Porter Hedges attorneys provide the help clients need with every type of internal investigation. We are intimately familiar with the necessary steps to investigate internal and external fraud, alleged stock option backdating, shareholder derivative suits, as well as white collar criminal allegations. In both criminal and civil actions, we have counseled and represented many officers, directors, witnesses, and targets in state and federal investigations and prosecutions.

In-house general counsels, CEOs, and board committee members regularly consult with Porter Hedges about their general corporate practices, fiduciary responsibilities, the business judgment rule, and numerous other questions that can arise during of internal investigations. Because our corporate governance, compliance, and investigations are an important part of our Corporate practice, we are well positioned to advise clients when investigations occur related to these issues.

Among the issues we have dealt with in internal investigations are:

  • Advising board committees in internal investigations regarding alleged accounting improprieties.
  • Settling executive compensation arrangements associated with employment terminations.
  • Representing clients against claims of fraud and breach of fiduciary duty.
  • Representing audit and special committees in connection with allegations of accounting irregularities and financial reporting improprieties.
  • Assisting clients with internal corporate investigations and SEC and/or stock exchange inquiries.
  • Defending against alleged of Foreign Corrupt Practices Act violations.
  • Conducting FCPA practice audits.
  • Advising on shareholder derivative suits related to such allegations as:
    • Improper revenue recognition practices
    • Misapplication of corporate funds
    • Fraudulent billing practices
    • Earnings management issues
    • Accounting discrepancies
    • Improper due diligence

Related Practices


White Collar and Corporate Internal Investigations

  • Representation of an independent oil and gas exploration and production company and its Board of Directors in federal and Texas state class action merger litigation arising out of sale of the company where plaintiffs alleged sale price and process were flawed.
  • Representation of defendants in a Department of Justice, Antitrust Division investigation of motion picture industry.
  • Representation of individuals in securities fraud actions brought by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).
  • Representation of companies and individuals, both plaintiffs and defendants, in private securities fraud litigation.
  • Representation of audit committees and other special committees of corporate boards of directors with regard to internal investigations and the defense of securities litigation.
  • Representation of companies and individuals, both plaintiffs and defendants, in litigation and arbitration involving securities broker/dealers.


  • Representation of over a dozen current and former officers and directors at several oilfield drilling companies in Audit and Special Board Committee, DOJ, and SEC investigations, and shareholder derivative suits involving activities in Nigeria, Kazakhstan, South America, and the Middle East.
  • Representation of the Audit Committee of industrial services provider in internal investigation of activities in South America, Indonesia, and the Caribbean.
  • Representation of a senior executive of a global engineering firm in a DOJ investigation of activities in Nigeria, China, and Indonesia.
  • Representation of a professional services provider with regard to activities in China.
  • Representation of the CFO of oilfield service provider in Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) investigation of activities in South America.
  • Representation of the CFO and Controller of an oilfield services provider in Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) investigation of activities in Nigeria, North Sea and South America.
  • Representation of numerous companies in the energy business with regard to creation, implementation, and counsel regarding compliance programs.
  • Represented international offshore energy companies in conducting due diligence reviews of international agents and vendors in Mexico, Brazil, Trinidad, and Tobago, The Netherlands, Scotland, Ghana, Nigeria, Cote d’Ivoire, Cameroon, South Africa, Libya, United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Malaysia, Singapore, and China, which included performing SDN checks, reviewing due diligence questionnaires completed by potential vendors and agents, as well as working with third-party background checks such as Kreller and Control Risks.
  • Represented international offshore energy companies in creating due diligence questionnaires that address both the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) and the UK Bribery Act.



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