Staton Family Investments v. Merrill Lynch (FINRA ARB) – secured $8.1 million award

Read more on the matter of the arbitration between the Stanton Family Investments, Ltd. Daniel C. Staton v. Merrill Lynch with judgement made on July 21, 2011 :


Martin P. Russo Interviewed by MarketWatch

U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York Preet Bharara is petitioning for the rehearing on insider-trading decision with the U.S. District Court of Appeals.  Instead of a three person panel, he wants the case to be heard before all judges on a court.  He is not likely to obtain an en banc review.  Read more at:


SEC renewed its focus on financial-reporting and disclosure issues in 2014

The number of securities class-action lawsuits alleging accounting fraud jumped 47% in 2014, even as the overall number of securities class actions was little changed, according to a new report from Cornerstone Research issued Tuesday.

The increase stems partly from a similar jump in accounting-fraud enforcement cases brought by the Securities and Exchange Commission as it renewed its focus on financial-reporting and disclosure issues in 2014 after several years of focusing on other matters.

The numbers show 69 new securities cases with accounting allegations filed in 2014, up from 47 in 2013. There were 170 total new securities class action filings in 2014, up only slightly from 166 the previous year.

The jump in accounting lawsuits mirrors a 46% increase in SEC accounting-fraud enforcement actions in the fiscal year that ended last Sept. 30, the first year-over-year increase in SEC accounting cases since 2007. The agency has said publicly over the past year or two that it’s paying more attention to accounting fraud, after several years of concentrating on misconduct related to the financial crisis.

Accounting lawsuit filings involving restatements of financial statements hit a seven–year high, at 42% of accounting cases. Cornerstone noted that the severity of stock-price drops surrounding restatements also increased in 2014, potentially encouraging investors to file such cases.

Of the securities class-action settlements reached during the year, 70% were in cases involving accounting allegations, according to the report, the highest level since 2010.

Attorneys and Compliance

The law exists to keep everything organized, systematic and integrated.  The government has assumed the duty to ensure that no one suffers unfair and unjust treatment at the hands of any medical practitioner, provider or drug manufacturer or importer.  Towards this, there are numerous rules, regulations and common law issues imposed as well as many compliance requirements that have been put in place by the government.  These are intended to ensure that there are no unjust or unfair practices carried on by anyone.

Compliance is about following a particular set of rules such as a standard, a policy or a set of regulations and laws.  There is always a need for strict compliance norms so as to avoid corporate scandals and breakdowns. Usually adherence to these compliance norms and procedure requirements, with the help of a compliance attorney, is necessary and if not followed, will have the potential to attract civil, administrative or criminal penalties.  It has been time and again decided in the courts of law that tight personal responsibility on the part of top management is extremely essential to achieve and maintain harmony in the day to day business administration of a medical practice, hospital or any other healthcare provider.

Whistle blowing is the act of bringing to light any unjust practices or wrongful practices being followed by the powers to be in any entity and who have failed to comply with the set of norms and regulations for that entity.  This is usually achieved by the person intending to file such a claim with the help of a whistle blower lawyer.  Corporations are supposed to work within the legal framework provided by law.  There are compliance officers and sometimes, even in house compliance attorneys appointed to see to it that legal compliance standards are up to date.  However, there are still instances where the corporations or medical practitioners fall short, and then someone files a claim for non-compliance.

When a person has some proof of alleged wrong-doing or non-compliance on the part of a corporation, healthcare provider or practitioner, a suit is filed in a court of law.  A  lawyer sees to the drafting and the filing of the complaint based on what evidence is brought to light.  A compliance lawyer is also extremely useful to entities who want to ensure that they adhere to the compliance norms set out by the authorities.  They manage a gamut of work from drafting and implementing the company policies, reviewing documents and business practices for policy compliance as well as legal compliance. Additionally, they provide compliance training and other information and much more. Compliance functions and compliance norms differ from industry to industry, but there is no denying the fact that the focus on compliance is only increasing day by day.  The attorneys can work individually or with other attorneys in a firm or can work as in house attorneys for entities.

With rules and regulations governing every facet of activity in an entity, its operations become complex. Compliance with all applicable rules and regulations ensures smooth running of the entity.