Constangy, Brooks & Smith, LLP offers a number of service-oriented products, some of which can be priced for a client as a set fee, rather than billed on attorneys' hourly rates. For more information on the following products, prices, or other products available, please call 404.230.6730.
Employment Practices Compliance Audit – Our firm has developed a Compliance Review Audit to assess where companies might be vulnerable. This very comprehensive program identifies potential problem areas through interviews of human resources professionals, managers and supervisors, policy audits and a thorough walkthrough of the facility, with the advantage of the attorney-client privilege.
Our compliance questionnaire, designed by our attorneys and copyrighted, is intended for use only by experienced labor and employment counsel. It covers union related issues, wage/hour issues, affirmative action concerns, benefits, race/sex/religion/age discrimination, as well as safety and health programs. Employers are challenged in complying with all legal requirements, for sometimes, compliance with one law violates another. We focus on the practical.
Workers' Compensation Risk Reduction Strategies – In addition to defending alleged work injury claims when they arise, our workers' compensation attorneys counsel clients on methods to reduce claims and minimize exposure to those that do occur. Toward these goals, our attorney's may visit your work site and train key personnel on how to implement these policies and procedures, and also recommend forms, policies, and procedures which could result in significantly reduced exposure. They may also review your Panel of Physicians and current policy to ensure it is compliant with changing rules and requirements of the workers' compensation Boards and Commissions. This service is available in the states of Georgia and Tennessee.
Due Diligence Safety and Health Audits: We have been requested to evaluate safety and health (OSHA) compliance as part of the due diligence process when an existing client is considering the acquisition of another entity. This process has included the analysis of OSHA inspection and citation history, as well as an evaluation of the overall safety and health program within a company, including compliance with required OSHA programs.
Recordkeeping Audits and Training: With the exception of certain SIC codes (e.g., for some retail trade, financial and service industries) general industry employers are required to maintain OSHA 300 Logs tracking their OSHA recordable injuries and illnesses. OSHA recordkeeping is a compliance issue that is examined by the Agency during virtually every inspection and is a topic that has historically resulted in significant employer penalties. Last year, for example, Dupont settled a case, an OSHA recordkeeping case, by agreeing to pay a $70,000 penalty for violations at its Seaford, DE plant.
We have been called upon to conduct literally hundreds of audits of employers’ Logs and recordkeeping practices. Additionally, we conduct recordkeeping training classes and assist employers in ensuring that their recordkeeping system works effectively. Constangy, Brooks & Smith has developed unparalleled expertise and experience in this area.
Organizational Sentencing Guidelines Audits/Safety Systems Review: In 1991, a new set of criminal sentencing guidelines, designed to control the punishment of federal offenses committed by corporations and other organizations, went into effect. These new Organizational Sentencing Guidelines, 18 U.S.C. Appx. Ch. 8 (1991), resulted primarily from the increase in so-called white-collar corporate criminal activity in the banking, securities, defense procurement, and environmental compliance arenas. Since the Sentencing Guidelines went into effect, we have been requested to perform assessments of the extent to which clients’ overall safety and health programs meet the seven criteria for an effective corporate compliance program set forth in the Sentencing Guidelines. Based on the criteria outlined below, we review the overall programs and make recommendations designed to bring the programs into compliance with the Sentencing Guidelines and, at the same time, enhance the quality of employee safety and health programs.
The seven criteria that we examine under the Sentencing Guidelines are:
- The organization must have established compliance standards and procedures to be followed by its employees and other agents that are reasonably capable of reducing the prospect of criminal conduct.
- Specific individual(s) within high-level personnel of the organization must have been assigned overall responsibility to oversee compliance with such standards and procedures.
- The organization must have used due care not to delegate substantial discretionary authority to individuals whom the organization knew, or should have known through the exercise of due diligence, had a propensity to engage in illegal activities.
- The organization must have taken steps to communicate effectively its standards and procedures to all employees and other agents, e.g., by requiring participation in training programs or by disseminating publications that explain in a practical manner what is required.
- The organization must have taken reasonable steps to achieve compliance with its standards, e.g., by utilizing monitoring and auditing systems reasonably designed to detect criminal conduct by its employees and other agents and by having in place and publicizing a reporting system whereby employees and other agents could report criminal conduct by others within the organization without fear of retribution.
- The standards must have been consistently enforced through appropriate disciplinary mechanisms, including, as appropriate, discipline of individuals responsible for the failure to detect an offense.
- After an offense has been detected, the organization must have taken all reasonable steps to respond appropriately to the offense and to prevent further similar offenses -- including any necessary modifications to its program to prevent and detect violations of law.