Internal Investigations

Companies, organisations and authorities are regularly confronted with reports on a compliance violation. Such a report may relate to a violation of the law or a criminal offence (e.g. a property offence such as misappropriation, fraud or theft, corruption, cyber offence, money laundering or industrial espionage). Or the report concerns a violation of internal regulations, such as the Code of Conduct or internal written instructions. Reports of compliance violations may also relate to discrimination against employees in the workplace (e.g. sexual harassment or assault, systematic harassment such as mobbing and bullying, or racism). We support you as specialised lawyers in dealing with such indications. To do this:

  • we make an initial assessment regarding the relevance and plausibility of the report
  • we take over, where appropriate, the conduct of the internal investigation, including the organisation and planning of investigative measures, the examination of documents and data, the planning and monitoring of e-forensic measures, the conduct of interviews, the preparation of a final report or presentation (where requested and appropriate) and the proposal of appropriate action measures
  • we conduct – if required – the internal investigation in whole or in part virtually on the basis of our relevant experience
  • we support you in confidence-building internal and external communications
  • we propose optimisation and prevention steps in the follow-up to the investigation

We work:

discreet – as a small unit, we ensure confidential and noiseless investigations

confidential and independent – we are professionally bound to confidentiality; as specialists in compliance and internal investigations, we are independent and free of conflicts of interest.

professional – in order to ensure a successful and smooth investigation, we undertake profound planning; we carry out the investigation with the necessary professionalism and appropriate humanity

focused and solution-oriented – we investigate only what is necessary and propose only measures that are easy to implement and practicable

flexible – we adapt our investigation to the circumstances. For example, investigating a property crime requires a different approach than investigating a report on sexual harassment in the workplace.

Process and structures for organisational-intern internal investigations

Under certain conditions, internal investigations of reported compliance violations can also be carried out by the organisation itself. For this purpose, it is essential to have tested structures and processes in place for efficient processing. In addition, specifically trained employees are needed to ensure professionalism. With our practical experience in setting up and expanding such internal systems:

  • we work with you to identify and analyse the structures and processes that suit your organisation
  • we create or revise the supporting documentation such as organisational handbook, committee regulations, charts on process flows, communication plan, as well as standardised protocol and decision templates
  • we provide practical assistance in implementing the new or adapted processes in your organisational structures
  • we develop training concepts and, if requested, train your staff involved in the investigation process
  • we evaluate your existing system for “best practice”

«A professionally conducted internal investigation has a preventive effect.»