This year general counsel and their companies can expect the government to continue seeking massive financial settlements for wrongdoing, require more admissions of guilt and demand information to prosecute more individual employees, according to a new analysis from Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz.
When the government goes after a corporation, it imposes “jaw-dropping fines and penalties,” Wachtell said. As examples, the law firm cited the record $8.9 billion penalty for BNP Paribas bank to resolve sanctions violations; a $2.6 billion settlement for Credit Suisse Group in a criminal tax probe of its banks; and a $1.2 billion penalty for Toyota Motor Corp. to resolve safety issues.
The cost of wrongdoing is expected to continue rising this year. But there is one helpful strategy for corporations that want to get on the good side of government prosecutors: Help nail the perpetrator.
The Wachtell memo explained: The U.S. Department of Justice “signaled, in a closely watched speech by principal deputy assistant attorney general for the Criminal Division Marshall Miller, that the price for obtaining cooperation credit now includes disclosing information leading to the prosecution of individual employees.”