Compliance queries trigger bust-up with lawyer

By Jonathan Ames

03 January 2013 at 10:33 BST

An eastern seaboard US property business has split with its general counsel amid concerns over financial reporting and compliance regimes, the company announced within the last few days.

Washington: property portfolio

Washington: property portfolio

Bethesda-based First Potomac Realty Trust – which has a $1.7 billion property portfolio covering Washington DC, Maryland and Virginia – announced it had agreed a $172,000 severance package with former head of legal Joel Bonder.
According to a report in the Washington Business Journal, the company also agreed to cover $120,000 in legal fees of the law firm Mr Bonder had instructed to conduct an internal investigation into its financial reporting, Los Angeles-based Gibson Dunn.

Second exit

Mr Bonder had been on leave since the beginning of October, when, as the Journal reported, First Potomac’s chief executive, Doug Donatelli, had transferred responsibility for legal affairs to Mr Bonder’s deputy and outside counsel.
The Journal also pointed out that the general counsel is the second top executive to leave the company in the wake of the $2.5 million investigation into its financial controls; chief financial officer Barry Bass resigned last September.


Also read...

Confusion over big four Indian law change

Report says big four accounting firms may soon be able to practice law in India after all.