High Court's Disgorgement Ruling Could Curb SEC Authority

Law360 (November 6, 2019, 12:36 PM EST) -- On Nov. 1, the U.S. Supreme Court granted certiorari in Liu v. U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission to decide whether the SEC can obtain disgorgement as an equitable remedy in federal court enforcement actions.

The certiorari grant in this case is unusual, because the circuit courts that have considered the issue have all agreed that the SEC can obtain disgorgement from a district court exercising its equitable authority. Depending on how the court rules, this case could have major consequences for the SEC’s enforcement program, and even for the inherent equitable powers of Article III courts.

Background

Liu involves the operation...

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