United States Securities and Exchange Commission issues guidance regarding administrative proceedings

International Bar Association Anti-Corruption Committee News
September 2015
In this article, Leila Babaeva discusses recent guidance issued by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), which sets forth criteria the agency uses to decide whether to bring a new enforcement action as a civil action in a federal district court or as an administrative proceeding before an Administrative Law Judge (ALJ). "In recent years, the SEC has relied on expanded authority under the 2010 Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act to prosecute a significant portion of FCPA-related misconduct via administrative proceedings than through court-filed civil complaints," Babaeva said. Cases resolved via administrative proceedings require no judicial approval -- an important distinction as district court judges have recently demanded changes to negotiated settlements between U.S. government agencies and corporations. Babaeva said defendants accused of securities violations in administrative proceedings have increasingly tried to argue against forum choice.
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