Professional Discipline (Dispute Resolution)

Professional Discipline

Our lawyers advise professionals and their organisations facing challenge or investigation by their regulatory or enforcement bodies. Our work spans a broad range of professional disciplines, notably financial services (FCA and PRA), betting and gaming, accountancy, lawyers, insolvency practitioners, pension trustees and firms regulated by HMRC for AML. Whilst we have deep seated experience in front of the regulators responsible for these professions, we have similar experience in front of quasi professional discipline regulators, such as the Takeover Panel.

Knowing the black letter law is only one part of the job. The real value comes from tactical nous and a sensitivity to what will play best with a regulatory body or tribunal. This comes from our many years of acting for those facing regulatory challenge, as well as from our experience of having worked for some of the regulators themselves, including the Financial Reporting Council. Our sensitivity to the issues includes a keen insight into how best to protect individuals.

Our lawyers can assist at all stages of proceedings, from initial enquiries and responses to requests for information, through to responding to formal allegations and representation in disciplinary hearings and appeals.

On occasion, professional discipline matters can also give rise to employment issues, criminal investigations and High Court litigation. Where that happens, we work closely with the relevant specialist within the firm.

We live in an environment where professionals are increasingly being held accountable for failings. And the accountancy profession is no exception. When mistakes are made or, worse, where deliberate breaches are committed, formal action can follow. Increasingly, that action takes the form of regulatory action by professional bodies. Our very experienced accountancy enforcement team are particularly attuned to how matters can play out in front of regulators, and understand the issues in play both for individuals and firms.

Our team of specialists represent organisations in all sectors regulated for anti-money laundering, including financial institutions, betting and gaming, professional services and HMRC supervised businesses such as art dealers and estate agents. Our well-regarded team consists of regulatory, criminal and compliance experts including former FCA and professional body regulators, as well as CPS prosecutors. We are at the forefront of developments in this fast evolving area including sitting on the committee of the Law Society's Money Laundering Task Force. 

The Gambling Commission's enforcement arm has become increasingly active in recent years, with operating licence reviews and PML reviews becoming more and more prevalent.  Our dedicated Betting & Gaming team is a recognised industry leader. When it comes to representing licensees in enforcement matters, we believe our offering is second to none. Betting & Gaming regulatory and enforcement lawyers (including AML specialists) work closely together to harness decades of expertise of dealing with a wide range of regulators to ensure that your position is best protected. We have been involved in many Gambling Commission enforcement matters in recent years, and are sensitive to how matters play out in practice, allowing us to help formulate the appropriate strategic approach for your case.

We have a wide ranging practice. At one end of the spectrum, we have defended against some of the biggest and most well known financial services investigations and enforcement actions over very many years.  At the other, we act for example for individual traders on a desk, or individual IFAs, either facing misconduct allegations or worried that they may do so.  Whichever end of the spectrum it is, we bring our deep seated expertise to bear, together with our knowledge of the regulators and the way that matters are likely to play out in practice. Our team includes former regulators, and we have been widely recognised as leaders in in the legal directories over many years.

Solicitors and law firms face a regulatory landscape that has evolved significantly in recent years. Specialist advice is often required in connection with a whole range of issues arising, in which we are expert.  We combine our decades of experience in providing expert advice to solicitors and firms with our reputation for bold strategic thinking. We understand that the nature of these matters is that they are invariably sensitive and we are committed to treating them with the careful handling required.

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