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White Collar Criminal Defense Corporations
Similar to individuals, corporations that fail to follow laws and regulations can face White Collar criminal charges. With this in mind the following is information on White Collar criminal charges for corporations, including common penalties and how common criminal charges against corporations are investigated.
If your corporation is facing a criminal offense or you would like to discuss a specific case, call today and schedule a free consultation with a Maryland Federal Criminal Lawyer.
Can Corporations be Charged With Any Kind of White Collar Offense?
Corporations are often charged with White Collar criminal offenses, particularly when they face allegations of failing to comply with the rules and regulations that are associated with various filings and disclosures they are supposed to report to their shareholders or to the government.
There are some individuals that the investigating body or the government can hold responsible for actually committing the criminal offense. Usually corporations that are charged will find themselves facing significant fines and penalties as opposed to actual incarcerations as a result of some kind of White Collar Criminal offense.
There are individual bodies within the organizations that can be held responsible for some offenses that take place. Those people can be held liable personally as well. But generally, when corporations are charged in White Collar Criminal offense, the penalties are likely fines or suspension of practice.
How Does the Government Decide Who to Charge in these Situations?
The government decides on the charges depending on who they will be prosecuting the case against. If somebody is individually responsible for the criminal act, then the government will likely prosecute them.
What Penalties Can a Corporation Face for a White Collar Criminal Offense?
Generally, the penalties that corporations face are huge fines. However, depending on what kind of criminal offenses are alleged, other possibilities include:
- Loss of licenses
- Loss of ability to trade on particular markets or participate in particular activities
- Suspension or complete loss of license depending on what has been negotiated with the investigating bodies
- Or what the judge views as appropriate based on the level of criminal offense.
What Steps Can a Corporation Take When Facing an Investigation for a Federal Offense?
It is important for a corporation to remember not to submit or turn over documents that are being sought from them immediately. Instead, reach out to an attorney and make sure they have an opportunity to go through all of the documents to determine what is required to be turned over and what is not depending on the stage of the investigation.
Often, the documents or whatever information the investigating bodies are seeking can be misleading unless it is put into context. So turning those documents over allows them to build a case against you. The context of the information is most important and helps determine what the appropriate observation is or what actually took place.
Is It Common For the Government to Charge Corporations With White Collar Offenses?
It depends on what is being alleged, who is alleged to have done it, and whether the government believes that a corporation or an individual should be held liable. I will say that when a corporation is being charged they are usually charged along with another individual. So it could be a CEO of a company or some other individual that was responsible for making sure that a criminal activity didn’t occur or certain compliance rules are met. Generally, it is more than one individual who is charged along with a corporation.
What is Different about Defending a Corporation in Federal Court as Opposed to an Individual?
The consequences are different. Corporations have concerns about financial hits that they might take, how their business might be impacted if they lose licenses or customers, and the kind of public relations nightmares that these investigations can sometimes have.
Individuals have different interests. Individuals are usually concerned about their time, the fines that they can face, or the cost of restitution. So when an individual is charged, I feel like there is more concern about their livelihood and wellbeing of their family. When a corporation is charged it is more of a concern for whether the business should be able to proceed with its normal operations, how the employees might be impacted, and things like that. So it is just a matter of the interest of each party which would be different.