Best Lawyers for Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) in America

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Lawyer
  • Location:
    Columbia, South Carolina
  • Practice Areas:
    Appellate Practice Energy Regulatory Law Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Litigation - Environmental
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Atlanta, Georgia
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Litigation - Securities Securities Regulation Litigation - Banking and Finance
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Miami, Florida
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy)
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Wichita, Kansas
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Securities Legal Malpractice Law - Defendants Bet-the-Company Litigation Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Litigation - Antitrust Commercial Litigation Litigation - Labor and Employment Litigation - Intellectual Property
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Los Angeles, California
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Securities Commercial Litigation Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Bet-the-Company Litigation
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Boston, Massachusetts
  • Practice Areas:
    Commercial Litigation Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy)
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Dallas, Texas
  • Practice Areas:
    Commercial Litigation Corporate Compliance Law Litigation - ERISA Litigation - Securities Litigation - First Amendment Litigation - Mergers and Acquisitions Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Corporate Governance Law
Lawyer
David E. Barry was awarded 2020 "Lawyer of the Year" in Elasticsearch.PracticeArea

David E. Barry

Pierce Atwood LLP
  • Location:
    Portland, Maine
  • Practice Areas:
    Bet-the-Company Litigation Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Commercial Litigation Criminal Defense: White-Collar
Lawyer
James J. Belanger was awarded  "Lawyer of the Year" in

James J. Belanger

J. Belanger Law PLLC
  • Location:
    Tempe, Arizona
  • Practice Areas:
    Criminal Defense: General Practice Ethics and Professional Responsibility Law Commercial Litigation Criminal Defense: White-Collar Qui Tam Law Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy)
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Memphis, Tennessee
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Banking and Finance Bet-the-Company Litigation Litigation - Securities Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Litigation - Real Estate Commercial Litigation
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Salt Lake City, Utah
  • Practice Areas:
    Commercial Litigation Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy)
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Seattle, Washington
  • Practice Areas:
    Bet-the-Company Litigation Litigation - Mergers and Acquisitions Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Commercial Litigation Litigation - Securities Litigation - ERISA
Lawyer
  • Location:
    New Orleans, Louisiana
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Bet-the-Company Litigation Commercial Litigation
Lawyer
  • Location:
    New Orleans, Louisiana
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Mergers and Acquisitions Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Litigation - Securities Litigation - Banking and Finance
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Boston, Massachusetts
  • Practice Areas:
    Biotechnology and Life Sciences Practice Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy)
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Kansas City, Missouri
  • Practice Areas:
    Commercial Litigation Litigation - Antitrust Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy)
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Washington, District of Columbia
  • Practice Areas:
    Commercial Litigation Litigation - Bankruptcy Litigation - Securities Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Legal Malpractice Law - Defendants
Lawyer
  • Location:
    New York, New York
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy)
Lawyer
  • Location:
    West Palm Beach, Florida
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Commercial Litigation Litigation - Securities
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Washington, District of Columbia
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Intellectual Property Appellate Practice Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Litigation - Antitrust Litigation - First Amendment Litigation - Environmental Commercial Litigation
Lawyer
  • Location:
    New York, New York
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Securities Appellate Practice Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Commercial Litigation
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Indianapolis, Indiana
  • Practice Areas:
    Commercial Litigation Securities Regulation Litigation - Securities Bet-the-Company Litigation Litigation - Mergers and Acquisitions Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy)
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Columbia, South Carolina
  • Practice Areas:
    Administrative / Regulatory Law Utilities Law Litigation - Environmental Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Energy Regulatory Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Omaha, Nebraska
  • Practice Areas:
    Commercial Litigation Litigation - Antitrust Litigation - Environmental Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy)
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Washington, District of Columbia
  • Practice Areas:
    Appellate Practice Bet-the-Company Litigation Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Criminal Defense: White-Collar Litigation - Intellectual Property Commercial Litigation
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Chicago, Illinois
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Commercial Litigation
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Tallahassee, Florida
  • Practice Areas:
    Health Care Law Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy)
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Los Angeles, California
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Securities Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Commercial Litigation Criminal Defense: White-Collar
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Atlanta, Georgia
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Litigation - Banking and Finance Litigation - Securities
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Washington, District of Columbia
  • Practice Areas:
    Administrative / Regulatory Law Litigation - Antitrust Bet-the-Company Litigation Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Government Relations Practice Commercial Litigation Criminal Defense: White-Collar
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Salt Lake City, Utah
  • Practice Areas:
    Commercial Litigation Litigation - Environmental Bet-the-Company Litigation Litigation - Intellectual Property Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Litigation - Antitrust
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Austin, Texas
  • Practice Areas:
    Commercial Litigation Personal Injury Litigation - Defendants Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Personal Injury Litigation - Plaintiffs Bet-the-Company Litigation Litigation - Real Estate Litigation - Trusts and Estates Litigation - Construction
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Raleigh, North Carolina
  • Practice Areas:
    Health Care Law Appellate Practice Bet-the-Company Litigation Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Litigation - Antitrust Commercial Litigation Administrative / Regulatory Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Albany, New York
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Commercial Litigation Health Care Law Litigation - Antitrust
Lawyer
  • Location:
    West Palm Beach, Florida
  • Practice Areas:
    Securities / Capital Markets Law Litigation - Securities Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Commercial Litigation Securities Regulation
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Dallas, Texas
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Real Estate Commercial Litigation Litigation - Securities Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy)
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Jacksonville, Florida
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Government Relations Practice Government Contracts Litigation - Environmental
Lawyer
  • Location:
    New York, New York
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Securities Criminal Defense: White-Collar Commercial Litigation Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy)
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Boston, Massachusetts
  • Practice Areas:
    Commercial Litigation Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy)
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Washington, District of Columbia
  • Practice Areas:
    Bet-the-Company Litigation Securities / Capital Markets Law Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Securities Regulation Corporate Governance Law Corporate Compliance Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Troy, Michigan
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Environmental Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Washington, District of Columbia
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy)
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Dallas, Texas
  • Practice Areas:
    Commercial Litigation Criminal Defense: White-Collar Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Litigation - Securities
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Baton Rouge, Louisiana
  • Practice Areas:
    Corporate Law Corporate Governance Law Reinsurance Law Closely Held Companies and Family Businesses Law Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Litigation and Controversy - Tax Litigation - Securities Business Organizations (including LLCs and Partnerships) Mergers and Acquisitions Law Government Relations Practice Corporate Compliance Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Roseland, New Jersey
  • Practice Areas:
    Commercial Litigation Litigation - Antitrust Health Care Law Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy)
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Dallas, Texas
  • Practice Areas:
    Bet-the-Company Litigation Litigation - Securities Antitrust Law Litigation - Mergers and Acquisitions Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy)
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Rochester, New York
  • Practice Areas:
    Commercial Litigation Bet-the-Company Litigation Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Litigation - Securities
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Charlotte, North Carolina
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Litigation - Banking and Finance Criminal Defense: White-Collar Commercial Litigation Bet-the-Company Litigation Litigation - Securities
Lawyer
  • Location:
    New York, New York
  • Practice Areas:
    Commercial Litigation Ethics and Professional Responsibility Law Legal Malpractice Law - Plaintiffs Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Legal Malpractice Law - Defendants
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Jacksonville, Florida
  • Practice Areas:
    Bankruptcy and Creditor Debtor Rights / Insolvency and Reorganization Law Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Commercial Litigation Litigation - Construction Litigation - Insurance Securities Regulation Litigation - Banking and Finance Personal Injury Litigation - Plaintiffs Product Liability Litigation - Defendants Litigation - Securities
Lawyer
  • Location:
    New York, New York
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Securities Commercial Litigation Criminal Defense: White-Collar Bet-the-Company Litigation Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy)
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Boston, Massachusetts
  • Practice Areas:
    Criminal Defense: White-Collar Biotechnology and Life Sciences Practice Commercial Litigation Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Bet-the-Company Litigation
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Washington, District of Columbia
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Commercial Litigation
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Newark, New Jersey
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Commercial Litigation Criminal Defense: White-Collar
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Overland Park, Kansas
  • Practice Areas:
    Commercial Litigation Mining Law Litigation - Antitrust Corporate Law Appellate Practice Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Bet-the-Company Litigation Litigation - Banking and Finance Securities / Capital Markets Law Litigation - Securities
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Portland, Maine
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Construction Appellate Practice Bet-the-Company Litigation Mediation Litigation - Mergers and Acquisitions Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Commercial Litigation Arbitration Personal Injury Litigation - Defendants
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Chicago, Illinois
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Commercial Litigation
Lawyer
Carter G. Phillips was awarded 2020 "Lawyer of the Year" in Elasticsearch.PracticeArea

Carter G. Phillips

Sidley Austin LLP
  • Location:
    Washington, District of Columbia
  • Practice Areas:
    First Amendment Law Commercial Litigation Media Law Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Bet-the-Company Litigation Litigation - First Amendment Appellate Practice Litigation - Patent
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Nashville, Tennessee
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Litigation - Banking and Finance Commercial Litigation Litigation - Securities
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Charleston, West Virginia
  • Practice Areas:
    Oil and Gas Law Litigation - Municipal Commercial Litigation Mining Law Environmental Law Natural Resources Law Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Litigation - Environmental Energy Law Litigation - Land Use and Zoning
Lawyer
  • Location:
    West Hartford, Connecticut
  • Practice Areas:
    Criminal Defense: White-Collar Litigation - Antitrust Bet-the-Company Litigation Antitrust Law Commercial Litigation Criminal Defense: General Practice Litigation - Intellectual Property Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy)
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Jackson, Mississippi
  • Practice Areas:
    Commercial Litigation Litigation - Antitrust Litigation - Bankruptcy Workers' Compensation Law - Employers Litigation - Insurance Litigation - Banking and Finance Legal Malpractice Law - Defendants Personal Injury Litigation - Defendants Insurance Law Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy)
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Houston, Texas
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Antitrust Commercial Litigation Bet-the-Company Litigation Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy)
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Tallahassee, Florida
  • Practice Areas:
    Appellate Practice Bet-the-Company Litigation Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Commercial Litigation Ethics and Professional Responsibility Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Boston, Massachusetts
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy)
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Phoenix, Arizona
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Commercial Litigation Bet-the-Company Litigation Litigation - Securities
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Tucson, Arizona
  • Practice Areas:
    Personal Injury Litigation - Defendants Commercial Litigation Litigation - Real Estate Mass Tort Litigation / Class Actions - Plaintiffs Litigation - Banking and Finance Litigation - Labor and Employment Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Personal Injury Litigation - Plaintiffs
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Portland, Oregon
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Mergers and Acquisitions Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Litigation - Banking and Finance Litigation - Securities Commercial Litigation
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Boston, Massachusetts
  • Practice Areas:
    Commercial Litigation Criminal Defense: White-Collar Qui Tam Law Bet-the-Company Litigation Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy)
Lawyer
  • Location:
    New York, New York
  • Practice Areas:
    Criminal Defense: White-Collar Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy)
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Louisville, Kentucky
  • Practice Areas:
    Appellate Practice Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Bet-the-Company Litigation
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Tampa, Florida
  • Practice Areas:
    Financial Services Regulation Law Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Banking and Finance Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Seattle, Washington
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Corporate Compliance Law Criminal Defense: White-Collar Commercial Litigation Litigation - Securities
Lawyer
  • Location:
    New York, New York
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Commercial Litigation
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Des Moines, Iowa
  • Practice Areas:
    Water Law Administrative / Regulatory Law Energy Law Communications Law Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy)
Lawyer
  • Location:
    New York, New York
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Criminal Defense: White-Collar
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Charlotte, North Carolina
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Securities Bet-the-Company Litigation Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Criminal Defense: White-Collar
Lawyer
  • Location:
    New York, New York
  • Practice Areas:
    Criminal Defense: White-Collar Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Commercial Litigation Litigation - Securities
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Washington, District of Columbia
  • Practice Areas:
    Appellate Practice Native American Law Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Commercial Litigation First Amendment Law Bet-the-Company Litigation Litigation - Intellectual Property Criminal Defense: White-Collar Litigation - First Amendment
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Washington, District of Columbia
  • Practice Areas:
    Commercial Litigation Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy)
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Sioux Falls, South Dakota
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Banking and Finance Administrative / Regulatory Law Energy Law Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Commercial Litigation Litigation - Labor and Employment Health Care Law Bet-the-Company Litigation Litigation - Antitrust
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Louisville, Kentucky
  • Practice Areas:
    Criminal Defense: White-Collar Personal Injury Litigation - Defendants Litigation - Municipal Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Commercial Litigation
Lawyer
Mark W. Williams was awarded  "Lawyer of the Year" in

Mark W. Williams

Sherman & Howard L.L.C.
  • Location:
    Denver, Colorado
  • Practice Areas:
    Banking and Finance Law Arbitration Communications Law Technology Law Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy)
Lawyer
  • Location:
    New York, New York
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Securities Commercial Litigation Litigation - Antitrust Litigation - Bankruptcy Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Bankruptcy and Creditor Debtor Rights / Insolvency and Reorganization Law
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Chicago, Illinois
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Criminal Defense: White-Collar
Lawyer
  • Location:
    Birmingham, Alabama
  • Practice Areas:
    Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Litigation - Securities Commercial Litigation Litigation - Banking and Finance

  • Location:
  • Practice Areas:

Practice Area Definition

Litigation - Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy) Definition

Defending organizations and individuals in regulatory enforcement actions entails interacting with a complex web of federal and state administrative agencies, statutes, regulations, and rules. Federal regulatory agencies in the securities/commodities, telecommunications, and energy fields include the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, Commodity Futures Trading Commission, Federal Communications Commission, and Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. Most states also have their own companion regulatory agencies and utility commissions, each with their own enforcement regimes.

Additionally, certain organizations and individuals may be subject to disciplinary investigations and action by self-regulatory organizations overseen by an administrative agency, such as the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority or the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board. Many regulatory enforcement actions are civil proceedings; however, federal and state criminal agencies, including the Department of Justice and state Attorneys General, may share enforcement authority. Particularly egregious transgressions thus may be subject to criminal investigation and enforcement as well.

Regulatory enforcement matters are initiated in a variety of ways, including by a whistleblower tip, an agency’s own monitoring of the industry, or self-reporting by a firm or individual. Enforcement matters typically begin as a fact-finding investigation, which are often nonpublic. Agencies may have the authority to seek documents from companies, as well as to subpoena individuals to provide sworn testimony on the record. Information may be sought from third parties, as well as from firms and their current or former employees. Additionally, internal investigations conducted by independent outside counsel may precede or run in parallel with a regulatory investigation. Once an investigation is completed, enforcement personnel typically make a recommendation about the appropriate enforcement action to take, or whether to drop the matter. If approved, an enforcement action frequently, but not always, is filed as a public proceeding.

Regulatory enforcement defense attorneys counsel organizations and individuals through investigations and, if needed, litigation. Defense counsel acts as the primary contact with agency personnel, often gleaning valuable insights into an investigation’s direction and scope in the process, and presenting opportunities to advocate against further action involving a client. As a result, counsel frequently is retained early in an investigation. Likewise, regulatory enforcement attorneys regularly conduct, or represent individuals in, internal investigations. Regulatory enforcement counsel also defends clients against claims alleged in filed enforcement actions, which may proceed as an administrative hearing or as a lawsuit in the federal or state courts.

Brian Neil Hoffman, Of Counsel
Morrison & Foerster LLP

Morrison & Foerster LLP logo

Defending organizations and individuals in regulatory enforcement actions entails interacting with a complex web of federal and state administrative agencies, statutes, regulations, and rules. Federal regulatory agencies in the securities/commodities, telecommunications, and energy fields include the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, Commodity Futures Trading Commission, Federal Communications Commission, and Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. Most states also have their own companion regulatory agencies and utility commissions, each with their own enforcement regimes.

Additionally, certain organizations and individuals may be subject to disciplinary investigations and action by self-regulatory organizations overseen by an administrative agency, such as the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority or the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board. Many regulatory enforcement actions are civil proceedings; however, federal and state criminal agencies, including the Department of Justice and state Attorneys General, may share enforcement authority. Particularly egregious transgressions thus may be subject to criminal investigation and enforcement as well.

Regulatory enforcement matters are initiated in a variety of ways, including by a whistleblower tip, an agency’s own monitoring of the industry, or self-reporting by a firm or individual. Enforcement matters typically begin as a fact-finding investigation, which are often nonpublic. Agencies may have the authority to seek documents from companies, as well as to subpoena individuals to provide sworn testimony on the record. Information may be sought from third parties, as well as from firms and their current or former employees. Additionally, internal investigations conducted by independent outside counsel may precede or run in parallel with a regulatory investigation. Once an investigation is completed, enforcement personnel typically make a recommendation about the appropriate enforcement action to take, or whether to drop the matter. If approved, an enforcement action frequently, but not always, is filed as a public proceeding.

Regulatory enforcement defense attorneys counsel organizations and individuals through investigations and, if needed, litigation. Defense counsel acts as the primary contact with agency personnel, often gleaning valuable insights into an investigation’s direction and scope in the process, and presenting opportunities to advocate against further action involving a client. As a result, counsel frequently is retained early in an investigation. Likewise, regulatory enforcement attorneys regularly conduct, or represent individuals in, internal investigations. Regulatory enforcement counsel also defends clients against claims alleged in filed enforcement actions, which may proceed as an administrative hearing or as a lawsuit in the federal or state courts.