Internal business investigations may become necessary for a variety of reasons. This article is the second in a series of three in which we address what new in-house lawyers should know about internal investigations. The first article discussed what kind of concerns lead to internal investigations, how a business identifies such concerns, and whether an internal investigation is appropriate. This second article describes the pros and cons of outsourcing an internal investigation. The third and final article in the series will outline how to conduct an effective investigation.
The subject matter of an internal investigation may range from employee misconduct to data breaches to workplace safety. In evaluating the penalties and other costs that the business may incur from problems uncovered during an investigation, the in-house lawyer should carefully consider whether to conduct the investigation using internal resources or whether to outsource the investigation to a law firm or forensic accounting firm.