Matt Reinhard comments on the long-awaited FCPA guidance issued earlier this month by the Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). He said the guidance may in part be intended to avoid legislative reform efforts, and that it "is an effort by the enforcement authorities to indicate to Congress that they are on top of these issues and that they are responding to concerns that have been raised regarding the law's enforcement and further amendment is not necessary. Whether that is ultimately successful, I don't know. Only time will tell."
One of the most valuable aspects of the guidance is information about real cases that omit company names and hypothetical cases about situations that may or may not run afoul of the law, Reinhard said. Issues addressed include gifts, travel and entertainment of foreign officials, which are all issues companies have struggled with in complying with the FCPA.
"From those hypotheticals, you actually get a much better sense of the enforcement authority's thinking in that regard," Reinhard said.