An internal investigation is an important mechanism an organization can use to address an allegation of wrongdoing, determine legal liability, identify individuals or parties with culpability, comply with regulatory requirements, develop corrective measures and enhance operational efficiencies. Buckner is pleased to continue its blog series highlighting best practices, strategies and techniques that can be used by organizational leaders and counsel during an internal investigation. Today’s post will continue a review of witness interview strategies with a discussion on preparing for conducting investigative interviews.
An investigator should never take an investigation interview lightly. A comprehensive preparation process should be used by investigators prior to every interview. A well-prepared investigator will know the case well and will be ready for every contingency. For example, an investigator should include the following tasks in his or her pre-interview preparation process:
- Confirm the date, time, and location of the scheduled interview with all involved individuals, including, but not limited to, the regulatory agency investigator (if conducting a joint investigation).
- Review the investigation plan, key terminology list, key location maps and fact chronology.
- Review memoranda, reports and notes of prior interviews.
- Review relevant documents and other evidence.
- Review processes, procedures and protocol at issue.
- Prepare an outline of the interview questions.
- Prepare a contingency plan to address issues that may arise during the interview.
- Makes copies of any documents that will be used during the interview.
- Coordinate pertinent activities with involved individuals (e.g., court reporter, interview room reservation).
- Create and review a list of key individuals and parties.
- Review relevant organizational and relationship charts.
- Research federal, state and, if relevant foreign, laws pertinent to the interview (including attorney-client privilege, privacy, recording of interviews).
For more information on conducting internal investigations, please contact Michael L. Buckner at +1-954-941-1844 or firstname.lastname@example.org.