To deter the increasing number of bribery and corruption offenses among US entities, intensified Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) enforcement actions continue to be a focus area this year. Specifically, the FCPA is requiring companies to retain their company’s record “in reasonable detail, [and to] accurately and fairly reflect the transactions and dispositions of [assets]” to conform with the FCPA’s books and records requirements. Failure to comply could lead to legal lawsuits and hefty fines.
The fiscal year 2020’s proxy season is marked with significant developments that companies must carefully consider. A number of these concerns include the Institutional Shareholder Services (ISS) proposed proxy voting policy changes as well as significant trends and developments from last year which are expected to have a noteworthy impact on the upcoming legal and regulatory landscape.
The aggressive enforcement of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) continues to be a priority for the Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). Seven enforcement actions were made during the third quarter of 2019 with about $78.5 million in disgorgement and penalties. Top areas of enforcement include corporate compliance individual accountability, international cooperation, and multi-jurisdictional coordination.
The next proxy season is expected to have significant changes and developments because of the COVID-19 global crisis. In line with this, the release of the Institutional Shareholder Services' (ISS) Annual Benchmark Policy Survey, which outlines important voting policy revisions and risks amid the pandemic, must be carefully considered.
The False Claims Act (FCA) remains to be the primary tool used by the government in fighting fraudulent crimes in various sectors. With the significantly increasing number of settlements under FCA for the past years and the heightened enforcement actions that expose several industries to the risk of investigations, companies must always be in the know of the recent developments shaping the landscape. An in-depth understanding of the trends will help them avoid liability risks and ensure compliance.
With the new administration and several notable issues continuously emerging in the backdrop, an increase in enforcement actions is expected to hound the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) landscape bringing both complexity and new compliance challenges to businesses. Significant developments affecting large corporate FCPA settlements, multi-jurisdictional FCPA matters, and increased individual enforcement need crucial consideration and anticipation from companies and their counsel.
Halfway into President Trump's administration, the Department of Justice (DOJ) provided a clearer image of its enforcement priorities for the False Claims Act (FCA).
In response to the uncertainties brought by the COVID-19 crisis, congress had passed several economic relief opportunities for distressed companies significantly impacted by the pandemic. However, along with these opportunities are heightened levels of scrutiny and enforcement efforts from the government to root out potential fraud under the False Claims Act (FCA) against companies taking advantage of these funds.