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Corporate Compliance

Corporations face new and growing demands not only to comply with all the laws and regulations that apply to their business, but also to organize their compliance efforts in a way that stands up to scrutiny. That scrutiny focuses on a company’s efforts to meet the full range of its legal duties-not just how it meets its Sarbanes-Oxley duties, but also how it approaches obligations pertaining to employment practices, job safety, product safety, privacy, price fixing, insider trading, bribery, and export controls, to name just a few. Scrutiny can come from internal or external sources. Internally, boards of directors, in their oversight function, can (and should) examine the way managers approach their company’s many legal duties.

Externally, government investigation of a company’s conduct often starts with an inquiry into the rigor of management’s efforts to follow the rules. Civil litigants also focus on this inquiry when pursuing claims against management and directors for breach of fiduciary duty.

Solid Compliance and Ethics Program

The key to measuring up under this scrutiny is for a company to establish a solid compliance and ethics program-one that meets the standards by which federal law defines compliance effectiveness. A compliance and ethics program meeting these standards demonstrates the company’s due diligence in seeking to prevent and detect legal violations. It provides management and directors with data permitting an informed assessment of a company’s performance of its many legal and regulatory duties. It also shows government enforcement officials that the company takes its duties seriously, not just with lip service but with genuine focus and discipline. Even more importantly, it provides a tool for continuously improving this category of business performance through the application of basic quality control principles very much like the principles most companies already apply in their core business.

Our services include:

  • Assessing the current state of a company’s overall compliance processes, applying the standards of the revised U.S. Sentencing Guidelines to that assessment.
  • Designing compliance processes focusing on specific categories of a company’s legal obligations, such as employment law, privacy, the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, or export controls.
  • Designing risk assessment processes tailored to each client’s specific circumstances.
  • Training boards of directors and audit committees about their duties in overseeing their company’s compliance and ethics program.
  • Designing employee training programs, including delivery of substantive training in the areas of law that are most significant to a company’s business.
  • Reviewing compliance performance for companies subject to industry-specific compliance program requirements, such as financial services, health care services and government contracting.
  • Conducting internal investigations of alleged employee or officer misconduct.

For more information about our Corporate Compliance practice, please contact:
Kelly A. Saindon