Tips for Responding to an SEC Subpoena

Being forced to participate in an SEC investigation, even as a witness, can be a harrowing experience, and this is true whether you are a market professional, the CEO of a regulated entity, or an investor. That investigation can have a serious effect on your business, or your career and has the risk of consuming a significant amount of time, and money, even if you have engaged in any wrongful conduct. How you respond to the initial inquiry, and how you manage the events as the investigation continues often determines the outcome of that investigation..

SEC investigations can begin from a variety of sources, including anonymous tips, trading surveillance by the SEC, or the exchanges, customer complaints, or from information obtained by other government entities. Witnesses and even targets, often learn of the investigation by a simple telephone call from an investigator or staff attorney. That telephone call will be followed by a letter, which requests that you voluntarily provide information to the SEC Staff.

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