Enforcement Actions Penalties

News & Analysis as of

Check Up or Pay Up: I-9 Compliance Fines Hit CA Company

On July 8, 2015, the Office of the Chief Administrative Hearing Officer (OCAHO), issued a decision finding Hartmann Studios, Inc. “liable for 808 violations of 8 U.S.C. § 1324a(a)(1)(B)”, namely hiring workers in the United...more

EPA nixes state exemptions on excess CAA emissions

Affirmative defenses commonly relied upon by facility operators to avoid civil and administrative penalties for violations of air emissions limitations during periods of facility startup, shutdown or malfunction (“SSM”) may...more

Dodd-Frank 180-Day “Deadline” For SEC to Take Action Not Really a Deadline After All

A three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit recently ruled that Section 4E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, 15 U.S.C. § 78d-5(a)(1) – which provides that “[n]ot later than 180 days after the...more

CFPB Jolts Loan Originator Over Mortgage Origination

On June 4, 2015, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) filed a complaint in the United States District Court for the Northern District of California against RPM Mortgage, Inc. (RPM), and its CEO, Erwin Robert Hirt....more

SEC Halts “Smart Contract” Exchange Built on Silicon Valley Start-Ups

Two entrepreneurs wanted to create a business that centered on valuing private start-up companies. They experimented with models that began with a variation of “fantasy sports,” changed to a contest and became a game. It...more

EPA Updates Its Audit Policy with "eDisclosure"

On June 10, 2015, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency hosted a webinar describing a plan to modernize the implementation of its April 11, 2000 Audit Policy. The plan – called eDisclosure – attempts to provide a...more

Another SEC Insider Trading Case: Does it Comply With Newman?

The SEC continues to bolster its allegations regarding the relationships between tipper and tippee in insider trading cases as well as the knowledge of the tippee. Whether those allegations will be sufficient to meet the...more

OSC “Pattern and Practice” Investigations to Continue

Over the past few years, the number of employer investigations—and perhaps more noteworthy, the amount of the penalties assessed—by the Office of Special Counsel for Immigration-Related Unfair Employment Practices (OSC) has...more

China Regulatory Enforcement Quarterly - Q1 – 2015 |

Inside This Issue: - Executive Summary - PRC Legal and Regulatory Updates - Major Enforcement News - China Communist Party Titles 101 - AIC Penalties Increase Risk of Dual Enforcement Actions - Frequently Asked...more

Employer’s confidentiality agreement triggers SEC action and penalty - review and revise agreements now

Consistent with its prior announcements that it will protect and encourage whistleblowers, the SEC recently announced its “first enforcement action” against a company for using allegedly restrictive language in an agreement...more

This Week In Securities Litigation

The SEC settled another action this week based on admissions of fact and that the Federal securities laws were filed, this time involving Oppenheimer. The action was based on the fact that the firm permitted an off-shore and...more

Former Compliance Officer Assessed Million Dollar Penalty For Role In Company's Money Laundering Violations

Corporate officers with compliance duties, take note: you may face personal liability for your role in failing to prevent your company's violations of federal law. This new reality comes courtesy of the U.S. Department of the...more

An Instant Message from the CFTC: Preserve Communications – Enforcement Is Up!

The U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (“CFTC”) released its annual enforcement review for 2014. The results—an impressive list of enforcement action success coupled with record fines. There were over $3.27 billion in...more

The High Cost of Whistleblowing

In a number of recent posts, we have highlighted the SEC’s whistleblower program, which offers awards of 10%-30% of the money collected where a whistleblower provides high-quality, original information that results in an SEC...more

Commissioner’s Concerns About Civil Penalties Temper SEC’s Release of FY14 Enforcement Results

On October 16, the SEC publicized its preliminary enforcement results for fiscal year 2014. In what it described as a “successful enforcement year,” the Commission brought a record 755 actions and obtained $4.16 billion in...more

SEC Settlement: The FCPA Risks of Entering New Markets

Entering into new, international markets may be good for developing business, but it also carries certain risks. This is particularly true in many countries where doing business may include making gifts, paying gratuities and...more

Guns and More Guns: SEC Hits Smith & Wesson for FCPA Violations

One thing the SEC likes to do is bring cases with a lot of deterrent value. That is, cases that it hopes will scare other people and companies into complying with the law. Often that means cases with large price tags...more

IRS Announces Changes to the Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program

As you may have read, the Internal Revenue Service (“IRS”) recently announced changes to its offshore voluntary disclosure programs and announced new options for taxpayers to come into compliance with their U.S. tax...more

Don’t try this at Home or Abroad: Export Controls and Sanctions Violations Lead to $21 Million in Penalties for Dutch Company...

We frequently discuss enforcement actions in this blog, because understanding enforcement is a key aspect of trade compliance. From a fifty-thousand foot view, each enforcement case serves as a cautionary tale about the...more

DEP Provides New Guidance on Community Environmental Projects in Lieu of Civil Penalties

Recently revised guidance issued by the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (the Department or DEP) concerning use of community environmental projects (CEPs) in lieu of civil penalties warrant the attention...more

Department of Justice Cites Poor Compliance Program and Lack of Cooperation in Extracting Significant FCPA Penalties in Marubeni...

The importance of a company’s response to a Department of Justice (“DOJ”) investigation into possible violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (“FCPA”) was highlighted last week when Marubeni Corporation (“Marubeni”)...more

US Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit Upholds Fraud Penalties for Ex-GlobeTel Executives

The US Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit recently upheld a summary judgment decision granted in favor of the US Securities and Exchange Commission against three former GlobeTel Communications Corp. (GlobeTel)...more

DOJ Secures $200,000 Lobbying Disclosure Act Penalty

A default judgment secured in U.S. v. Biassi Business Services Inc., D.D.C. may be indicative of a more aggressive Lobbying Disclosure Act (LDA) enforcement policy, and the U.S. Attorney's Office is considering pursuing...more

What A Long Strange Trip It’s Been – The Bilfinger FCPA Settlement

Earlier this week the Department of Justice (DOJ) announced it had resolved an ongoing Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) with German entity Bilfinger SE (Bilfinger). This case involved the same background facts and events...more

Federal energy enforcement: $304 million in penalties in 2013

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission has released its report on its enforcement activities in fiscal year 2013. The FERC's 2013 Report on Enforcement (69-page PDF) gives the public insight into how the Commission's...more

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