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With our global footprint and on-the-ground experience in multiple jurisdictions our Antitrust & Foreign Investment team supports clients through the broad spectrum of challenges that arise before, during and after an investigation into anticompetitive behaviour. Whether it’s a cartel, an abuse of dominance, a market investigation or a complex vertical investigation, we can guide your strategy of engagement with competition authorities and private litigants across the lifecycle of an investigation.
Business crime related investigations, for example those involving allegations of bribery and corruption, fraud, money laundering or sanctions, can be a serious threat to your reputation and your business. Our global team, which includes former senior prosecutors and regulators from key enforcement agencies, has extensive experience and expertise to advise you on strategic decisions and practical steps relating to the most challenging investigations (whether internal or external), including dealing with authorities and helping you insulate your business from future risk.
We know investigations keep our corporate GCs awake at night. With our global footprint, on-the-ground experience, deep corporate relationships and sector experience, our investigations lawyers can support and guide through every step of the process. Whether it's an internal investigation or one instigated by an enforcement agency, our pragmatic and thoughtful advice, together with deep practical experience, will ease the process. We get to the bottom of the facts fast, and work with our clients on consequence and reputation management, remediation, and recurrence avoidance.
Data privacy or cyber incidents require a crisis response, and our global team has deep experience advising clients on some of the most serious hacking, ransomware and data breach crises in the last decade. We are in frequent contact with key regulators and are in the best possible position to advise you on critical decisions to manage and contain issues, as well as to assist you in relation to internal or external investigations.
Regulated utilities are increasingly being subject to both civil and criminal investigations, for example for environmental breaches, customer treatment and financial market conduct. Our cross-practice Energy & Infrastructure investigations team comprises individuals with deep sectoral knowledge who have helped shape the regulatory regime for electricity, gas and regulated utilities in the UK and across the world. We combine that knowledge with investigations best practice to secure the best outcomes for our clients.
Our global, multidisciplinary ESG team is at the forefront of supporting clients on all aspects of environmental and climate change matters, soft law human rights standards and emerging regulatory expectations, advising on business ethics issues and designing governance frameworks, compliance systems and crisis response strategies across the full spectrum of ESG issues. We act on standalone ESG mandates as well as providing ESG input to support businesses in broader crises, including in relation to investigations (criminal and civil), public inquiries, litigation and stakeholder engagement. We have a deep understanding of the shifting ESG landscape, stakeholder perceptions and the need for a sensitive approach on ESG matters to achieve successful outcomes.
We have unparalleled experience advising financial institutions, corporates and senior executives on their most complex and sensitive regulatory investigations and disciplinary proceedings. We engage proactively and constructively with regulators before they reach conclusions – an approach we have used to secure successful outcomes for many clients. Our clients benefit from our excellent insight into how regulators work and interact. Our team includes individuals who have worked in enforcement at many of the most active regulators, including the DOJ, SEC, FCA, PRA and SFC.
Online safety is one of the newest frontiers in the trend towards greater regulation of online content. New regulatory regimes are emerging across the globe in an attempt to protect users against harmful content online. Our multi-jurisdictional cross-practice team can assist you in navigating regulatory or other investigations and enforcement action.
Our clients trust us with their most high-profile, complex and sensitive people and culture-related investigations, often where regulators are involved. We regularly advise on HR investigations (e.g. disciplinary and grievance processes), and undertake independent investigations into workplace culture (including allegations of bullying, discrimination and harassment), as well as diversity, equity and inclusion matters. Our significant experience includes advising on remuneration-related issues that arise before, during and following the outcome of an investigation (e.g. obligations to freeze or adjust variable pay), particularly in the context of regulators’ evolving expectations in this area.
Our market-leading investigations team can advise you on the constantly evolving regulatory landscape and help you to navigate internal and external regulatory investigations in the professional services sector. We have extensive experience assisting clients on high-value, complex domestic and international investigations with significant potential reputational and other consequences on their business and the practitioners involved. Our commercially-minded, global team operates seamlessly to advise you on steps relating to the investigation, implications from its findings, interactions with regulators and remediation.
The sports sector is going through a period of rapid change: with increasing revenues and prominence comes ever-greater regulatory and public scrutiny. Our global cross-practice sports sector team has advised teams, clubs, leagues, governing bodies, corporates, financial sponsors and high net-worth individuals on the full range of sporting and commercial issues, including high-profile investigations and disputes concerning sporting, financial and cultural issues. We are one of only a small number of elite global law firms that can assist those in the sports sector with their most business-critical investigations.
Public interest in what is perceived as aggressive tax planning is high. Tax authorities around the world are under increased pressure to actively investigate and fight tax avoidance. We have built a global tax investigation practice advising on complex tax investigations, which can be proactively initiated by clients internally to minimize their exposure or externally triggered by criminal proceedings initiated by tax authorities, public prosecutors and other authorities. We advise our clients on the full spectrum of tax investigations with a particular focus on high profile, multi-jurisdictional issues.
In our Investigations Insights podcast series, thought leaders and subject matter experts from our cross-practice Investigations network explore some of the challenges and complexities that specialist investigations work can present, and share best practice and guidance.
Unannounced inspections or dawn raids by antitrust authorities require a rapid and coordinated response. Linklaters has extensive experience of assisting clients with dawn raids, ensuring a unified and efficient response to regulators across multiple jurisdictions and protecting our clients’ rights in any subsequent cartel or other antitrust investigation.
In this podcast, members of our Global Business Crime team and alliance partner Webber Wentzel talk about what South Africa’s addition to the Financial Action Task Force’s grey list means for companies with businesses or investments in South Africa.
Enforcement of antitrust laws continues to evolve quickly. Whilst there was (understandably) a quieter period over the pandemic, as has occurred after other crisis situations, enforcement is expected to step up in 2022 and beyond. Companies around the globe must stay abreast of the trends and respond to new risk areas.
US DR partner Doug Davison is joined by guests Singapore DR partner Jelita Pandjaitan and Hong Kong DR partner Andrew Chung. Together they discuss current issues in handling whistleblower allegations including what this can mean for corporations, boards, executives and employees across Hong Kong and Singapore.
In this series of bite-sized podcasts, our global team discuss the hottest topics in the Dispute Resolution Business Crime and Investigations space. These podcasts provide commentary and insights on the latest trends in criminal enforcement across the globe: from bribery and corruption to money laundering and sanctions.
Recent years have seen a step up in the offering of dedicated commercial courts across the world, often with the promotion of them as dispute resolution “hubs”.
In this podcast series, we ask our leading Business Crime lawyers to highlight the most important topics in the space in particular jurisdictions, with insightful commentary on the latest developments in criminal enforcement across the globe.
Linklaters has worked with Opus 2 to tailor and rollout Opus 2 Investigations across its global network, a game-changing legal technology which provides a more flexible, dynamic and efficient way for lawyers and clients to manage key aspects of an investigation.
In this publication we look at eight key jurisdictions in this new frontier: analysing the current position in Australia, France, Germany, Singapore and the United States, as well as bold proposals put forward by the EU, Ireland and the United Kingdom.
The Financial Reporting Council (the "FRC") has published the set of principles that its replacement regulator the Audit, Reporting and Governing Authority ("ARGA") will use when assessing whether it is in the public interest for it to take regulatory action. This 'public interest test' will help ARGA shape its regulatory perimeter, impacting the types of regulatory action taken by the regulator, including supervisory engagement and enforcement actions.
9 March 2023
With increasing emphasis being placed on ESG by regulators and governments, adhering to environmental legislation has become even more significant for businesses. However, it is not always easy to spot environmental crime and to prevent the proceeds of this crime being inadvertently laundered through a company’s supply chain. If this occurs, it can lead to criminal liability for the company and its management in the UK and elsewhere, as well as very material reputational harm. UK companies should be alert to who they are doing business with – particularly in high risk industries and jurisdictions – to mitigate the risk of criminal liability at home.
16 February 2023
The CJEU recently shed light on the disclosure provisions of the Cartel Damages Directive. In its judgments in PACCAR and RegioJet, the CJEU ruled on the temporal scope of application of these provisions as well as the scope of the disclosure obligations. While these decisions are (again) good news for plaintiffs, defendants and competition authorities are likely to be less pleased.
13 February 2023
Linklaters employment law specialists Sinead Casey and Nick Marshall, along with Alison Wilson and Elly Proudlock from our Dispute Resolution team, have written about whistleblowing issues which commonly arise in UK investigations, particularly where there are parallel investigations by regulators or law enforcement agencies.
8 February 2023
Whistleblowing continues to be high up on the agenda for many employers. We are pleased to have written about the UK perspective on whistleblowing in the new edition of “The Practitioner’s Guide to Global Investigations”.
7 February 2023
Recent discrimination and integrity investigations in cricket have highlighted the importance for sports governing bodies to have robust and effective internal processes in place. This post examines sanctioning issues under a couple of high-profile investigations and considers what lessons can be learned from these processes.
23 January 2023
Changes to the U.S. Criminal Division’s FCPA Corporate Enforcement Policy have been announced. The new policy will offer a presumption of a declination to companies who voluntarily self-disclose misconduct to the Criminal Division, fully cooperate and appropriately remediate. The changes are intended to increase the incentives for corporate cooperation with the DOJ.
10 January 2023
Is a CMA information request to a foreign entity extraterritorial when the entity is part of a group with UK operations? BMW says yes and refuses to comply; CMA says no, and imposes its maximum fine. BMW will challenge the fine in a critical test case for the CMA’s post-Brexit information gathering powers, which fits neatly into the trend of the CMA’s ongoing procedural crackdown.
5 December 2022
Driven by shared attention toward Russia and China, U.S. federal agencies are increasingly looking to coordinate with counterparts on national security priorities. An emerging nexus between economic, technological, and security policy, in addition to human rights concerns, has led to a patchwork of mutually reinforcing sanctions, export controls, and anti-corruption regimes. This phenomenon could provide a roadmap for future coordinated action and coalition-based responses to major geopolitical developments.