Employee interviews in internal investigations
14 November 2019
Recent developments in the U.S., UK and Germany have cast a spotlight on the interplay between corporate internal investigation interviews and investigations by, and cooperation with, the authorities. Interviewing company employees is often a key part of an internal investigation.
Despite most employees having little choice but to agree to give internal interviews, they are not always granted the procedural safeguards associated with interviews conducted by authorities, such as a right to silence or a right to legal representation. Authorities in some jurisdictions have shown an increasing tendency towards seeking access to evidence from internal interviews (required as a mark of cooperation or by seizure) for use in a criminal investigation of the company and/or individuals.
So how can an organisation carry out internal interviews in a way which is effective in terms of getting information, but at the same time does not unduly prejudice the individual’s and the company’s position in later proceedings?