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As a partner, in the event you find yourself either about to become the subject of an investigation or actually being investigated, you will be keen to understand your legal obligations and entitlements and want to explore your options for responding. We are experts in advising partners in professional service firms facing misconduct allegations and other investigations.

We also advise partners who may be drawn into investigations as witnesses or companions. 

We frequently advise partners who are seeking to initiate an investigation. We appreciate the significance for their position in doing so, and the importance of getting it right. Being supported through this process is key to not just understanding your rights and obligations, but to ensure the investigation is undertaken in a fair and balanced way. 

We understand, as a partner, your obligations under the partnership agreement can prove challenging to navigate, and understanding what protections you might have, whether express or implied, is important.  Our advice will also focus on compliance with any regulatory obligations during this period (as appropriate), protection of reputation, and tactical issues to be considered by partners.

Recent and ongoing partners investigations include:

  • Advising partner accused of breach of the personal relationships at work policy and conduct tending to bring the partnership into disrepute, which included allegations of sexual misconduct as well. In addition to advising on their contribution to the investigation and rights under the partnership deed, we provided regulatory advice and worked closely with criminal lawyers and reputational advisors to protect our client’s position.
  • Advising senior equity partner accused of sexual harassment of a junior colleague in connection with their suspension and counter complaint for serious unlawful discrimination and breach of the partnership deed by the firm in its management of the allegations and decisions taken. 
  • Advising partner making complaints of sexual misconduct and bullying by their partners and systemic third party harassment, making protected disclosures which include fraudulent practices. The matter was complicated by the impact of the conduct on the individual’s mental health and aggravating behaviours of the firm toward her after she had made the complaints.

For more information or to discuss professional service firm investigations, please contact Partner Emma Bartlett, Senior Partner Sarah Chilton or Partner and General Counsel Beth Hale.