<![CDATA[Morvillo Abramowitz Grand Iason & Anello PC]]> http://www.maglaw.com/misc/feed.xml en-us <![CDATA[When Is An Internal Investigation Not Privileged?]]> http://www.maglaw.com/publications/blog-posts/when-is-an-internal-investigation-not-privileged http://www.maglaw.com/publications/blog-posts/when-is-an-internal-investigation-not-privileged Compliance programs have grown in importance along with the demands of new laws and regulations.  These programs are increasingly seen as vital to preventing corporate misconduct or, at least, mitigating sanctions if misconduct is found.

At the same time, company management needs to think through the scope of work assigned to compliance personnel, especially when questionable conduct is detected.  Under these circumstances, an important question should be addressed:  who should look into the misconduct – compliance staff or in-house or external legal counsel? [...]

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<![CDATA[A Lawyer's Privacy Interest – Real or Illusory?]]> http://www.maglaw.com/publications/articles/00367 http://www.maglaw.com/publications/articles/00367 New York attorneys have long relied on the New York Court of Appeals decision in Sage Realty Corp. v. Proskauer Rose Goetz & Mendelsohn LLP to protect a category of documents within their files as to which the attorney, rather than the client, has a privacy interest and to which the client does not have a right of access. This article discusses Judge Gardephe’s recent decision in Gruss v. Zwirn highlighting the narrow scope of this privacy interest.

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<![CDATA[Punishment Without Cause: Disgorgement And Forfeiture Of Salary And Pensions]]> http://www.maglaw.com/publications/blog-posts/punishment-without-cause-disgorgement-and-forfeiture-of-salary-and-pensions http://www.maglaw.com/publications/blog-posts/punishment-without-cause-disgorgement-and-forfeiture-of-salary-and-pensions It has become popular among prosecutors and regulators in recent years to claim that officials who engaged in wrongdoing on the job should be forced to surrender every dollar earned on that job.  The U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York has issued a policy statement that his office will use federal forfeiture laws to seek to strip the pensions of state officials convicted on federal corruption charges.  Such policy mirrors the position often taken by SEC enforcement lawyers in seeking to disgorge all of the salary and bonuses earned by corporate officials found to have engaged in misdeeds.  The problem with these claims, both as a matter of law and as a matter of fairness, is that they most often fail the basic test of causation. [...]

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<![CDATA[Conscious Avoidance: An Over-Used Doctrine]]> http://www.maglaw.com/publications/articles/00365 http://www.maglaw.com/publications/articles/00365 This article, “Conscious Avoidance: An Over-Used Doctrine,” discusses the problems engendered by court interpretations of the evidentiary foundation required for a conscious avoidance jury instruction in criminal cases.

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<![CDATA[Barbara Moses in <i>NYLJ</i> on Pro Bono Disclosure]]> http://www.maglaw.com/news/media-mentions/00079 http://www.maglaw.com/news/media-mentions/00079 A recent New York Law Journal article, “Mandatory Pro Bono Weighed as Disclosure Rule is Criticized,” quoted Morvillo Abramowitz counsel and NYCLA President Barbara Moses regarding continuing talks over mandatory pro bono actions and reporting from New York attorneys.

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<![CDATA[New York City Bar Association's Ethics in Litigation CLE Program]]> http://www.maglaw.com/events/speaking-engagements/00086 http://www.maglaw.com/events/speaking-engagements/00086 <![CDATA[Congress Weighs In On Offshore Enforcement]]> http://www.maglaw.com/publications/articles/00364 http://www.maglaw.com/publications/articles/00364 A recent report by the U.S. Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations (PSI) criticized both the Department of Justice and the Internal Revenue Service for their purported "lax enforcement" of the use of offshore bank accounts to evade U.S. tax laws. The report and subsequent hearings, however, ignore significant progress in the pursuit of offshore tax evasion through both the IRS's Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Programs and the DOJ's Program for Non-Prosecution Agreements or Non-Target Letters for Swiss Banks. This article discusses how Congress could contribute to the appropriate enforcement of the tax laws by fully funding both the DOJ and the IRS.

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<![CDATA[Medical Research Fraud And HHS's Office Of Research Integrity: Watching The Watchdog]]> http://www.maglaw.com/publications/blog-posts/medical-research-fraud-and-hhss-office-of-research-integrity-watching-the-watchdog http://www.maglaw.com/publications/blog-posts/medical-research-fraud-and-hhss-office-of-research-integrity-watching-the-watchdog Even for those who carefully follow legal developments in the health care fraud arena, the Department of Health and Human Service’s Office of Research Integrity (“ORI”) is an agency that rarely appears on the radar.  According to its website, ORI “oversees and directs Public Health Service (PHS) research integrity activities,” including the integrity of research projects funded by agencies such as the National Institutes of Health (“NIH”) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.  ORI’s primary functions include such tasks as “monitoring” investigations that research institutions conduct when there are allegations of data falsification, and proposing administrative actions against medical researchers found to have fabricated the results of their studies. [...]

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<![CDATA[Representing Clients In The Age Of Social Media Is Not As Easy As You Think]]> http://www.maglaw.com/publications/blog-posts/representing-clients-in-the-age-of-social-media-is-not-as-easy-as-you-think http://www.maglaw.com/publications/blog-posts/representing-clients-in-the-age-of-social-media-is-not-as-easy-as-you-think The proliferation of social media over the past decade has drastically changed how people communicate.  Without much thought, people publicly post detailed personal information and photographs documenting their whereabouts and moment-to-moment activities.  In the litigation context, the increase in use of social media has created enormous amounts of discovery material.  Most attorneys are well aware that the personal items and pictures posted on people’s social pages are ripe areas to learn about an opposing party, opposing counsel, potential witnesses, jurors and judges.  Law enforcement agencies too -- like the NYPD, which created a social media unit in 2011 -- are mining social media for information concerning past and prospective criminal activity.  Most laws and rules governing how attorneys may advise their clients concerning the handling of their personal information were developed in the pre-Facebook age.  But, the differences between social media and other forms of discoverable material have altered the legality of attorneys’ actions both substantively and ethically in ways that many attorneys would not expect and in ways that conflict with their experience and instincts.  One problematic – and largely unanswered – question is what advice an attorney can legally and ethically give to a client who has posted potentially incriminating or discoverable material on a social media website. [...]

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<![CDATA[Destitute Before Proven Guilty: Supreme Court OKs Asset Seizure In White-Collar Cases That Bars Defendants' Ability To Retain Counsel]]> http://www.maglaw.com/publications/blog-posts/destitute-before-proven-guilty-supreme-court-oks-asset-seizure-in-white-collar-cases-that-bars-defendants-ability-to-retain-counsel http://www.maglaw.com/publications/blog-posts/destitute-before-proven-guilty-supreme-court-oks-asset-seizure-in-white-collar-cases-that-bars-defendants-ability-to-retain-counsel The Supreme Court’s February 25 decision in Kaley v. United States creates a significant hurdle for white-collar defendants seeking to retain qualified counsel to defend against the government’s allegations.  Ruling that defendants cannot, prior to trial, challenge a grand jury’s probable cause determination that allows the government to bar a defendant’s access to assets linked to the alleged crime, the Court’s decision, according to the dissent, allows the government “to initiate a prosecution and then, at its option, disarm its presumptively innocent opponent by depriving him of his counsel of choice – without even an opportunity to be heard.”  In cases such as Kaley, where the government convinced the grand jury to charge on a novel or untested theory, the result poses a particularly difficult challenge for a white-collar defendant. [...]

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