Bingham enforcement lawyers have played a significant role in every major enforcement action on Wall Street in recent memory. Our Chambers-ranked securities enforcement team is one of the most well-regarded in the industry. Our team includes some of the industry’s most experienced counsel, sensitive to the nuances of working in a politically charged atmosphere and dedicated to helping clients negotiate an increasingly complex array of regulatory requirements and an enforcement environment in constant flux.
In the last five years, we have handled high-profile enforcement matters for major players in the securities industry and the “Big Four” accounting firms. Our lawyers have represented clients at the national and state levels in high-profile matters in the securities and investment management industries, including auction rate securities; insider trading; market timing and late trading; and the Global Research Analyst cases, often in matters with concurrent regulatory investigations, and related multijurisdictional civil or criminal actions. We are a leader in state enforcement matters.
Experience and multiple perspectives
Career practitioners whose enforcement work has earned the respect of the SEC staff, our team members include lawyers who have held positions with the SEC, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, FINRA and the FDIC. It is a mature team that understands the regulatory mindset, with depth and experience across the U.S. With the added perspective of our lawyers who have worked in-house, we offer the resources of a group that understands the securities, banking and accounting industries. This strength carries through to the U.K., where our enforcement team members in London are former senior regulators at the FSA, predecessor to the FCA and PRA.
Our partners have decades of experience practicing with the SEC Staff and Commissioners, and before FINRA and its predecessors. Members of our team practice before these regulators almost daily, giving us strong working relationships with and insight into the functional and operational levels of the enforcement division – where the recommendations about case determination are made.
We have extensive experience serving as SEC-approved independent consultant charged with conducting reviews and overseeing settlements mandated by the SEC, the states and the SROs. The SEC has approved our retention to serve as an SEC-approved independent consultant for major compliance and enforcement settlements.
Organized along SEC lines
With new leadership and staff, a new mandate, and a revitalized structure, SEC enforcement activity is likely to increase. Bingham’s team-based, cross-disciplinary approach to our securities practice enables us to field teams with the requisite experience and expertise to represent clients in matters aligned along the SEC’s new priorities.
Asset Management: We counsel and defend clients in connection with the structure or sale of every type of asset management product including retail investment products such as variable and fixed annuities, mutual funds and 529 plans, drawing upon the resources of our market-leading Investment Management Practice.
Market Abuse: We have considerable experience representing clients in insider trading cases and in a wide range of market manipulation cases. We work closely with our leading Trading and Markets team to provide in-house expertise to address these complex matters
Structured Transactions and New Products: We have directly relevant experience handling internal and regulatory investigations and in defending enforcement actions and litigation concerning auction rate securities; mortgage products; mortgage-based products; and other structured investment products, including insurance, investment advisory and securities products and services. We can tap the resources of our derivatives team and our market-leading securitization practice.
Municipal Securities and Pensions: With the considerable resources of our fixed income team and our Investment Management and Corporate practices, we advise on “pay to play” and other issues in the municipal securities market.
Foreign Corrupt Practices Act: As FCPA issues rear up more frequently in enforcement matters, we draw upon the in-house resources of our FCPA and Exon/Florio/CFIUS practitioners, and our White Collar enforcement team.
What we do
Team lawyers have represented clients in numerous formal and informal enforcement investigations and proceedings initiated by the SEC, FINRA and other securities industry self-regulatory organizations, state securities regulators and other entities with securities jurisdiction as well as securities regulators in the U.K. and Japan. We are experienced at defending clients at every stage of these matters — from the informal inquiry, through the investigation and “Wells” process, at trial or hearing, and on appeal. We defend individual and institutional clients in parallel investigations by state and federal criminal authorities and coordinate national responses for our clients when necessary. When the matter requires coordination with state attorneys general offices, we often work closely with our affiliate, Bingham Consulting, which helps businesses craft national approaches for their state issues.
Securities enforcement clients include, in addition to broker-dealers, issuers, underwriters, investment banks, accounting firms, mutual fund companies, investment advisers, hedge funds, public companies and their audit committees, special committees, and officers and directors.