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Category Archives: Ethics & Compliance

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After Fraudulent Activity in SAM, GSA Implements New Registration Requirements

Posted in Ethics & Compliance
The General Services Administration’s (GSA) System for Award Management (SAM) announced its role in an ongoing Inspector General Investigation into alleged, third party fraudulent activity in SAM. GSA suspects that the alleged fraudulent activity impacted only a limited number of entities.  GSA has since notified the affected entities, and deactivated their SAM registrations.  GSA also… Continue Reading

NDAA Lobbying Restrictions – Not As Onerous As Many Seem to Fear

Posted in Ethics & Compliance
There is a substantial amount of confusion and concern about Section 1045 of the 2018 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), entitled “Prohibition on lobbying activities with respect to the Department of Defense by certain officers of the Armed Forces and civilian employees of the Department following separation from military service or employment with the Department.” … Continue Reading

DOJ Issues New Guidance on the Evaluation of Corporate Compliance Programs

Posted in Ethics & Compliance
On February 8, 2017, the Department of Justice Fraud Section posted a new guidance document on its website entitled, “Evaluation of Corporate Compliance Programs”  (“Compliance Guidance”).  This Compliance Guidance, comprised of a number of topics and questions, comes a little over a year after the Fraud Section hired Hui Chen as its resident compliance expert. … Continue Reading

Trump’s Ethics Executive Order More Concerned with Post-Government Employment Activities

Posted in Ethics & Compliance
On Saturday, January 28, President Trump issued an Executive Order setting forth the ethics regulations governing current and future executive agency appointments, which is both more restrictive and less restrictive than the 2009 Obama Executive Order addressing the same issue.  Specifically, and with respect to the former, President Trump’s order bans all executive agency appointees… Continue Reading

OGE Finalizes Rule Regarding Solicitation and Acceptance of Gifts for Executive Branch Employees

Posted in Ethics & Compliance
On November 18, 2016, the Office of Government Ethics (OGE) issued a final rule revising the Standards of Ethical Conduct for Employees of the Executive Branch (“Standards”)  applicable to the solicitation and acceptance of gifts from outside sources. See 5 CFR § 2635. The final rule imposes a duty to decline otherwise permissible gifts when… Continue Reading

OGE Amends Executive Branch Ethics Program

Posted in Ethics & Compliance
On November 2, 2016, the Office of Government Ethics (OGE) issued a final rule amending the regulations that set forth the elements and procedures of the executive branch ethics program by defining and describing the executive branch ethics program, delineating the responsibilities of various stakeholders, and enumerating key executive branch ethics procedures.  The final rule… Continue Reading

“Fair Pay and Safe Workplaces” Rules Head to White House for Final Review

Posted in Ethics & Compliance, Labor & Employment
On May 4, 2016, the FAR Council’s draft final rules and the Department of Labor’s draft final guidance implementing the “Fair Pay and Safe Workplaces” Executive Order arrived at the White House’s Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA) for review, setting in motion the final steps prior to the issuance of burdensome new compliance… Continue Reading

Rethinking Government Contracts Crisis Management: Identifying Risk Before a Crisis Begins

Posted in Ethics & Compliance
There are always clues. After-action reviews nearly always identify signals that a crisis was about to begin. Small hints, tips, strange comments, or different attitudes from a customer. Something will be there. But these clues can be difficult to spot in the moment by busy in-house counsel or senior executives on the front lines of… Continue Reading

New FAR Requirement Forces Contractors to Examine Confidentiality Agreements

Posted in Ethics & Compliance
On March 22, the comment period is set to close on a new rule proposed by the FAR Council titled, “Federal Acquisition Regulation: Contractor Employee Internal Confidentiality Agreements.” This rule will prohibit federal dollars from going to companies that require employees or subcontractors to sign restrictive confidentiality agreements that could limit the ability of employees… Continue Reading

OGE Issues Proposed Rule Regarding Gifts for Executive Branch Employees

Posted in Ethics & Compliance
On November 27, 2015, the Office of Government Ethics (“OGE”) issued a proposed rule that would revise the portions of the Standards of Ethical Conduct for Executive Branch Employees that govern the solicitation and acceptance of gifts from outside sources (“Standards”). See 5 CFR § 2635. Although it is a proposed rule (with the comment… Continue Reading

Hiring a Former Government Official? Obtain and Hold On to the Ethics Letter

Posted in Ethics & Compliance
The Department of Defense (DoD) Office of Inspector General (IG) recently released a July 6, 2015 Memorandum announcing that it will “immediately” begin the field work for its assessment of DoD compliance with Section 847 of the 2008 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), “Requirements for Senior Defense Officials Seeking Employment with Defense Contractors.” Section 847… Continue Reading

New Compliance Requirements to Prevent Trafficking: What do the rules require? What contractors are subject to them? What questions remain?

Posted in Ethics & Compliance
On January 29, 2015, the FAR Council published a final rule amending the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) to strengthen existing regulations against trafficking in persons. The new rule, which will be effective March 2, 2015, includes a variety of new compliance provisions that will impact government contractors of all shapes and sizes. The agencies first… Continue Reading

My Mandatory Disclosure article in National Defense Magazine

Posted in Ethics & Compliance
Ever had to deal with the Mandatory Disclosure Rule and its less-than-clear guidelines for what to report to the IG and CO? I’ve written an article for National Defense Magazine that looks at the stakeholders that analyze each mandatory disclosure, and discusses the impact disclosures have on these communities.,TroubleandLegalFees.aspx… Continue Reading

C&M Lawyers Conduct Live Webinar on Business Ethics on Thursday, October 18

Posted in Ethics & Compliance
At 1:00 p.m. (Eastern) on October 18, 2012, Crowell & Moring attorneys Cathy Kunz, Richard Arnholt and Tiffany Wynn will conduct  a webinar on behalf of L2 Federal Resources entitled “Business Ethics  in Government Contracting: Legal Requirements & Best Practices for Compliance.” This 90-minute webinar will provide an overview of the requirements in FAR 52.203-13 for a… Continue Reading

Mandatory Display of Fraud Posters

Posted in Ethics & Compliance
On September 16, 2011, DoD issued a final rule that requires contractors to prominently display fraud hotline posters prepared by the DoD Office of the Inspector General. These posters must be displayed in common work areas within business segments performing work on DoD contracts. The current posters from the DoD IG can be found here and here.… Continue Reading

Proposal To Further Limit Executive Branch Employees’ Acceptance Of Gifts From Lobbyists

Posted in Ethics & Compliance
On September 13, 2011, the Office of Government Ethics proposed amendments to the regulation governing the acceptance of gifts by executive branch employees. The purpose of the amendments is to (a) implement the lobbyist gift ban already applicable, by Executive Order of the President, to most political appointees; and (b) impose limits on the use of… Continue Reading

DoD Ethics Update

Posted in Ethics & Compliance
On July 8 the Department of Defense Standards of Conduct Office (SOCO) issued an update to the Encyclopedia of Ethical Failures (EEF), its listing of violations of federal ethics law by government and contractor personnel. The encyclopedia, which is organized by type of violations, including conflicts of interest, misuse of Government equipment, violations of post-employment… Continue Reading