Download: A Blueprint for an Automated Compliance Program

GAN Integrity has published the second edition of A Blueprint for an Automated Compliance Program, an ebook that can be downloaded from the GAN website at no charge.

The ebook is a detailed guide to risk management, due diligence, training, policy management, reporting, and more.

The book is designed to help readers:

  • Understand what to ask when designing your processes
  • Comprehend the building blocks of an automated compliance program
  • Grasp how automation streamlines previously time-consuming processes
  • See how automation heightens the strategic value of compliance

Download the ebook.



Former Hertz General Counsel Rebuffs Demand for Clawback

Hertz Global Holdings has filed a lawsuit against its former general counsel and some other former managers after they refused to pay back at least $70 million in incentive compensation for their roles in an accounting scandal five years ago, reports The Global Legal Post.

The company accused the former executives of pressuring employees to use fraudulent accounting techniques to inflate income and earnings, according to a March 25 lawsuit.

Former general counsel Jeffrey Zimmerman has refused to return incentive compensation tied to the erroneous accounting results.

Read the Global Legal Post article.




Join Sally Yates at NACD’s 2019 General Counsel Event

National Association of Corporate DirectorsThe National Association of Corporate Directors will present the 2019 Strategic-Asset GC event, taking place Tuesday, June 11, at the Metropolitan Club in New York City.

The event will feature an expert panel that will include former U.S. deputy attorney general Sally Yates. Participants will learn about revisions being made to the Yates Memo and how those revisions will apply to board members specifically. The discussion will also include information about legal blind spots that general counsel and directors need to be aware of, as well as a poignant discussion around the bigger picture of corporate responsibility and culture.

Learn more and register.



Webinar: #MeToo is Transforming Corporate Governance

Berkeley Law professor Amelia Miazad will analyze how the #MeToo movement has impacted foundational aspects of corporate governance when Berkeley Boosts presents a free webinar on April 23, 2019, at 10 a.m. Pacific time. MCLE credit will be available.

Those aspects to be discussed include board composition, how the board oversees risk, CEO selection and compensation, and M&A deals.

Berkeley Boosts is a monthly series of free webinars (with MCLE credit) and articles for legal practitioners and organizational leaders. Berkeley Boosts content is curated by the Berkeley Center for Law and Business and Berkeley Law Executive Education.

Register for the webinar.

Past Berkeley Boosts webinars have covered a range of topics, including:

The Wild World of Class Actions
March 20, 2019
Presenters: David Singh, Partner and Hannah Jones, Associate at Weil

The Rise of the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS)
February 26, 2019
Presenter: Mario Mancuso, Kirkland & Ellis (formerly Under Secretary of Commerce for Industry and Security)

Blockchain Explained
January 22, 2019
Presenters: Ian Lee, IDEO CoLab, and Nancy Wojtas, Cooley LLP

To access recordings of these presentations, as well as receive notice of upcoming webinars, sign up for the mailing list.



Halliburton’s Top Lawyer Helps Fend Off Billions in Lawsuits

During his five years as Halliburton’s top lawyer, Robb Voyles has won two cases at the U.S. Supreme Court, successfully concluded a nine-figure tax dispute with its former KBR subsidiary and convinced the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission to end its investigation of the company without a fraud finding.

Mark Curriden of the Texas Lawbook, writing for the Houston Chronicle, profiles the chief legal officer, one of the most senior and respected executives at Halliburton and widely recognized as a leader of the legal profession.

Just three weeks ago, Voyles won what may have been his sweetest victory yet — and it involves the first case that brought Voyles to the attention of Halliburton executives, Curriden writes. Chief U.S. District Judge Barbara Lynn of Dallas officially dismissed the final remnants of a nearly two-decade-old securities class-action lawsuit.

Read the Houston Chronicle article.



Webinar: The Role of In-House and External Counsel in Managing Open Source

WebinarFlexera will present a complimentary webinar discussing the role of in-house and external counsel in managing open source software in the business environment.

The event will be Thursday, April 18, 2019, at 9 a.m. PT / 11 a.m. CT / 12 noon ET.

“Having some best practice guidelines that more clearly define your role and help you guide companies through license compliance and risk management only reinforces and bolsters one of your most important responsibilities as a legal advisor,” the company says in its invitation.

Speakers will be Amy Chun, partner in Knobbe Martens, and Marty Mellican, vice president and associate general counsel of Flexera.

Register for the webinar.



Webinar: #ThinkTank – The State of the Legal Industry

High Performance Counsel will kick off its #ThinkTank series with the first quarterly briefing on the state of the legal industry  on April 12, 2019.

Faculty members recruited by the company will share their thoughts on just three questions – each designed to elicit actionable intelligence to equip the modern legal professional navigating the marketplace.

“We’ve created #ThinkTank to be a critical sounding board for those looking ahead – and looking to get ahead – in the modern legal industry,” the company says on its website. “Our annual #ThinkTank membership program provides exclusive access to #hipcounsel events, including our State of the Legal Industry Quarterly Briefings and Members Only published insights.”

Register for #ThinkTank.



After Years of Apologies for Customer Abuses, Wells Fargo CEO Suddenly Quits; GC Takes Over

Wells Fargo general counsel C. Allen Parker will take over as interim president and chief executive of the company after the abrupt departure of chief executive Tim Sloan on Thursday.

Sloan had spent more than two years trying without success to convince lawmakers and regulators that the embattled bank is no longer a threat to its customers, according to Renae Merle of The Washington Post.

“Sloan spent more than two years on an countrywide apology tour after Wells Fargo acknowledged a pattern of consumer abuses — from opening millions of fraudulent accounts on behalf of its customers without their consent to mistakenly foreclosing on hundreds of clients and repossessing the cars of thousands of others. Sloan’s pleas often failed to win over frustrated lawmakers,” Merle writes.

Read the Post article.



Webinar: Is Your Whistleblower Program Effective?

NAVEX Global will present a complimentary webinar title “Employee Hotlines: What Is Your Data Telling You?” on Thursday, April 4, at 10 a.m. Pacific time/1 p.m. Eastern time.

Studies show that effective internal whistleblower programs contribute to business success, including lower levels of litigation. Yet, external reports to the SEC are on the rise, with many employees failing to use internal reporting systems due to fear of retaliation.

The webinar will allow participants to compare how their hotline programs measures up against benchmarks from more than one million anonymized reports from industry leader NAVEX Global.

Register for the webinar.



Event: Digital Transformation in Corporate Legal Departments

Computer technologyMorae Global and SimpleLegal will present a breakfast and a panel discussion offering a practical look at digital transformation in corporate legal departments.

The complimentary event will be Wednesday, April 3, 2019, 7:30-9 a.m. CDT, Wells Fargo Plaza, 1000 Louisiana Street, Ground Floor Auditorium, Houston, TX 77002.

Digital transformation has become a rallying cry for business and technology strategists, the sponsors said in a release. Unfortunately, only 19 percent of in-house legal teams are well positioned to support enterprise digital efforts (Gartner). This presents a great opportunity for legal departments to use new technologies to reduce operating costs, increase productivity, and deliver enhanced new services to their company and adhere to regulatory and compliance obligations.

The event will cover:

  • The Way We Work – Rethinking workflows and ensuring that the right people are doing the right work.
  • Transformative Use of Technology – Considering how to leverage digital technologies in transforming work, collaboration and business facilitation.
  • Use of Data Analytics – How businesses can identify previously unknown correlations among data to better predict outcomes, optimize delivery, mitigate risk, and tailor solutions to consumer demands and expectations.
  • Change Management and Adoption – Best practices on leveraging change management to assist in the successful digital transformation of the legal department.

The panel will consist of Russ Dempsey (AGC at AIG), Ben Chrisman (AGC at Gridliance) and Ryan Murphy (Director of Legal Operations at LyondellBasell).

Register for the event.



Above the Law’s Outside Counsel Rankings: GCs Reveal Their Go-To Firms

Above the Law has published the results of its 2019 Outside Counsel Rankings, based on surveys of in-house counsel at top companies.

Approximately 1,000 in-house lawyers — from nearly 500 companies and more than 40 cities — responded with evaluations of their outside law firms. The survey asked two questions: 1.) “Which law firms does your company engage for legal services?” and 2.) “Please indicate the highest level legal work for which your company will engage the particular firm(s).”

Responses led to the rankings, in which 50 firms were grouped in two tiers.

See Above the Law’s rankings.



Economic Value Added: The Good, the Bad, and the Complex

National Association of Corporate DirectorsThe National Association of Corporate Directors will present a complimentary webinar on economic value added on Thursday, March 21, 2019, at 2 p.m. Eastern time.

While EVA (or Economic Value Added) is not new, it has been one of the more obscure financial performance metrics for incentive compensation, the NACD says on its website. However, thanks to ISS, it is now center stage. Beginning this year, EVA will be included for “informational purposes” in some ISS research reports. Further, ISS has indicated that they may include EVA in the Financial Performance Assessment (FPA) screens in the future.

What do you need to know about this enigmatic performance metric and how does it apply to compensation plans with a pay-for-performance orientation? This webinar will provide a starting point for understanding EVA and how to evaluate its relevance to your industry, company, and incentive programs.

Register for the webinar.



Court Agrees General Counsel Was Fired for Whistle-Blowing; Upholds $8 Million Verdict

A federal appeals court upheld about $8 million in damages Tuesday to the former general counsel of a Bay Area laboratory who was fired after telling company officials about possible bribery and records falsification by the lab’s employees in China, according to the San Francisco Chronicle.

Bio-Rad Laboratories fired general counsel Sanford Wadler in 2013, claiming poor performance. The company also claimed it found no evidence of wrongdoing by its employees.

The Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on Tuesday found evidence to support the 2017 verdict by a federal court jury in San Francisco that Wadler had acted as a whistle-blower and was dismissed in retaliation for reporting conduct that he “reasonably believed” to be illegal, according to the Chronicle‘s Bob Egelko.

Read the SF Chronicle article.



Download: Contract Management Software Selection Guide

ContractWorks has published “The Contract Management Software Selection Guide” and made it available for downloading at no charge.

“As corporate counsel, it’s important that you understand the capabilities – and limitations – of contract management software,” the company says on its website. “This guide will help you determine if you need a solution and, if so, which option makes the most sense.”

The new guide discusses:

  • If it’s time to upgrade your contract management system
  • Which features you actually need to manage your contracts
  • What to take into consideration before making a decision
  • How to select contract management software
  • How to choose the best solution for your company

Download the guide.




Tesla’s General Counsel Lasts Only Two Months

CNN reports that Tesla’s general counsel is leaving the company after just two months on the job — the latest in a series of executive departures at Elon Musk’s electric car company.

The company quickly announced a replacement for Dane Butswinkas, who joined Tesla in December. He will return to his legal practice at Williams & Connolly in Washington. His replacement is Jonathan Chang, who previously served as Tesla’s vice president of legal. Chang has worked at Tesla for almost eight years.

Bloomberg is reporting that Butswinkas was hired in the wake of Musk’s run-in with U.S. securities regulators. Hours before announcement of the GC’s departure, the chief executive officer was sending tweets reminiscent of those that put him and the company in legal jeopardy last year, according to the Bloomberg report.

Read the CNN article.



Download: The Changing Face of In-House Legal Departments

Zapproved has published a new guide titled “The Changing Face of Legal: Preparing Your In-House Team for Tomorrow,” which includes key distillations from a PREX18 session, on how to reinvent an in-house legal team.

The guide can be downloaded from Zapproved’s website at no charge.

Corporate legal departments are under fire, the company says on its website. From expanding data volumes and data types to increased budget pressures and new data privacy regulations — not to mention unchecked data security risks — in-house legal teams find themselves needing to adapt to unprecedented demands.

The guide includes advice from Jen Warner, Vice President of Legal and Deputy General Counsel for Columbia Sportswear, and Brian Corbin, Executive Director, Assistant General Counsel at JPMorgan Chase.

Download the guide.



Download: Top 10 Compliance Trends eBook

NAVEX Global has published a new eBook titled “Top 10 Ethics & Compliance Trends for 2019.” The book is available for download at no charge from the company’s website.

“Transparency and trust define our industry’s challenges and opportunities for 2019,” the company says on its website. “With each expert opinion found in this year’s annual trends report, you’ll see how shifts in the workplace and regulatory environment bring to light the importance of authenticity and ethical practices.”

Some of the topics covered are:

  • Protected Activity & Corporate Governance
  • Third-Party Risk Beyond FCPA
  • Artificial Intelligence
  • New Global Business Practices
  • GDPR Enforcement Updates

Download the eBook.



One of Apple’s Former Top Lawyers Faces Criminal Charges for Insider Trading

Gene Levoff — who was senior director of corporate law and corporate secretary until September 2018 — has been charged by the SEC with trading “on material nonpublic information about Apple’s earnings three times during 2015 and 2016,” according to the lawsuit filed in the U.S. District Court of New Jersey, reports Forbes.

Forbes contributor Peter Cohan writes that the 44-year-old Levoff worked at Apple from 2008 until he was terminated in September 2018. At the time of his termination, he reported directly to the general counsel.

Fortune reports that the SEC alleged Levoff traded on advance knowledge of revenue-and-earnings figures multiple times dating back to 2011, with the illegal investments leading to about $227,000 in profits while allowing him to avoid $377,000 in losses.

Read the Fortune article.

Read the Forbes article.



Download: How the GC Helps Build a Better Board

National Association of Corporate DirectorsThe National Association of Corporate Directors has published an article discussing new perspectives on how a board of directors can expand the role of the general counsel and benefit from the expertise and solutions the GC can bring to the various functions of corporate governance.

The article can be downloaded from the NACD website at no charge.

The publication explains how a more participatory approach with the general counsel not only strengthens company leadership, but also reduces overall enterprise risk.

The article features an interview with ManpowerGroup director Cari Dominguez and ManpowerGroup’s senior vice president and chief legal officer Richard Buchband. It rovides insight into the various ways a board and the GC can enhance each other.

Download the article.




Case Study: TIAA – A Legal Transformation With Technology, Process and People

Onit has published a case study showing how TIAA embarked on a journey that leverages best-in-class technologies, onshore and offshore partners, and innovation to bring together an efficient resource mix that enables the highest and best use of each law professional’s time.

The case study can be downloaded at no charge.

As TIAA law department’s chief operating officer and chief of staff for the past two years, Brad Rogers was tasked with transforming the entire legal operations function by bringing together law department employees and vendor partners from across the world to streamline processes and implement a comprehensive technology platform with capabilities rooted in process, workflow and collaboration that would allow the best use of each law professional’s time.

Download the case study.