Regulatory & Disciplinary
"Corker Binning is a first class firm. It is large enough to take on the most challenging and document-heavy cases but, by not getting too big, they have preserved the personal touch of a much smaller firm and always have wonderful attention to detail"
Legal 500 UK 2021
Over the past 18 years, Corker Binning has become a market-leading firm in complex criminal and regulatory investigations. In tandem with this expertise, we have acted for regulators and individuals in a number of professional disciplinary investigations and proceedings, particularly where the allegations are derived from, or overlap with, those being investigated by a criminal or regulatory body.
We are aware that professional disciplinary proceedings, particularly those which impugn a person’s professional integrity, can cause irreparable damage to their reputations. The negative publicity associated with an investigation can itself destroy careers. The sanctions available to the UK’s professional regulators are wide-ranging and include financial penalties as well as temporary or permanent suspension from practice.
Achieving the most favourable outcome to a professional disciplinary investigation, and seeking to avoid the most damaging consequences, depends on taking expert legal advice at the earliest opportunity. Depending on the case, we can advise on drafting written representations, how to answer questions in any interview, the impact of the investigation on a person’s employment status and an effective media strategy designed to reduce negative publicity. Where breaches of technical standards are alleged, we can advise on the types of expert evidence that might be needed to rebut the case.
We have developed particular expertise in advising lawyers in proceedings before the Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal (SDT) and regulatory hearings before the Bar Standards Board (BSB), both on allegations of breaches of professional competence and breaches of confidentiality and integrity. On occasion we have been able to negotiate successful settlements to these cases so that our clients have been able to continue with their chosen career.
We have acted for a number of individuals and firms in regulatory proceedings brought by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and Taxation Disciplinary Board (TDB).
Notably, we have also acted for the Financial Reporting Council (FRC), the UK’s independent disciplinary body for accountants and actuaries, on several high-profile cases. We have also acted for accountants who are subject to investigation by the FRC.
Some of our recent work in professional disciplinary and regulatory investigations includes advising:
- Advising the Financial Reporting Council on four investigations into firms of accountants and actuaries, or individual accountants or actuaries, as well as acting for accountants who are subject to investigation by the FRC.
- Acting for an individual in the Regulatory Decisions Committee and the Upper Tribunal (Tax and Chancery Chamber) of the FCA in proceedings alleging breaches of investment restrictions and market manipulation arising from the management of a £35m hedge fund.
- Acting for a tax advisory practice in disciplinary proceedings before the TDB concerning alleged breaches of professional competence.
- Acting for a number of solicitors in proceedings before the SRA who also face parallel criminal investigations or prosecutions for mortgage fraud.