With the start of the Biden administration and a U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) led by Merrick Garland, predictions have begun about future trends in government enforcement. Two pieces of conventional wisdom emerge: First, the focus will shift to more white-collar crime enforcement actions. And second, the healthcare industry will continue to be a major focus for investigators and prosecutors.
We agree with both predictions. While the effect of administration changes on prosecutions and DOJ priorities is often overstated, Trump’s DOJ, even compared to recent Republican-led Justice Departments, was particularly focused on violent, drug, and immigration crimes, which necessarily diverted resources away from white-collar investigations. A swing back to a more muscular approach to white-collar and corporate fraud seems almost certain, particularly given the change in party in the administration.
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