FCA Enforcement Investigations
The FCA has significant powers to prosecute firms and individuals for regulatory breaches. If you've been notified of an FCA investigation, you need expert assistance from an employment solicitor with regulatory experience right away.
Are you expecting an FCA investigation?
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Are you expecting an FCA enforcement investigation?
When the notifies you that an enforcement investigation is about to take place, it's essential that you seek expert legal advice immediately. That's because the FCA wields the authority to subject you to serious penalties and restrictions during an enforcement investigation, including:
- Compelling you to attend and co-operate in investigations meetings where legal representation is permitted
- Applying for injunctions, restitution orders and winding up orders against you
- Suspending you and the firm from undertaking any and all regulated activities
- Bringing criminal prosecutions for financial crimes including fraud, unauthorised business and insider dealing
- Imposing fines, prohibiting you from working in financial services and seeking compensation for your clients
- Power to reach negotiated settlements for which there are discounts to incentivise early settlements
In fact, the FCA has almost unlimited powers during an enforcement investigation. When an investigation is looming, it's essential to have experienced lawyers on your side who have the knowledge and tactical appreciation to help you resolve matters as quickly and satisfactorily as possible.
Am I personally liable under new FCA regulations?
The came into effect in 2016. This has the effect of increasing the personal accountability of senior figures in the financial and insurance industries. Its introduction means that senior managers can now be held personally accountable for any misconduct or irregularities that fall under their areas of responsibility. If you've signed a Statement of Responsibility you can and will be held liable for regulatory breaches or misconduct that occurred on your watch, even if you were not aware of them at the time.
It's also worth noting however, that following new measures from the FCA, including the SMR and whistleblowing protections, employees undergoing an FCA investigation may turn out to have whistleblowing protection rights, under the terms of the Public Interest Disclosure Act 1998. In such cases, you might have legal protection from prosecution, and perhaps even a case for unfair dismissal.
On that subject, one of the hardest aspects of surviving an FCA investigation is the challenge of finding another job in financial services or insurance afterwards. That's why a key part of our service for senior employees caught up in FCA enforcement investigations is to use our knowledge of regulatory issues and processes to help manage any regulatory consequences from the FCA that might prevent you from holding onto your job, or finding another one. We can also help you navigate your way through the regulatory reference and certification process that now follows you throughout your career.
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