The role of contract terms in compliance

I’m really looking forward to my upcoming presentation to the annual Compliance and Ethics Institute of the Society of Corporate Compliance and Ethics.

The topic is: “Are Your Corporate Contract Clauses Running Offense and Defense for Your Compliance Program?”

It should be a lot of fun – seriously! Amy Hutchens and I will engage in some lively mock contract negotiations as we explore these bullet points:

  • An effective program must reach beyond the boundaries of your company; do your company’s contract clauses give your program room to operate to its fullest potential?
  • Discover how to play offense and defense with your program using contract clauses – learn about common limitations in contract clauses that could tie your hands if something goes wrong.
  • Hear how agreeing to certain contract clauses can bind your company to complying with another company’s program – and how to negotiate terms that your program can live with.

Among the common contractual issues we will use as examples are: whether to agree to follow another company’s Code of Conduct; and whether a vendor can agree to let its client dictate the terms of its bonuses and the topics in its training program.

Hope to see you there!

Speaker-PDFs_Meyer-Jason

Lawyer sport: nice plea, Bernie

Anybody read all of Bernie Madoff’s allocution when he pled guilty? I pasted it, below.

It sounds like an odd mea culpa. But it’s actually  a neat, precise bit of lawyering. Put aside the lives he shattered, and you can almost enjoy the way his defense team tracks the required elements of the crimes to which he pled guilty — foreclosing any challenge to the judge’s acceptance of the plea — and still closes the door on any broader culpability by Madoff or his cohort.

I like what I saw one compliance guy say – that he’s tired of being asked at parties about Madoff, because it means people are confusing blatant criminal behavior (which criminals will always engage in) with insidious unethical behavior (which may be mitigated).

(Tip for those of us with, um, tired vision — click towards the bottom right corner of the frame below to see the allocution in “full screen” mode.)

[slideshare id=1136984&doc=bernard-statement-allocution31209-090312111816-phpapp01&type=d]