New York Federal Court Holds Dodd-Frank Rule Does Not Bar Late SEC Suits

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On March 24, the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York held that a Dodd-Frank Act rule requiring the SEC, within 180 days of notifying a target of the pendency of an investigation, to file an action or obtain an extension of time from an SEC director, does not provide for the dismissal of an enforcement action that does not comply with the rule. SEC v. NIR Group, LLC, No. 11-4723, slip op. (E.D.N.Y. Mar. 24, 2013). In deciding a motion in which the SEC sought to halt discovery into its compliance with the rule, the court explained that the statute does not explicitly provide for dismissal of an enforcement action that does not comply with the 180-day requirement, but that the absence of such a remedy does not render the provision superfluous. The court determined that evidence concerning compliance with the internal deadline is not relevant to the action. For that and other reasons, the court held that the evidence sought was not discoverable.


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