Regardless of the nature of your business, regulatory compliance will be fundamental to the success of your commercial activity.
Failure to do so can result in remediation costs, fines and criminal proceedings, depending on the nature of the regulatory breach. These proceedings can have a significant impact on your business, potentially damaging the image of your brand, your personal and professional standing, as well as the impact that substantial financial penalties will have on the future of your company. With your livelihood and reputation at risk, you need to be certain that you can call on experienced legal professionals to offer the most robust defence to any alleged breaches.
The regulatory and compliance solicitors at Wilford Smith specialise in acting on behalf of individuals, companies and organisations, providing expert advice on regulatory compliance, investigations, enforcement and prosecution proceedings. The UK’s regulatory framework is increasingly complex, to ensure that you are fully complying with relevant legislation you need the support and advice of a legal team with extensive experience representing businesses in all aspects of the regulatory process. As a full-service law firm, Wilford Smith’s team of regulatory and compliance solicitors are able to work closely with colleagues with expertise in other areas of law, such as criminal litigation, employment, commercial and public law. Regardless of the nature of your regulatory framework, our team of specialist lawyers are available to give you immediate advice in a clear and straightforward manner.
Prosecutions by other agencies
Businesses and individuals that are engaged in fraudulent financial practices, bribery and corruption have increasingly found themselves subject to greater levels of scrutiny over the last decade. So-called ‘white collar’ crime has become a particular concern for the UK Government, the result being that the regulatory framework around the corporate and financial sectors has been significantly strengthened during this time. Examples of this can be seen in the work of the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), which carries out investigations into financial crime and regulatory compliance in the financial services industry, and the Serious Fraud Office (SFO), which has responsibility for investigating and prosecuting fraud cases that are serious or complex in nature, as well as those involving bribery and corruption.
If you are subject to an investigation by one of these regulatory bodies, the impact on your business can be substantial. The FCA and SFO have extensive powers, which enable them to impose fines, pursue criminal proceedings and carry out confiscation investigations and request confiscation orders. If you think you may be at risk of prosecution by another agency, the regulatory and compliance solicitors at Wilford Smith have the required skills, knowledge and determination to ruthlessly develop a top-level strategy on your behalf.
Health and safety
All employers have legal duties and obligations to ensure their employees, visitors to their premises and members of the public are not subject to harm as a consequence of unsafe working practices. In England and Wales, responsibility for regulating, managing and supervising health and safety at work is the responsibility of the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) and local authorities. These bodies have extensive powers to ensure that employers fulfil their legal duties to make sure employees can carry out their work in a safe manner, and will carry out investigations to ensure that these duties are being fulfilled. Inspectors can compel individuals to provide information relevant to their investigation, and if they believe an employer is failing to fulfil their legal duties, they have the power to issue enforcement notices against individuals and businesses. If you are subject to an HSE or local authority investigation, the regulatory and compliance solicitors at Wilford Smith can advise you throughout, as well as provide legal guidance on the justification of enforcement notices, and conduct appeals against these on your behalf. Getting legal advice at an early stage in proceedings can play a key role in determining whether an investigation proceeds to the prosecution stage, and will give you the opportunity to conduct a robust defence should you later find yourself engaged in court proceedings.
The professional misconduct solicitors at Wilford Smith have extensive experience of acting on behalf of clients who find themselves subject to disciplinary investigations and proceedings by a wide range of regulatory bodies. We specialise in representing individuals in cases involving the General Medical Council (GMC), the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC), the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA), and in Police Misconduct Hearings amongst many others. There are wide-ranging sanctions available to the UK’s professional regulators, from financial penalties to temporary or permanent suspension from practice. Beyond this, the reputational damage that can arise from such an investigation can cause irreparable damage to an individual’s career. If you find yourself subject to such accusations, it is essential that you equip yourself with the best legal advice available. The solicitors at Wilford Smith are committed to providing our clients with the strongest possible defence, whatever the nature of an investigation.
Why choose Wilford Smith?
Wilford Smith’s high-calibre regulatory law team are committed to providing high quality advice and representation, and will fiercely protect our clients against the negative impact of investigations. We are experts in advising on allegations of regulatory breaches of all kinds, providing sophisticated and astute legal expertise in order to conduct a robust defence in relation to any accusations against you. For those subject to financial investigations, we can provide representation when attending interviews under caution or interviews under compulsion. Our solicitors can help prevent any reputational damage from regulatory investigations or prosecutions, and assist companies who choose to make voluntary disclosures to regulatory bodies, referred to as self-reporting.
Contact our Regulatory and Compliance Lawyers, UK
Our regulatory and compliance teams are based in Sheffield, Rotherham and London and assist businesses and individuals throughout England and Wales. Contact us today on 01709 828044 to find out how we can help.