Ethics Dept. of Justice

News & Analysis as of

Unpacking the Justice Department’s Compliance Remediation Standards (Part I of II)

The Justice Department has a lot to be proud about when it comes to its FCPA enforcement program. In one area in particular – promoting effective ethics and compliance strategies – DOJ’s FCPA prosecutors have played a...more

Yikes: The Perils of Remediation and Corporate Monitors

The Justice Department has raised the stakes on anti-corruption compliance. In other words, DOJ prosecutors expect companies to have more sophisticated and mature compliance programs. If a company walks into the Justice...more

Doing Compliance in an Economic Downturn

The city of Houston has seen a multi-year economic downturn from the drop in the price of oil. Every company in the energy space has been required to dramatically cut its work force, including unfortunately, it compliance...more

Lessons Learned and Compliance Trends from the VW and Takata Scandals (Part III of III)

When unraveling a major corporate scandal, especially multi-year schemes involving senior executives, the blame game or lessons learned approach can easily turn into a fruitless exercise. The VA and Takata scandals are...more

Volkswagen: When Car Companies Veer Off Course (Part I of III)

Corporate misconduct occurs in a variety of forms. Starting with the basic truism – companies act through people, and when companies engage in misconduct it requires the coordination and collaboration of multiple actors. The...more

The Real Explanation for the Record Year for FCPA Enforcement

All the FCPA prognosticators, predictors and paparazzi have missed the boat on understanding what happened this year – 2016, to make this a record year in FCPA enforcement. As a former public servant for over 20 years, I am...more

FCPA Predictions for 2017 (Part III of III)

With the new incoming administration, everyone is busy predicting major changes in DOJ FCPA enforcement. I do not share this view. Frankly, FCPA enforcement is more bipartisan than other controversial enforcement programs...more

Despite Privilege, GC May Pursue Whistleblower Retaliation Suit under SOX and Dodd–Frank

California’s USDC–ND ruled that Bio-Rad Laboratories’ former General Counsel may use privileged communications to prove his retaliatory-discharge case prosecuted under Sarbanes–Oxley and Dodd–Frank’s whistleblower...more

5 Trends in Whistleblower Hotlines and Protections to Be Aware of in 2017

Every year it’s safe to assume that our list of Top 10 trends will include the latest developments pertaining to helplines, whistleblower reporting and retaliation, and this year is no exception. We begin by examining some...more

Compliance Paid for Itself in Many Ways in 2016

“A culture of ethics ties long-term performance to the interests of long-term stakeholders.” — Larry Fink, Chief Executive of Blackrock The quote above was mentioned by Timothy Erblich, CEO of Ethisphere, at the...more

The Compliance Oversight Review Committee

This week has evolved into an exploration of different types of compliance committees a company might employ to make their compliance function more effective. On Monday, together with Baker Hughes Incorporated (BHI) Chief...more

The Board of Directors’ Compliance Committee

Yesterday, together with Baker Hughes Inc. (BHI) Chief Compliance Officer (CCO) Jay Martin, I wrote about a new and innovative compliance committee BHI has initiated, the GeoMarket Compliance and Ethics Committee. In...more

Third-Party Risk Programs Should Focus on Offense, not Defense

Just 43 percent of organizations surveyed in NAVEX Global’s 2016 Ethics & Compliance Third Party Risk Management Report said they evaluated third parties before engaging with them—down from 68 percent in 2015....more

AAG Caldwell Touts Success of FCPA Enforcement and Pilot Program

In a speech last week, Criminal Division Assistant Attorney General Leslie Caldwell touted the success of the FCPA Pilot Program. AAG Caldwell outlined the success of the FCPA enforcement program, listing many of the...more

4 Questions About the Yates Memo’s First Year

The release of the so-called Yates Memo in fall 2015 shook the compliance world. U.S. Deputy Attorney General Sally Q. Yates made it clear that federal regulators would look to combat corporate misconduct by “seeking...more

Monster Movie Month: Episode III – Son of Frankenstein and Evolution From Yates Memo and FCPA Pilot Program

Welcome to my third installment in this month’s classic monster movie festival. This year I am revisiting the Frankenstein series. Today I want to explore the final movie where Boris Karloff starred as Frankenstein’s Monster;...more

Landmark SEC Decision Cites Compliance, Diligence in Decision Not to Prosecute FCPA Violations

In a remarkable affirmation of the value of robust compliance and due-diligence programs, the Securities and Exchange Commission last month announced that it would not prosecute a U.S. company for potential violations of the...more

Good-Bye to Arnold Palmer and Revolutionizing Compliance

The golfing world and the world of beverages lost one of their giants earlier this week. I, of course, refer to golfing and beverage legend Arnold Palmer. The legend around the beverage is that at dinner one evening Palmer...more

Will incentive time bombs blow up your company?

Marc Hodak, an NYU Adjunct Professor and compensation consultant, spoke at the Ethical Systems event in New York a few months ago. He talked about “incentive time bombs,” where “bad behavior can hide behind good performance,”...more

Hallmark 3 – Oversight, Autonomy and Resources

I. Autonomy - The DOJ has made clear over the years the importance of this hallmark. In the FCPA Guidance it states, “In appraising a compliance program, DOJ and SEC also consider whether a company has assigned...more

Hallmark 2 – Code of Conduct and Compliance Policies and Procedures

The cornerstone of a Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) compliance program is its written protocols. This includes a Code of Conduct, policies and procedures. In the FCPA Guidance, the Department of Justice (DOJ) and...more

Compliance is a Business

Compliance is a business. That statement should not come as a shock or even a surprise to anyone who has worked in the corporate world. Every part of a business should work towards doing business. Yet many compliance...more

Compliance Training – Part II: Risk Ranking and Design

Yesterday I began what I thought would be a two-part series on compliance training.However, or perhaps more accurately, as usual, I got carried away so I am now off on a multi-part series on how to design, implement and...more

Compliance Training, Part I

In a recent Slate article, entitled “Ethics Trainings Are Even Dumber Than You Think”, author L.V. Anderson railed against what she termed box-checking training where companies put on training not to actually train employees...more

Third Party Risk Management: Balancing Due Diligence Screening and Monitoring

In response to aggressive FCPA enforcement and recurring problems with third parties, companies have spent substantial resources and time to design and implement comprehensive ethics and compliance programs. A key part of...more

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