DOJ and OIG Increasing Focus on Personal Executive and Board Accountability

Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates recently issued a memorandum (the “Yates memo”) on behalf of the Department of Justice (DOJ). The Yates Memo emphasizes DOJ efforts to hold individual wrongdoers accountable for corporate misdeeds. The guidance in the memo includes a combination of existing and new policies that have not previously been issued in writing.  it highlights six key measures that DOJ attorneys will utilize when investigating corporate wrongdoing:

  1. requiring organizations to meet additional conditions to receive any cooperation credit;
  2. focusing on individual actors within the organization at the beginning of civil and criminal corporate investigations;
  3. routine communicating and information sharing between civil and criminal attorneys handling corporate investigations;
  4. eliminating corporate resolutions that protect individuals absent extraordinary  circumstances;
  5. creating a clear plan to resolve individual cases before resolving corporate cases; and
  6. pursuing civil actions against an individual regardless of the  individual’s  resources or ability to pay.