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Managing Corporate Political Activity Compliance in the New Normal

(112 reviews)

Produced on October 15, 2020

$ 89 Election, Campaign, & Political and Election Year 2020 In Stock
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Course Information

Time 1h 4m
Difficulty Intermediate

Course Description

The COVID-19 pandemic has changed everything from how businesses are operating to how political campaigns conduct fundraising. But one thing that has not changed is the importance of complying with applicable laws regarding political activity. This presentation will provide an overview of how businesses can effectively manage potential risks associated with political activity while implementing a political activity compliance policy in the new normal. This includes understanding contribution rules, use of corporate resources for political activity, pay-to-play laws, individual political activity, and government ethics rules. Even when political campaigns are held virtually, elections are conducted by mail, and individual political activity may occur over social media, campaign-finance rules and other aspects of political law – including the importance of political-activity risk management – have not.   

Learning Objectives:

  1. Review the laws governing political activity for businesses

  2. Identify why corporate political activity compliance is important for all businesses, even for the ones that don’t think that they are politically active

  3. Examine the keys for developing and implementing an effective compliance policy

Credit Information

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Rebecca Moll Freed

Genova Burns LLC

Ms. Freed advises corporations, partnerships, limited liability companies, trade associations, charitable organizations, social welfare organizations and political action committees on the legal aspects of their political activities. 

Ms. Freed has substantial experience with New Jersey’s pay-to-play laws; she has lectured frequently on the topic, and written extensively on the issue as well, including articles for New Jersey Lawyer, New Jersey League of Municipalities Magazine, and New Jersey Law Journal.

Ms. Freed also has extensive experience in procurement law, assisting clients in the preparation of RFPs and RFQs on the state and local levels. She has represented numerous clients in bid protest disputes before administrative agencies and before the Appellate Division of New Jersey Superior Court.

As Director of the firm’s Corporate Political Activity Group, the Non-Profit and Tax Exempt Organization Practice Group and Vendor Political Activity & Ethics Compliance Training & Audit Programs, Ms. Freed provides training and counseling to companies, in-house counsel and corporate ethics and compliance officers who seek to maximize government contracting opportunities while assuring compliance with the law.


Representative Matters:

  • Assists clients in the development of political activity compliance policies and training programs.
  • Advises on corporate ethics.
  • Advises clients on the impact that political contributions may have had on their ability to maintain eligibility for government contracts at the state, county and local level.
  • Defends clients in pay-to-play ineligibility determinations at the state, county and local levels.
  • Represents non-profits on creating independent expenditure political action committees that comply with the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in Citizens United v. FEC.

Ms. Freed serves as co-Chair of the firm’s Strategic Planning Committee. From 2013 to 2015, Ms. Freed served as co-Chair of the firm’s Inclusionary Initiative, which encompasses the firm’s Women’s Initiative and Diversity Initiative. The Inclusionary Initiative focuses on the common goal of fostering better lawyers and serving our clients’ needs.


Memberships and Affiliations:

  • Member, Newark Academy Board of Governors
  • Participant, Newark Academy - Newark Scholars Program
  • Board Counsel, Women’s Political Caucus of New Jersey
  • Co-Chair of Common Ground Speaks, an initiative that sponsors a free lecture series featuring distinguished speakers who address topics related to child development, parenting and education at Far Hills Country Day School
  • Trustee, Partners for Women and Justice, 2011 to 2014



  • Recipient of the “Mary Philbrook Award” by Women’s Political Caucus of New Jersey, 2016
  • Honored as a “Woman of Distinction” for the Class of 1994 by Newark Academy for her contributions to the legal industry and to the community, 2014
  • Listed in NJBIZ as one of “Forty Under 40”, 2010
  • Listed in New Jersey Law Journal as one of “Forty Under 40”, 2008



  • “Adoption and Implementation of a Political Activity Compliance Policy: Don’t Let Your Employees’ Individual Political Activities Put Your Company at Risk” (New Jersey Lawyer, June 2014) (co-author)
  • “Independent Expenditures: A Mechanism for Bribery in the Procurement Process?” (New Jersey Lawyer, February 2013) (co-author)
  • “Local Pay-to-Play Restrictions: An Unconstitutional Impingement on First Amendment Rights?” (New Jersey Lawyer, Dec. 2006)
  • “How to Cut through the Confusion of Pay-to-Play” (New Jersey Municipalities, Feb. 2006)
  • “Pervasively Regulated Industries Can Participate Politically” (New Jersey Law Journal, 167 NJLJ 28, January 7, 2002) (co-author)
  • “The Right to Vote and Be Counted: A Liberty at Risk” (The New Jersey Lawyer, April 2005) (co-author)
  • “Pay-to-Play: Political Contributions Doing Business with the Government Must Beware” (New Jersey League of Municipalities Magazine and the New Jersey Business and Industry Magazine, 2004) (co-author)


Bar Admissions:

  • New Jersey, and U.S. District Court, District of New Jersey, 2001
  • New York, 2002



  • Georgetown University Law Center, J.D., 2001
  • Tufts University, B.A., 1998

Avi Kelin

Genova Burns LLC

Avi D. Kelin is an Associate in the Firm's Newark, NJ office and a member of the Corporate Law & Business Transactions, Commercial Real Estate & Redevelopment, Construction Law & Litigation and Corporate Political Activity Practice Groups. Mr. Kelin focuses on the interaction between government and business. He advises businesses, trade associations and individuals on lobbying requirements, campaign-finance law, pay-to-play restrictions, government-ethics rules, and the government-procurement process.

Mr. Kelin assists clients in establishing and operating New Jersey and Federal PACs and Super PACs from the initial registration process to ongoing operating matters. He advises 501(c)(3) and 501(c)(4) tax-exempt organizations on corporate governance and their political activity.

Mr. Kelin advises political candidates on campaign-finance compliance and government officials on ethics requirements as well as on related government investigations and enforcement actions.

As a member of the Firm’s Commercial Real Estate & Redevelopment Practice Group, Mr. Kelin counsels clients on a wide array of commercial leasing and transactional agreements and disputes.

Mr. Kelin also provides counsel to business entities and non-profit organizations on their Corporate Law & Business Transactions needs, including service agreements, bylaws and operating agreements, and policy documents.

In addition, Mr. Kelin concentrates on legal issues surrounding the emerging technology of autonomous vehicles and has written several articles on this topic, including those appearing on NJ.com and in the Commercial Observer. He won the 2014 Howard J. Rudge Scholarship Prize for his paper, “Last Chance Power Drive: Why and How the United States Should Prepare for Autonomous Cars.”

Mr. Kelin served as an Associate of The George Washington International Law Review. His note, "Wanted Dead, Not Alive: Why Canada Should Allow Life Settlements," was published by The George Washington International Law Review in December 2014.


Alan A.R. C.

Very good CLE.

Jenik R.

solid and informative

Donna W.

It was fascinating to view this after the recent election and recalling some of the newspaper headlines on this subject. Excellent presentation by both faculty members!

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