SEC & Regulatory Enforcement

Latham & Watkins defends clients in investigations and actions brought by the SEC, PCAOB, FINRA, CFTC, state attorneys general and other regulators around the globe.

Why Latham

Deep Experience With Financial Regulators and Prosecutors

Latham represents clients from the initial inquiry stage through formal investigations and federal court and administrative enforcement actions and criminal prosecutions. The firm has a rich history and deep experience with the SEC and other financial regulators; at various times Latham partners have served at the highest levels of the SEC, as Chairman, General Counsel and Director of the Division of Corporation Finance. Current partners include two former Associate Directors at the Division of Enforcement and a former Deputy General Counsel. The group includes a number of highly experienced former federal prosecutors with extensive trial experience in securities law prosecutions, including the former Assistant Attorney General in charge of the Criminal Division of the US Department of Justice (DOJ), the former acting United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York, the former Chief of the Securities and Commodities Fraud Unit in the Southern District of New York and the former Chief of the Enron Task Force.

From long experience and with a practical knowledge of government and regulatory policy, decision making, enforcement practices and personnel, Latham lawyers have the judgment and insight necessary to develop  a strategy for the specific needs of each matter and each client. While that strategy often succeeds in avoiding charges altogether, Latham has an enviable record of winning against the government and regulators at the pretrial and trial stages.

Latham’s experience covers the entire range of securities enforcement issues, including such current priorities as:

  • The Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA)
  • Insider trading
  • Financial fraud
  • Auditor and lawyer liability, including Rule 102(e) proceedings
  • Asset valuation
  • Pricing and disclosures in mortgage-related matters
  • Money laundering

Clients include public companies, financial institutions, boards of directors and board committees, accounting firms and law firms, as well as individual directors, officers, partners and employees.

Sophisticated Counsel With a Global Vision

Latham lawyers understand that any government investigation can be a sensitive matter potentially involving parallel civil and criminal proceedings and raising a range of disclosure, public relations, and other business, professional, and personal concerns. Latham lawyers have the experience necessary to provide strategic analysis and advice on all related areas such as congressional testimony, insurance coverage, competitive and customer issues, government licensing or debarment proceedings and other collateral effects of charges or resolution. These capabilities are increasingly important in the present enforcement climate and are enhanced by the group’s government-facing and trial experience.

Awards & Rankings

  • New York Partner Christopher Clark Named Crisis Leadership Trailblazer - September 01, 2021
  • Six Washington, D.C. Partners Recognized as Top Lawyers - December 15, 2020
  • Leslie Caldwell Named Top White Collar Lawyer in California - December 10, 2020
  • Two White Collar Partners Named to Enforcement 40 List - November 04, 2020
  • Latham Recognized Across the Board for Litigation & Trial Prowess - October 14, 2020

Latham is well-equipped to “service clients based in multiple jurisdictions facing high-profile SEC investigations or enforcement actions,” adding: “They’re excellent at identifying problems and offering solutions.”

Chambers USA 2020

Media Coverage

Crisis Leadership Trailblazer: Christopher ClarkTop White Collar Lawyers in California: Leslie CaldwellFormer White House Deputy Counsel Joins Latham & Watkins


Latham Honored at National Law Journal’s Professional Excellence AwardsLatham & Watkins Advises Riverstone Holdings in Connection with Enviva Partners’ Simplification Transaction and Corporate ConversionNew York Partner Christopher Clark Named Crisis Leadership Trailblazer

Thought Leadership

Changing of the Guard at the SEC Heralds New Day for ESG Disclosure RulesSEC Streamlines Rules for Over-the-Counter Equity SecuritiesWashington Insider Briefing: Critical Insight on Proposed US Law