Corporate crimes often receive less scrutiny than those involving violence. That said, people are acknowledging that financial misdealing can be equally harmful. In some cases, they are even more so.
This realization is causing the Department of Justice to toughen investigations. New policies are turning up the heat. Soon, it will be more likely than ever that financial professionals are defendants in a federal lawsuit.
What changes are coming
The specifics of what will change are not crystal clear. Crackdown mandates may continue to expand. Here are some adjustments we know to expect.
DOJ investigations are now going to be more thorough. Corporations will have their entire histories brought to light. Civil, criminal, and regulatory records will all face examination.
The standard of only focusing on individuals participating directly in misconduct is changing. Investigations may now expand to those with only tangential associations to wrongdoing.
New rules will mandate that companies provide nonprivileged information on investigatory targets. Seniority and position do not protect from these requests.
The DOJ wants to increase its use of corporate monitors. This shift applies to businesses in settlement negotiations and those under investigation.
How these changes will affect professionals
There has never been a better time for companies to tighten their ships. It is wise for businesses to start reviewing their compliance and corporate cultures. Falling short could lead to fines and jail time, as well as negative media attention.
The government is intent on prosecuting those who engage in corporate violations. Protect yourself by staying aware of the rules and remaining within the law.