Your business being investigated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) could really cost your company, but it doesn’t have to.
Since the financial crash of 2008, the FCA has been recruiting highly experienced prosecutors to investigate a range of financial businesses and organisations. But this vigorous approach to regulation need not mean that your business comes under threat.
You can contact First4Lawyers to access the very best advice and representation from highly respected financial solicitors to defend your firm against any allegations, and to review your processes to safeguard you against future action.
What are FCA investigations?
The Financial Services and Markets Act 2000 (FSMA) gave statutory powers to the FCA as an independent, non-governmental body to investigate regulatory breaches, as well as offences created by the FSMA.
The FCA is carries out investigations into firms alleged to have committed crimes such as insider dealing and market abuse, and companies that breach the FCA’s principles and rules.
Mis-selling is another focus of FCA investigations, and businesses are also being brought before the Regulatory Decisions Committee or Upper Tribunal due to land bank and credit inquiries, applications for controlled status functions, and challenges or removals of controlled status functions.
Other contentious areas include perimeter offences, in which regulated activities have been carried out without the necessary authorisation or approval.
How can an FCA investigation affect my business?
It is possible that the FCA will suspend you or your firm from undertaking regulated activities during an investigation, and if you are found to have breached FCA rules, or committed market abuse, then you could be subject to a fine.
The FCA can apply to the court for injunctions to be taken out against your firm, and it also has the power to make winding-up and restitution orders.
Should you be found to have been involved in criminal activities such as insider dealing, fraud, market manipulation, or breaching the general prohibition, then the FCA can bring criminal prosecutions against you. These can lead to fines and public censure, and the requirement to pay compensation to your consumers.
I believe my business might be at risk of an FCA investigation – what should I do?
Business crime solicitors from First4Lawyers can provide guidance on how to respond to FCA requests for information, or take action to try and avoid investigation altogether.
If you are required to make representations to the FCA, want to challenge restraint orders, or are involved in a case that will be heard by the Regulatory Decisions Committee or Upper Tribunal, we can help you with the guidance and representation you require.
If you would like advice on any aspect of FCA investigations, or on your strategy and options in avoiding a potential investigation into your firm, contact First4Lawyers to discuss your circumstances.