Willful Misconduct

News & Analysis as of

The Second Appellate District Finds UCLA Not Liable For Third Party Criminal Acts of a Student With a Known Mental Illness

The Regents of the University of California, et al. v. Superior Court of Los Angeles County Katherine Rosen, Real Party in Interest - Court of Appeal, Second Appellate District(October 7, 2015) - The issue in this...more

The Appropriate Punishment for Actual and Perceived Threats in the Workplace-Take Two; the Appellate Court (Sensibly) Speaks

Last year, I wrote about an unsuccessful attempt to vacate a puzzling arbitration award that overturned the termination of a school custodian who made threats of violence. In a decision that was officially issued on October...more

PCAOB Announces First Settled Order with Admissions

Last week, the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (PCAOB) joined the list of regulators who will, in certain circumstances, seek admissions of liability from audit firms and individuals in settlements. Although the...more

Deflategate: Four Games and Four Lessons for Unionized Employers

This week would have marked the return of Tom Brady, had his four game suspension not been reversed by the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York. Much ink has been spilled over Brady’s suspension...more

The Chill is Gone: SEC Wants Unfettered Whistleblowers

The SEC continues its efforts to support whistleblowers. The whistleblower program promulgated by the Commission under the Dodd-Frank Act offers rewards to individuals who report securities law violations. As we have...more

SEC Commissioners Making a “Noisy Exit”

Securities and Exchange Commission members Daniel M. Gallagher and Luis A. Aguilar will soon leave the SEC, but neither is keeping quiet about the SEC’s treatment of chief compliance officers (CCOs). Gallagher recently...more

DOJ Reaffirms Commitment to Prosecuting Individuals, Toughens Expectation for Corporate Response

The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) recently issued a memorandum ("The Yates memo") on September 9, 2015 by Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates, reaffirming the Government's commitment to prosecuting individuals. Say...more

Accidentally On Purpose: Washington Court Finds Coverage For Contempt Of Court Based On “Misunderstanding”

Professional liability policies cover claims based on the insured’s alleged negligent acts, errors or omissions, and not claims for “sanctions or penalties” for “willful” professional misconduct. But the insurer’s duty to...more

New Jersey Supreme Court Holds That Economic Loss is Not Needed To Recoup a Former Employee’s Salary for Breach of the Duty of...

On September 22, the New Jersey Supreme Court unanimously gave the green light to awards of the remedy of equitable disgorgement, even in the absence of economic loss, as a fair and practical response to an employee’s...more

DOJ Unveils New Policy on Individual Liability in White-Collar Prosecutions

On September 9, the Department of Justice (DOJ), issued a policy memorandum concerning DOJ’s goal of holding individuals accountable for corporate fraud or other misconduct. While some of the guidelines set forth in the...more

The DOJ’s New Policy of Prosecuting Individuals

On September 9, 2015, Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates of the United States Department of Justice (“DOJ” or the “Department”) issued a new policy memorandum (the “Yates Memo”) entitled “Individual Accountability for...more

Securities Litigation and Enforcement Newsletter

A CD or not a CD, That is the Question… That the Auditors Should Have Answered - A headline-grabbing SEC enforcement action last week against BDO USA and several of its national partners may lead audit firms to insist on...more

Pointing the Finger The New Price of Corporate Cooperation

On September 9, 2015, Sally Quillian Yates, the Deputy Attorney General, issued a memorandum announcing the Department of Justice’s (DOJ) new guidelines regarding its intensifying focus on individual wrongdoers in the context...more

Department of Justice Focuses on Individual Accountability

In a move certain to attract the attention of corporate executives, the Department of Justice, on September 9, 2015, issued a new policy memorandum regarding the prosecution of individuals in corporate fraud cases. Titled...more

Corporate Wrongdoing: More Civil and Criminal Liability for Individuals?

The US Department of Justice has issued a memorandum to all of its prosecuting Divisions, directing changes to the principles applied by DOJ in prosecuting civilly or criminally individuals who engage in corporate misconduct....more

DOJ Guidance Prioritizes Individuals in Criminal and Civil Corporate Enforcement Actions

A serious shift of focus to individual accountability may impact traditional corporate defense and settlement tactics. On September 9, 2015, the Department of Justice (DOJ) issued a set of guidelines that formally revise...more

"Department of Justice Issues Guidance to Criminal and Civil Prosecutors to Facilitate Individual Prosecutions in Corporate...

On September 9, 2015, the Department of Justice (the Department) publicly announced that it had issued guidance to its criminal and civil prosecutors that purports to change, at least in part, the Department’s approach to...more

OSHA Violations: Managers and Others May Have Personal Civil and/or Criminal Liability

Historically, there are few criminal convictions for violations of the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, and the majority of those violations were related to dishonesty during OSHA inspections and interviews. Though...more

Bridging the Week - September 2015

Alleged Flash Crasher's Formal Indictment Provides More Details Regarding His Purported Spoofing - The US Department of Justice filed a formal indictment against Navinder Singh Sarao in a US federal court in Chicago on...more

New Department of Justice Enforcement Policy Focuses on Corporations Providing Evidence Against Individuals

On September 9, 2015, the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) issued a memorandum to federal prosecutors instructing them to increase their focus on the prosecution of individuals involved in corporate fraud and financial...more

New Department of Justice Memo to Increase Prosecutions of White Collar Executives and Other Employees

New policy changes implemented by the Department of Justice have potentially significant implications for companies and individuals facing DOJ investigations. The new policy may create additional obstacles for companies...more

Misconduct in the C-Suite: The United Airlines Scandal

It was like a bolt out of the blue – United Airlines’ CEO and two senior executives hastily announced their resignation as a result of their involvement in a bribery scandal with the New York Port Authority....more

Unpacking the Yates Memo: What the "New" DOJ Policy Really Means

The DOJ made a significant splash on Wednesday when a memorandum from Deputy Attorney General Sally Quillian Yates to all DOJ attorneys, including the U.S. Attorneys across the country, announced a policy to increasingly...more

Blog: BEWARE: DOJ Announces New Policy to Increase Prosecutions of Individuals Involved in Corporate Fraud

Earlier this week, Deputy Attorney General (AG) Sally Quillian Yates issued a memorandum to Department of Justice (DOJ) attorneys discussing the need to hold individuals accountable for corporate wrongdoing in both civil and...more

Executives Beware: The DOJ and SEC Have Set Their Sights on Individual Wrongdoing

The DOJ’s Yates Memo makes individual prosecutions a higher priority and makes a company’s own identification of potentially culpable individuals an explicit factor in assessing cooperation credit....more

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