NYC Bar Report on CCO Liability Calls for More Regulatory Guidance, Transparency and Cooperation

In recent years, CCOs of financial industry firms have not only contended with ever-increasing regulation, but also been at risk of being held individually accountable for their firms’ compliance failures. As a result, there are concerns that fear of regulatory investigations and personal liability may have a chilling effect on CCOs and may discourage qualified individuals from accepting those roles. The New York City Bar Association, in conjunction with the American Investment Council; the Association for Corporate Growth; and the Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association, recently issued a report on CCO liability in the financial sector that explores how regulators and compliance professionals can achieve the shared goals of preventing, detecting and remediating compliance failures. This article explores the key takeaways from the report, including its call for more precise regulatory guidance and the development of additional means to increase cooperation and transparency between CCOs and regulators. For discussion of an SEC enforcement action involving CCO liability, see “Absence of Harm No Defense Against Conflicts of Interest: SEC Issues Lifetime Bar From Compliance Work to CCO” (Sep. 13, 2018).

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