PracticeAccounting FirmsPoliticians join Supreme Court battle to sue accountants

Politicians join Supreme Court battle to sue accountants

US congressmen back shareholder bid to sue accountants, lawyers and bankers over fraud

Senior US politicians have weighed into a legal battle in the Supreme Court
that could decided whether investors in collapsed companies can recover money
from third parties such as accountants and auditors.

The two democrat congressmen, both chairmen of influential committees, have
asked to submit papers to support claims that auditors, accountants and lawyers
can be sued if they knowingly take part in a fraud scheme, according to the
Washington Post .

Congressman
Barney
Frank
, chairman of the House financial services committee and John Conyers,
chairman of the House judiciary committee, joined the battle after becoming
concerned that the US solicitor general might support the third parties and not
the shareholders.

The
case
has prompted speculation that if the case were successful it could open
the way for suing UK advisers connected with companies listed or registered in
the US.

The legal battle has prompted intense debate in the US where the President
and Treasury have said such a move would create too many risks for business,
while the SEC, the US financial watchdog, has backed shareholders in their
claim.

The Supreme Court is due to start the hearing on 9 October.

Further reading:

US-quoted
UK companies may face legal onslaught

SEC
backs investors suing Enron

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