Internal investigation

A fundamental tool in the prevention, detection, and management of risk within a company, the internal investigation is increasingly implemented.

Internal investigations are meant to prove or to refute the veracity of facts likely to be at the origin of sanctions and/or an engagement of responsibility, in order to bring a fast and effective response.

Internal investigations cover all kinds of facts that are likely to be illicit and to characterize, for example, offences of harassment, corruption, money laundering or fraud. They are useful in the prevention, evaluation, and management of risk.

It now also is criminal defense argument in a context of negotiated justice, and more precisely in France, in the implementation of a Public Interest Judicial Agreement (“Convention judiciaire d’intérêt public” - “CJIP”). We regularly assist companies in conducting internal investigations, and we do so in compliance with the ethical obligations imposed on lawyers (professional secrecy and independence) and the best practices developed in this area.

Your challenges

Effective risk management

Internal investigations are tools for assessing the legal, operational, or reputational risks to which a company is exposed, which facilitates their control.

The implementation of reporting tools

The development of internal investigations and the associated risk management are dependent on the existence, within the company, of effective reporting procedures and mechanisms, in addition to compliance with the provisions relating to whistleblower protection.

An internal investigation procedure in compliance with the best practices

Internal investigations are a sensitive exercise and must be carried out in compliance with the applicable rules, in particular those relating to the processing of personal data and those relating to the respect for the privacy of employees.

An effective and strategic response

Following an internal investigation, the company must be able to draw consequences and take corrective measures (improvement or creation of new internal procedures, disciplinary sanctions, remediation, exchange with the authorities).

A renewed use of the internal investigation

In addition to being a strategic tool for the development and securing of a company's business, the internal investigation is, since the Sapin II law, a condition for benefiting from a “CJIP” and helps to demonstrate a willingness to cooperate with the authorities.

Our way

A strong experience in the realization of internal investigations

We have been conducting internal investigations for many years for very large companies and SMEs in various sectors, which has enabled us to develop a great expertise in this area.

A precise knowledge of the internal investigation procedure led by outside counsel

We carry out internal investigations in compliance with the highest applicable standards and with our ethical obligations, in complete independence, with integrity and in compliance with professional secrecy.

A support at all stages of the investigation

According to an investigation plan discussed with the client, we collect, process and study data useful to the demonstration of the truth, we interview relevant persons, and we draft an investigation report which enables us to analyze the situation and propose the adequate remedial measures.

A team that is reactive and adaptable to clients' needs

Because internal investigations are generally synonymous with crisis situations, we are able to respond quickly and precisely to your needs.

A strong network of trusted partners

We work closely with trusted partners (such as foreign law firms, forensics, consulting and auditing firms, or suppliers of alert processing systems) in order to provide our clients with the most complete and qualitative service possible.

Clients' stories

How to prepare for an interview in an internal investigation?

Summoning an employee to an interview during an internal investigation to be heard on the facts
Read Story

What to do when receiving an alert?

Formulation of serious allegations of fraud and abuse of corporate assets by a former employee following his departure from the company.
Read Story
« To this day, no jurisdiction has had to decide the question of the lack or insufficiency of adversarial process in an internal investigation »
Julie Zorrilla
Accolades Navacelle
Navacelle identified in 2021
as one of the world's top 100 firms for
cross-border investigations
NAVACELLE recognized once again in 2021
by Décideurs Magazine
International and Internal Investigations
Guide Compliance, Fraud & Investigations
Stéphane de Navacelle selected by peers
for inclusion in the 12th Edition of The Best Lawyers in France in
NAVACELLE recognized once again in 2021
by The Legal 500 as
one of the top law firms in
NAVACELLE recognized once again in 2021
by The Legal 500 as
one of the top law firms
in dispute resolution
Stéphane de Navacelle once again in 2021 picked in Chambers Europe ranking
Category Corporate Compliance & Investigations in France
Sources say: "He is incredibly diplomatic and good at navigating complicated clients."
Julie Zorrilla selected in
Women in Investigations 2021 as
NAVACELLE recognized once again in 2021
by Le Point
identifed as one of the Tier 1 law firm in

Latest news and insights

News & Noteworthy content from Navacelle

GIR 100 Navacelle
10 November 2021
Navacelle identified in GIR 100 2021
Navacelle identified as the French independent leading crossborder investigations practices by Global Investigations Review (GIR).
Guide to Corporate Internal Investigations
9 November 2021
Guide to Corporate Internal Investigations by the American Bar Association
Julie Zorrilla and Stéphane de Navacelle contribute to the International Guide to Corporate Internal Investigations by the American Bar Association.
Stéphane de Navacelle
Managing partner Navacelle
Julie Zorrilla
Partner Navacelle
10 May 2021
Investigations and Compliance: the Lawyer is a Snitch?! (in French)
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13 April 2021
Artificial intelligence at the service of cross-border investigations (in French)
Stéphane de Navacelle answers Arnaud Dumourier, Editor-in-chief Le Monde du Droit, on artificial intelligence in cross-border investigations.
24 September 2020
Contribution to the Lettre des Juristes d’Affaires n°28 – professional secrecy today (in French)
Stéphane de Navacelle quoted by Anne Portmann in the Lettre des Juristes d’Affaires – French Corporate law weekly – about reality of French professional secrecy in...
Stéphane de Navacelle
Managing partner Navacelle
6 July 2020
Interview of Stéphane de Navacelle in The Letter from Business Lawyers  (in French)
Stéphane de Navacelle met by French weekly LJA (La Lettre des Juristes d’Affaires) on the latest trends regarding specificities and ethics of carrying out internal inv...
Anne Portmann
Jeanne Disset
15 April 2020
Presentation “The internal investigation by lawyers” in Live Facebook
Stéphane de Navacelle presents – with moderators Bar Council (Conseil de l’Ordre) members Hirbod Dehghani-Azar and Yannick Sala – as moderators – to over a thous...
Stéphane de Navacelle
Managing partner Navacelle
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Report on the interests at play in relation to the status and the role of the “investigating” lawyers in internal in...
Stéphane de Navacelle, co-author with Paris Bar immediate past Vice-President Basile Ader (August Debouzy) and contributors Thomas Baudesson (Clifford Chance) and Jean-Y...
Stéphane de Navacelle
Managing partner Navacelle
Basile Ader
Former Vice President of the Paris Bar
Jean-Yves Garaud
Partner at Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton
Thomas Baudesson
Partner at Clifford Chance
8 June 2017
Amicus Radio – Internal investigations (in French)
Stéphane de Navacelle and Aurélien Hamelle invited by Amicus Radio to answer Antoine Garapon‘s questions on internal investigations and what they mean for French comp...
Stéphane de Navacelle
Managing partner Navacelle
Aurélien Hamelle
General Counsel of the Total Group
17 March 2017
ICLG – Corporate investigations 2017
NAVACELLE law firm addresses frequent issues in corporate investigations laws and regulations in ICLG Corporate Investigations 2017.
Stéphane de Navacelle
Managing partner Navacelle
11 October 2016
GIR – Paris bar association issues recommendations for Upjohn warning in internal investigation
Stéphane de Navacelle quoted in GIR article of October 11, 2016 on internal investigations and new ethical framework within the Paris Bar: “Paris bar association issue...
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