News & Analysis as of

SEC Gives Itself the Home Court Advantage in an Accounting Fraud / Internal Controls Action Against a Corporate CEO

An otherwise mundane SEC announcement on July 30, 2014 of an enforcement action charging a public company CEO and CFO with accounting fraud and internal controls violations is significant because the SEC is proceeding against...more

Supreme Court Protects Whistleblowing Employees of Mutual Fund Adviser

Whistleblowing law continues to develop, with a recent U.S. Supreme Court decision holding that, despite ambiguous statutory language, the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002 protects employees of private companies serving as...more

Investment Management Update

In July 2014, the SEC settled the previously reported proceeding involving Chariot Advisors, and its former owner, Elliott Shifman, concerning charges of violating and aiding and abetting the violation of Section 15(c) of the...more

Why Lawyers Should Care about the New COSO Framework

The Committee of Sponsoring Organizations of the Treadway Commission (COSO) 1992 Internal Control—Integrated Framework has long been recognized as the starting point for designing, implementing and conducting internal...more

Inside The Courts - May 2014 | Volume 6 | Issue 2

In This Issue: - AUDITOR LIABILITY: ..Athale v. Sinotech Energy Ltd., No. 11 Civ. 05831(AJN) (S.D.N.Y. Feb. 21, 2014) - BYLAWS: ..ATP Tour, Inc. v. Deutscher Tennis Bund (German Tennis...more

Do Dodd-Frank's Stress Testing Results Hold Hidden Risks?

While the recent Dodd-Frank stress test results of the nation's 30 biggest banks might seem reassuring, prudent policy makers and practitioners should be wary. Like airport security, many are asking, ‘‘Are we...more

Before The Whistle Blows: Understanding And Addressing The Expanding Scope Of Whistleblower Protections Under Sarbanes-Oxley And...

The Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002 (“Sarbanes-Oxley”) was enacted following the accounting scandals of the early 2000s involving Enron, WorldCom and other public companies. Congress passed the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and...more

First SEC Whistleblower Receives Additional $150,000 Payout

Two years after issuing its first payout under the whistleblower provisions of the Dodd-Frank Act of 2010, aggressive collection efforts by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) have recovered an additional $500,000...more

Recent Charges Against China-Based Companies Demonstrate SEC’s Efforts to Bring More Financial Fraud Cases

SEC Chair Mary Jo White and Enforcement Director Andrew Ceresney have repeatedly said that financial fraud would be a priority of the SEC’s enforcement program. Two recent cases involving companies with China-based operations...more

Supreme Court Expands Scope of Sarbanes-Oxley Whistleblower Protections

The Issue: My company is not publicly traded, but provides services to companies that are. Do Sarbanes-Oxley whistleblower protections extend to our employees? The Solution: Yes. Analysis: Enacted in the wake of...more

In Case You Missed It - Interesting Items for Corporate Counsel

The Director of the SEC’s Division of Corporation Finance, Keith Higgins, recently gave the keynote address, here, at the 2014 Angel Capital Association Summit. He focused on the following three items on the SEC rulemaking...more

Business News Digest – April 2014

In this issue: - Cybersecurity Assessments – Using the Tool Well - A SOX in the Gut: Supreme Court Vastly Expands Workplace "Whistleblower" Law - SEC to Scrutinize Never-Examined Investment...more

The SEC Whistleblower Program

On Oct. 1, 2013, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) announced that it had awarded more than $14 million to an unidentified whistleblower who provided information leading to a successful enforcement action — by far...more

U.S. Brings Criminal Charges For False Sarbanes-Oxley Certifications

An indictment was recently unsealed where the United States recently brought criminal charges, for among other things, false certifications under Section 302 and 906 of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act. The allegations are of course...more

SEC’s Amicus Brief: Internal Whistleblower Reports Covered By Dodd-Frank Anti-Retaliation Provision

As we previously discussed, courts have struggled with determining the scope of the protections in Dodd-Frank’s anti-retaliation provisions. On the one hand, Dodd-Frank defines a “whistleblower” as any individual, or group of...more

Supreme Court Holds That Sarbanes-Oxley Whistleblower Provision Applies To Employees Of Investment Advisers And Other Private...

On March 4, 2013, the Supreme Court issued an opinion with broad implications for mutual funds and certain other SEC-regulated companies that conduct business through or with privately-held entities (such as investment...more

In Case You Missed It - Interesting Items for Corporate Counsel (Cumulative) - March 13, 2014

The U.S. Supreme Court recently ruled in Lawson v. FMR LLC that the whistleblower provisions of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act protect employees who work for contractors and subcontractors of public companies and not just employees...more

$6 Million SOX Whistleblower Verdict In California

On March 5, 2014, a California jury awarded $6 million to a former accounting executive at Playboy Enterprises Inc. (the “Company”), finding that the Company discharged the former employee in violation of Section 806 of SOX....more

Private Equity Newsletter - Winter 2014: Is the Swim Worth It? Weighing a U.S. Listing as Exit Strategy

Over the past two years, Dechert has witnessed a noticeable increase in interest from non-U.S. companies in pursuing a listing of equity securities on a U.S. securities exchange. This has been due in part to the continued...more

Private Company Employees Who Blow the Whistle on Public Company Fraud Are Protected from Retaliation

When it passed the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002 (“SOX”), Congress established protections against retaliation for “employees” who report fraud at public companies. Since then, however, courts and commentators have disagreed...more

Act Now Advisory: As Defendant, Obama Administration Takes Narrower View of Whistleblower Protections Than as Enforcer - Will This...

Employers attempting to manage corporate compliance programs while balancing privacy concerns and whistleblower protections might find a certain irony, perhaps empathy, in the Obama administration's recent petition for U.S....more

This Week In Securities Litigation (Week ending March 7, 2014)

The Supreme Court was the focus of securities litigation this week. Oral argument was presented in the long running Halliburton case where the Petitioners are seeking to rewrite the rules for bringing securities fraud class...more

Supreme Court Expands SOX Whistleblower Protection

Yesterday, in a 6-3 vote, the U.S. Supreme Court issued a landmark decision greatly expanding the whistleblower protections of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act (SOX) to cover employees of private entities contracting with publicly...more

Clawback Policies–What to Do?

Clawbacks have been around for more than a decade. - Beginning in 2002, Sarbanes-Oxley required CEOs and CFOs to reimburse incentive or equity compensation received or profits from the sale of company securities during...more

Board Investigations And The Curse Of The Mummy’s Tomb – Part II

Yesterday I began an exploration of a recent article in the Corporate Board magazine, entitled “Successful Board Investigations” by David Bayless and Tammy Albarrán, partners in the law firm of Covington & Burling LLP. In...more

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