Home / Expertise / Compliance
photograph of safety deposit boxes

Compliance

Germany

CMS Compliance & Forensic Services – qualified and experienced in prevention and crisis management

Compliance is an indispensable part of good corporate governance. A compliance structure that is adapted to a company’s specific requirements not only helps to avoid legal violations, it can also minimise liability risk in a crisis.

The CMS Compliance & Forensic Services team comprises more than 60 compliance experts from every area of commercial law. Our broad-based practice and high degree of specialisation enable us to cover all facets of compliance and identify risks rapidly and efficiently. We can provide the necessary legal support for both prevention and investigation.

Our services range from advising on the establishment and optimisation of compliance programmes through internal investigations for detecting violations of the law to assisting with preliminary proceedings and asserting claims for damages.

Prevention is better than cure: our proactive compliance advice

When establishing and implementing a compliance system designed to meet the exact needs of the individual company, we apply a Prevent – Identify – Respond philosophy.

Our Compliance team offers assistance with:

  • Developing, implementing and optimising compliance programmes
  • Risk management (compliance due diligence, business partner screening, compliance clauses in agreements)
  • Setting up and managing reporting systems (whistleblower hotline, ombudsman)
  • Establishing compliance guidelines and conducting training (e.g. on anti-corruption, competition law, prevention of money laundering, IT security and data protection, capital markets law, product safety, procurement law and export control)

Managing the crisis: our Forensic Services in compliance situations

A crisis can affect a company in many ways – and it usually catches management unawares. A crisis situation limits the company's capacity to act and, in a worst-case scenario, may jeopardise the company's very existence. If the company also comes under pressure from business partners, politicians and the media, quick, efficient and legally robust crisis management is required.

The Forensic Services experts at CMS adopt an integrated approach when dealing with crises. As the largest German commercial law firm, we can provide you with the required number of highly qualified lawyers and tax advisors within a very short period of time to handle major internal investigations. For companies in a compliance crisis, we also bring together specialists from various other disciplines: defence lawyers, e-discovery providers, crisis PR consultants, auditors and private investigators. Their role is typically to help detect and resolve violations as part of an internal investigation.

The crucial advantage for you is that CMS Forensic Services act as a single point of contact with an overview of all the relevant compliance issues, guiding you efficiently through the crisis.

Our Forensic Services comprise:

  • Informing management and the relevant supervisory bodies of their duties in a compliance crisis situation and developing a crisis management plan
  • Planning, managing and conducting internal investigations
  • Establishing the facts of the matter, searching documents and e-mail messages with the aid of forensic tools, interviewing employees
  • Return of assets and tracking of payment flows
  • Developing resolution strategies and identifying immediate steps to be taken
  • Managing defence lawyers, auditors, e-discovery providers, private investigators and crisis PR consultants
  • Advising on cooperation with the investigating authorities
  • Coordination and negotiation of the investigation with the works council
  • Development of amnesty programmes and crown witness arrangementsLegal support before and during an official investigation (dawn raid)
  • Contingency plans for correct conduct during dawn raids
  • Dawn raid training
  • On-site support during the investigation. Our international CMS Dawn Raid Network enables us to provide suitable lawyers worldwide with minimum delay, either from one of our 71 CMS offices or from the offices of our partner firms
  • Representation in subsequent official or court proceedings

What others say about us

"CMS performs ‘outstanding work’ and its practice groups work closely together to deliver a comprehensive approach to advice at the preventative and investigative level."
(The Legal 500 Germany, 2015)

"Wide-ranging advice on organisational structure, also establishment and operation of (international) hotlines and investigations. Broad-based capability, including international trade."
(JUVE Handbook of Commercial Law Firms, 2014/2015)

Deployment of external staff
Read more Read less
May 2019
CMS Com­pli­ance Ba­ro­met­er 2018
Rep­res­ent­at­ive sur­vey with ma­jor Ger­man com­pan­ies

Feed

Show only
May 2019
The Ver­dict
Round-up of cor­por­ate crime de­vel­op­ments across CMS
02 Apr 20
Ger­many pro­tects busi­nesses against in­solv­ency dur­ing pan­dem­ic
The Ger­man gov­ern­ment has moved quickly and de­cis­ively to pro­tect busi­nesses from the short-term im­pact of the Cov­id-19 pan­dem­ic. A new law was passed by par­lia­ment us­ing re­mote vot­ing pro­ced­ures and...
30 Mar 20
Food and hy­giene in the coronavir­us crisis
We out­line the hy­giene meas­ures that Ger­man pro­duc­tion and trade should take and why a state­ment from the Ger­man Fed­er­al In­sti­tute for Risk As­sess­ment in­spires cau­tious con­fid­ence. Food pro­duc­tion and...
10 Mar 20
EU Com­mis­sion's White Pa­per on Ar­ti­fi­cial In­tel­li­gence stresses ex­cel­lence...
Ar­ti­fi­cial in­tel­li­gence (AI) has now reached al­most all areas of life: mo­bil­ity, trade and health, to name but a few. As a res­ult, the EU Com­mis­sion has sum­mar­ised its vis­ion for the fu­ture of AI and...
25 Feb 20
Pro­tect your con­sumers or pay the price: mega fines for breaches of...
Novem­ber 2019 saw the ad­op­tion of the En­force­ment and Mod­ern­isa­tion Dir­ect­ive which amends four ex­ist­ing con­sumer-fa­cing European dir­ect­ives: the Un­fair Com­mer­cial Prac­tices Dir­ect­ive, the Con­sumer Rights...
17 Feb 20
Opin­ion on stand­ard con­trac­tu­al clauses: more a com­pli­ance head­ache...
A re­cent non-bind­ing Opin­ion of the Ad­voc­ate Gen­er­al has sig­nalled that the stand­ard con­trac­tu­al clauses can con­tin­ue to be used as a safe­guard for trans­fer­ring per­son­al data out­side the EEA. However,...
30 Jan 20
New European rules for on­line plat­forms
A new Reg­u­la­tion, known as the Plat­form to Busi­ness Reg­u­la­tion or the On­line In­ter­me­di­ation Ser­vices Reg­u­la­tion, will come in­to force on 12 Ju­ly 2020. It ap­plies to on­line in­ter­me­di­ation ser­vice pro­viders,...
17 Jan 20
New guid­ance on cy­ber­se­cur­ity for med­ic­al devices pub­lished
In Decem­ber 2019, the Med­ic­al Device Co­ordin­a­tion Group (“MD­CG”) is­sued a new guid­ance to help med­ic­al device man­u­fac­tur­ers meet the cy­ber­se­cur­ity re­quire­ments in the Med­ic­al Devices Reg­u­la­tion (“MDR”)...
20 Dec 19
Düs­sel­dorf High­er Re­gion­al Court al­lows dis­cus­sion of re­tail pri­cing...
Are man­u­fac­tur­ers al­lowed to talk to their deal­ers about the price po­s­i­tion­ing of their products dur­ing on­go­ing con­trac­tu­al re­la­tion­ships? When would such a prac­tice draw the risk of an­ti­trust sanc­tions?...
02 Dec 19
Ger­man busi­ness awaits in­tern­al-in­vest­ig­a­tion pro­to­cols in face of...
With law­makers in Ber­lin ex­pec­ted to pass the Cor­por­ate Sanc­tions Law with­in the com­ing year, Ger­man busi­nesses are ex­pec­ted to ad­opt com­pre­hens­ive pro­to­cols for in­tern­al in­vest­ig­a­tions in or­der to com­ply...
15 Nov 19
Brexit and data pro­tec­tion: what to do next (when you don’t know what’s...
Whilst the threat of a no-deal Brexit has been aver­ted for now, the fu­ture is by no means cer­tain. We have high­lighted some of the key is­sues for UK-based or­gan­isa­tions, and the EEA or­gan­isa­tions that...
05 Nov 19
Whis­tleblow­ing Dir­ect­ive ad­op­ted by the EU Coun­cil
On 7 Oc­to­ber 2019, the EU Coun­cil ap­proved the word­ing of the "Dir­ect­ive of the European Par­lia­ment and of the Coun­cil on the pro­tec­tion of per­sons who re­port breaches of Uni­on law", also known as the...