Business & Human Rights
Paul Hastings is a global leader in addressing business and human rights issues, providing unparalleled talent and expertise to assist companies in resolving their most challenging and complex human rights dilemmas. We work closely with our clients to understand and advise on their business and legal objectives, delivering tailored solutions, innovative strategies and value-add offerings, and seamless service across practices and regions.
We are the practitioners with whom governments engage regarding their human rights agendas and regulatory approaches, from whom global NGOs seek counsel and advice, and to whom the most prominent business and human rights consultancies turn on behalf of their most trusted clients.
Shaping the Business & Human Rights Landscape
Our partners have worked on business and human rights, international humanitarian law, responsible business conduct, and government investigations for the majority of their careers.
- We helped draft and interpret the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises and sector specific guidance.
- Our lawyers assisted in the development of some of the leading international business and human rights standards across a range of industries.
- We assist the world’s largest companies and organizations in their most difficult human rights and international humanitarian law problems.
- We serve as formal advisors to leading business and human rights organizations, including BSR and the Global Business Initiative on Human Rights, the Secretariat for the Voluntary Principles on Security and Human Rights; are Members of the Indonesian B20 Task Force on Integrity and Compliance, the Knoble Financial Crimes Network, the Cobalt Alliance, Revive South Sudan, ECPAT USA and The Sentry.
- We provide regular briefings and host conferences on legal business and human rights developments to leading business and human rights organizations.
Leading Legal and Compliance Practitioners
We are highly experienced lawyers who apply traditional legal and compliance skillsets to business and human rights. This enables us to provide innovative and practical solutions specific to human rights, integrate human rights into existing compliance and program structures and legal activities, and devise holistic approaches to business and human rights dilemmas.
- We have developed, implemented, overseen, and monitored global standalone human rights programs and assisted in integrating human rights into existing anti-corruption and international regulatory compliance programs.
- We have conducted dozens of due diligence exercises specific to human rights and perform assessments where human rights and other legal and global regulatory compliance areas are at issue, including anti-corruption, sanctions, ITAR, export controls, and tax.
- We have conducted hundreds of investigations related to human rights and international humanitarian law, and investigations involving human rights as one of several subject areas.
- We represent companies in government enforcement matters specific to human rights and cases involving human rights and other regulatory areas.
Areas of Focus:
Disputes and Investigations
We represent clients in a range of disputes, including arbitration, transnational tort litigation, and quasi-judicial proceedings such as OECD National Contact Point Specific Instances. We have overseen or directed hundreds of human rights-related investigations, taking place on five continents, across a range of sectors and substantive issues.
Government Hearings and Enforcement Proceedings
We regularly prepare clients for testimony related to human rights issues before Congressional and Parliamentary Committees, and represent clients in a variety of human rights-related enforcement proceedings around the world.
Assessments and Diligence
We conduct and oversee a variety of human rights assessments and due diligence exercises, including human rights impact assessments, assessments under the Voluntary Principles on Security and Human Rights, operational diligence, and acquisition and disposition diligence.
We design human rights policies and procedures, conduct trainings, draft board charters, draft human rights contract provisions, and assist in designing and implementing human rights governance systems.
We assist companies in developing grievance mechanisms and remedy approaches, including in some of the most complex situations in the world.
Reporting and Disclosures
We regularly review and advise companies on their on human rights-related disclosures and non-financial reporting.
We provide advice to companies on compliance with leading hard and soft laws, emerging legislation and norms, and to governments on human rights-related legislation and regulatory approaches.
Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) Counsel