  Such a program serves to compartmentalize issues that if not identified or left unaddressed could lead to compliance shortcomings within the organization that may result in a government investigation.  With a team that includes two former U.S. Attorneys, three former Assistant U.S. Attorneys and a former U.S. Senator, our firm knows how to conduct discreet internal reviews and investigations.

We also have the experience to advise clients on the best manner of handling the information that is developed during the internal review or investigation.  There are times when disclosure of the findings of an internal investigation to the government is either required by law or is in the client’s best interest.  There are other times, however, when disclosure may not be appropriate.  Our extensive prosecutorial and government experience and our relationships with the law enforcement community enable us to guide clients as they tackle these difficult issues.

When a client is faced with a government investigation, we are able to demonstrate to the relevant authorities how a concern has been addressed proactively and show that new or improved procedures have been implemented to prevent similar problems from recurring.  Such facility and understanding of the government’s perspective are crucial to establishing credibility with government investigators and promoting a dialogue that focuses on remedies and assurances of future compliance that minimizes the likelihood of punitive measures.

The effective and comprehensive internal investigations we have completed include ones we conducted at the request of large corporations, publicly traded companies, a professional sports team, healthcare entities, public bodies and a large public university.

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Dowd Bennett is a litigation firm with extensive courtroom experience. Led by trial-seasoned lawyers, including former federal prosecutors and judicial law clerks, our team shares tenacity, a passion for seeing cases through trial and a complete commitment to client service.