DOJ Issues Guidance on the Evaluation of Antitrust Compliance Programs

On July 11, 2019, Assistant Attorney General Makan Delrahim announced that the DOJ’s Antitrust Division has decided to reverse its long-standing policy of insisting on guilty pleas for companies involved in criminal violations of the antitrust laws that do not otherwise qualify for leniency under the Division’s Corporate Leniency Policy. This shift opens a new path to a potential deferred prosecution agreement for companies with “effective” antitrust compliance programs, measured under new guidance issued by the Division for evaluating such programs. As a result, the Division will now consider the adequacy and effectiveness of a company’s antitrust compliance program when making its charging decisions. Delrahim’s remarks are available here and a Sullivan & Cromwell memorandum on the topic is available here.