Watch your step… Every week it seems there’s a new accounting scandal in the newspapers and on the airwaves as yesterday’s industry leader becomes today’s poster child for corporate bad behavior. With increased scrutiny from the government, the press and the public – and of course continued attention from the shareholder plaintiffs’ bar – it’s never been more important to ensure that your internal controls are effective and that when issues arise, they are handled promptly and skillfully.
The climate is especially volatile right now. Even the most seasoned corporate accounting and financial reporting departments are struggling to manage potential headline grabbing, hot-button issues, such as sub-prime losses, stock option backdating, and mortgage fraud. It can happen to anyone. No matter how well you think you have internal controls in place, you may find evidence of “creative accounting” in your organization that triggers an internal investigation. In short order, your company could find itself facing an SEC investigation or civil litigation, not to mention bad press.
Getting back on track In the event that an internal investigation or litigation defense becomes necessary, you need a skilled legal team at your side, helping you prepare for and execute on the right response and making sure every step is taken with the correct amount of diligence and consideration. Manatt’s Securities Litigation & Arbitration group is the right team. We can advise your company and your board in determining what steps are necessary, and then swiftly carry out the company’s response, so you run less risk of leading the nightly newscast for the wrong reasons.
Our goal is always to achieve favorable, swift resolutions for our clients before litigation commences or the matter proceeds to trial. However, in the event a matter heads to litigation or even trial, you can count on securities litigation trial experience from a team that includes former federal prosecutors, SEC attorneys and high-level government officials. In fact, our lawyers are among a select few who have successfully tried securities-related cases to jury verdict.
Manatt’s securities litigation team successfully represents clients in a full range of securities litigation and arbitration matters nationwide. We carry out confidential internal investigations of alleged misconduct in the area of securities law and financial reporting on behalf of corporations, boards of directors and board committees. We defend companies, their officers and directors, and other entities in securities class actions, shareholder derivative suits, and other private securities litigation, in federal and state courts around the country. We represent corporations and individuals in investigations and enforcement proceedings before the SEC and state regulators. We handle arbitration matters before FINRA and other industry regulatory authorities. And we represent corporate clients in litigation involving merger and acquisition transactions, including litigation between merger parties as well as shareholder litigation involving fiduciary duties and disclosure issues.
Recent Success Stories
In conjunction with our Corporate Investigations & White Collar Defense Practice Group, which includes former federal prosecutors, SEC attorneys and high-level government officials and other highly regarded criminal defense counsel, we skillfully advise and defend companies and individuals facing criminal and regulatory scrutiny and enforcement litigation arising out of securities law issues (including insider trading), thus ensuring a fully coordinated response in all criminal and civil “parallel proceedings.”
With Manatt’s vast multidisciplinary experience, our securities litigators are able to utilize the skills and experiences of colleagues in Manatt’s other practice and industry groups, including our financial institutions, corporate securities, capital markets, mergers and acquisitions, antitrust, environmental, government, healthcare, real estate, entertainment, tax and business litigation practices. With this backdrop of internal expertise, we focus on crafting strategic solutions to securities litigation issues and carrying out those solutions with individualized attention and aggressive execution.
With our extraordinary depth of trial experience and trial success, which includes obtaining an acquittal in a four-month criminal trial involving allegations of securities fraud, racketeering and conspiracy, we can take, and have taken, securities cases through trial to a defense verdict, if necessary.
Members of our securities litigation team have also represented:
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