The opioid crisis in the United States is not a new development; sadly, it has been around for years, as has D&O litigation relating to the crisis. Indeed, more than five years ago, I published a post in which I noted the outbreak at the time of a number of opioid-related securities suits. Now, in the latest of these opioid-related securities suits to be filed, and in the wake of the U.S. Department of Justice’s filings of a complaint in intervention in an opioid-related False Claims action against the company, a securities class action lawsuit has now been filed against the pharmacy company, Rite Aid Corporation. The March 20, 2023, Rite Aid complaint can be found here.Continue Reading Rite Aid Hit with Opioid-Related Securities Suit
In a September 15, 2022 speech, Deputy Attorney General Lisa Monaco announced new Department of Justice guidelines for prosecutors to use when assessing corporate criminality. Although the new guidelines address several issues, the primary focus of the guidelines is on individual accountability. Monaco emphasized at the outset of her speech that “the Department’s number one priority is individual accountability.” The new guidelines represent a clear signal of the Department’s renewed focus on corporate criminality enforcement. The text of Monaco’s speech can be found here, and the September 15, 2022 DOJ memo outlining the new guidelines can be found here.
Continue Reading Updated DOJ Corporate Enforcement Policies Emphasize Individual Accountability
In an October 28, 2021 speech, Deputy Attorney General Lisa O. Monaco announced important changes to the U.S. Department of Justice’s corporate criminal enforcement policies. Among other things, Monaco laid out changes to the agencies’ corporate cooperation expectations and an increased emphasis on individual accountability. In the following guest post, Michael W. Peregrine, a partner at McDermott Will & Emery LLP, takes a look the corporate governance implications of the new policies announced in Monaco’s speech. I would like to thank Michael for allowing me to publish his article as a guest post on this site. I welcome guest post submissions from responsible authors on topics of interest to this blog’s readers. Please contact me directly if you would like to submit a guest post. Here is Michael’s article.
Continue Reading Guest Post: Governance Implications of New DOJ Focus on Corporate Crime and Individual Accountability
One of the important questions about U.S. Department of Justice’s approach following the change of Presidential Administration two years ago was whether DOJ would continue emphasizing its policy of individual accountability in the agency’s 2015 statement known as the Yates Memo. In a recent speech, Deputy Attorney General Rod J. Rosenstein announced changes to the policy. The changes, which are more in the form of an adjustment rather than a wholesale change, makes it clear that companies seeking cooperation credit no longer need to identify “all” individuals involved in the wrongdoing, so long as the companies identify those who were “substantially involved” in the misconduct. The text of Rosenstein’s November 29, 2018 speech to the American Conference Institute’s International Conference on the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, at which he announced the changes, can be found here.
Continue Reading Department of Justice Eases “Yates Memo” Requirements for Cooperation Credit
Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein recently announced a new policy at the U.S. Department of Justice to address the “piling on” problem that corporate defendants can sometimes face – that is, the accumulation of penalties that can arise when multiple different federal agencies pursue enforcement actions against the corporate target based on the same alleged misconduct. In the following guest post, attorneys from the Paul Weiss law firm take a look at the new policy and its practical implications. I would like to thank the authors for allowing me to publish their article as a guest post on this site. I welcome guest post submissions from responsible authors on topics of interest to this blog’s readers. Please contact me directly if you would like to submit a guest post. Here is the Paul Weiss attorneys’ article.
Continue Reading Guest Post: DOJ Issues New Policy on Coordination of Corporate Penalties to Address “Piling On”
As observers have been monitoring the evolving policies and priorities of the Department of Justice in the Trump administration, one of the questions has been what the agency’s approach will be to the guidelines laid out in the so-called Yates Memo. The Yates Memo, named for its author, the former Deputy Attorney General and former Acting Attorney General Sally Yates, reflected a commitment to holding individuals accountable for corporate wrongdoing. In a recent speech, the current Deputy Attorney General Rod J. Rosenstein addressed the question of the current administration’s approach to individual accountability. His October 6, 2017 speech, a copy of which can be found here, appears to suggest that the current administration likely will continue to pursue the policies reflected in the Yates Memo. However, as discussed below, what that may mean in practice remains to be seen.
Continue Reading Deputy AG Emphasizes Continued Individual Accountability for Corporate Misconduct
Among the many questions surrounding the new incoming Presidential administration is the question of what direction the Trump administration will go with criminal and regulatory enforcement. And among the many specific questions under that topic heading is the question of whether or not the Department of Justice will continue the current agency policy of giving priority to holding individuals accountable for corporate wrongdoing. Based on early signs, all indications are that the current policy, embodied in the so-called Yates Memo, will continue under the new administration.
Continue Reading Will the DOJ Priorities in the Yates Memo Continue in the New Administration?
It has now been over a year since the U.S. Department of Justice released the so-called Yates Memo, in which the agency stated its policy focused on individual accountability for corporate wrongdoing. As attorneys from the McDermott, Will & Emery firm noted in an October 11, 2016 post on the Harvard Law School Forum on Corporate Governance and Financial Regulation blog (here), since the Yates Memo went into effect, observers have been watching for “telltale signs of whether the Yates Memo is really changing the way federal enforcement does business.” According to the blog post, two recent False Claims Act settlements that required corporate executives to make substantial monetary contributions to resolve civil enforcement actions filed against them may suggest that the anticipated Yates Memo-related change has arrived.
Continue Reading The Yates Memo and Civil Liability for Corporate Directors and Officers