Billions: Regulatory Enforcement Negotiations

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Episode 6 of Showtime’s Billions leads up to a powerful scene where Axe and Rhoades finally go head-to-head. This blog will explore what you can expect to really happen in negotiations with an enforcement team if a similar situation were to occur.

Spoilers Ahead

In this episode we see a lot of intervention by Wendy Rhoades, Axe’s on staff Psychologist and loyal confidant, who is also Chuck Rhoades’ wife. Wendy finally convinces both men separately that settling is in both of their best interest – they won’t be seen as losing and the other side won’t be seen as winning. Axe agrees to pay the largest fine in history, $1.9 billion, and Axe Capital will be restricted to operating as a family office. In exchange, Axe will not serve any time. During the final scene, Axe and Rhoades are face-to-face in Rhoades’ conference room for a plea meeting. Rhoades throws a curve ball at the last second and changes the terms of the settlement agreement by insisting that Axe sign an admission of guilt in addition to the fine and trading restrictions. Axe reluctantly agrees but his ego won’t allow for this to just pass and he emphatically comments about how he will make back the $1.9 billion in six to eight months. Rhoades’ ego can’t let it go. Rhoades one ups Axe and declares that Axe Capital will not be allowed to operate as a family office as the deal terms have changed – he is now instituting a life-time ban on Axe from ever trading again, even for himself. This pushes Axe too far, and he tears up the $1.9 billion check and storms out of the office.

It has been our experience that terms of a settlement agreement can change at a last minute’s notice. Typically this will occur when a new fact or circumstance arises, or candidly, if the enforcer just doesn’t like a situation or person. However, in this circumstance, where Rhoades would have gotten the largest fine ever against an icon like Axe which would have made headlines and provided a guaranteed push to his next political office, the deal should have gone through.

Settlement negotiations are very complex. If you ever find yourself in a situation where a regulatory settlement is eminent, it is imperative you seek counsel immediately. Jacko Law Group, PC is here to help. For more information on regulatory enforcements, contact JLG at 619.298.2880 or info@jackolg.com.

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