DOJ Guidance on Individual Accountability for Corporate Misconduct: Implications for Companies

Understanding Key Provisions of the Yates Memo, Ensuring Compliance and Mitigating Legal Risks

Recording of a 90-minute CLE webinar with Q&A

Conducted on Thursday, March 23, 2017
Recorded event now available

This CLE webinar will provide guidance on the Department of Justice’s continuing efforts to hold individuals accountable for corporate misconduct. Our panelists will discuss DOJ guidance and examine the implications for corporations. Our panelists will also discuss how companies’ compliance programs and internal investigation procedures can be most effective in the context of these enforcement initiatives.


It has now been over a year since the DOJ issued the Yates Memorandum (Yates Memo) announcing the DOJ’s intention to target individuals for corporate misconduct. As is well known by now, the Yates Memo outlines six key principles—five of which specifically address prosecution of individuals.

With the benefit of more than a year since Yates was issued, our panelists will examine the real impact of Yates both so far and going forward. Among other things, the panel will review the following:

  • Are individual prosecutions more common now?
  • In what areas of law is DOJ focusing this effort?
  • How are companies protecting themselves—and employees—from more aggressive individual enforcement?
  • What tangible effects on companies’ compliance efforts have been caused because of Yates?
  • Is focus on individuals likely to continue in the Trump Administration?


  1. Background
  2. Yates Memo—overview
  3. Other relevant government action and guidance
  4. Practical implications for companies and their counsel
  5. Best practices for compliance—what companies should do now


The panel will review these and other key issues:

  • What are the changes to DOJ policy regarding individual accountability?
  • What are the implications of the DOJ policy shift for companies?
  • How are companies and counsel changing their approach to internal investigations and cooperation in light of the Yates Memo?


Thaddeus R. McBride, Partner
Bass Berry & Sims, Washington, D.C.

Mr. McBride represents companies and individuals in international trade regulatory, compliance, investigative, and enforcement matters involving U.S. economic sanctions and economic embargoes, U.S. export controls, FCPA, U.S. anti-boycott controls, U.S. customs and other import controls, anti-money laundering and other banking controls, and U.S. international trade enforcement and regulatory actions.

David Searle, Chief Compliance Officer and Associate General Counsel
Bristow Group, Houston

Mr. Searle oversees Bristow Group’s compliance with laws in the jurisdictions in which it operates, including laws related to export controls, anti-corruption, and fair competition. He previously served for four years as an Assistant U.S. Attorney in Houston, where he prosecuted corporate fraud and international money laundering cases. He was a member of the Organized Crime Strike Force and received multiple awards from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security for convictions obtained against human traffickers.


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