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

Understanding Current Government Positions, Ensuring Compliance, and Mitigating Legal Risks

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

This program is included with the Strafford CLE Pass. Click for more information.
This program is included with the Strafford All-Access Pass. Click for more information.

Conducted on Tuesday, April 7, 2020

Recorded event now available

or call 1-800-926-7926

This CLE course will guide counsel 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.


In 2019, the Department of Justice continued its focus on enforcing its criminal laws against individuals. In particular, the DOJ’s FCPA unit brought charges against an unprecedented number of individuals. This trend of individual enforcement in FCPA cases and more generally is expected to continue.

Since issuance of the Yates Memo in 2015, the DOJ has maintained its focus on targeting individuals for corporate misconduct. The DOJ updated its U.S. Attorneys’ Manual in late 2018 and incorporated the Yates Memo, which outlines six fundamental principles--five of which specifically address the prosecution of individuals. The government apparently believes, correctly in our view, that taking meaningful enforcement action against individuals is an effective means of deterring misconduct.

In this timely program, our panelists will examine the impact of the DOJ’s focus on individual enforcement, both to date and on a going forward basis. Among other things, the panel will review the following:

  • What types of conduct is the DOJ pursuing in individual enforcement actions under the FCPA?
  • In what other areas of law is DOJ focusing its efforts?
  • How are companies responding to more aggressive individual enforcement?
  • What are the tangible effects on companies’ compliance efforts since the Yates memo?
  • How should companies and senior executives, as well as directors, protect themselves from individual liability?


  1. Background
  2. Relevant standards governing enforcement against individuals
  3. Examples of recent enforcement actions
  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:

  • How is DOJ policy regarding individual accountability being reflected in DOJ enforcement actions?
  • 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?


Yi, Abby
Abby Yi

Bass Berry & Sims

Ms. Yi represents companies in connection with internal and government investigations concerning white collar and...  |  Read More

Thaddeus R. McBride

Bass Berry & Sims

Mr. McBride represents companies and individuals in international trade regulatory, compliance, investigative, and...  |  Read More

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