The Department of Justice Criminal Division recently issued a Guidance Document for prosecutors: Evaluation of Corporate Compliance Programs.
In this document, the DOJ outlines three questions prosecutors should ask when making an "individualized determination of a corporate compliance program's effectiveness:
- "Is the corporation's compliance program well designed?"
- "Is the program being applied earnestly and in good faith?" In other words, is the program being implemented effectively?
- "Does the corporation's compliance program work" in practice?
The answers to these questions help prosecutors decide if they should prosecute a corporation; if monetary penalties should be imposed (and if so, how much); and what compliance obligations should be incorporated into a corporate integrity agreement.
The DOJ's new guidance includes a multitude of considerations prosecutors can use to evaluate how well a corporation's compliance program satisfies these three questions.
MPA recommends including these three questions in your own compliance program effectiveness review.