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Regulators send a perverse message by using our compliance programs against us

Joe Murphy | November 15, 2016

Within compliance and ethics circles, there is an ongoing conversation that is not gaining nearly as much attention as it deserves. The topic is the way in which corporate counsel deals with internal investigations, the bottom line of which is that lawyers are doing less writing and more speaking in their internal investigative work. As a result, there could be less that might be caught in litigation and used against their clients. There has even been discussion that this is not as negative a development as one might think, and that investigations could proceed even with this restriction.

There is an important point here, however, that is missing. First, in corporate investigations, writing is essential. There needs to be a verifiable record of what happened and why. There must be a basis to ensure disciplinary action is taken as appropriate. But most importantly, there needs to be a root cause analysis if there was indeed any wrongdoing, and the lessons learned need to be...

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