AIG Global Legal, Compliance, Regulatory and Government Affairs Department Recognized by Legal News Publications.
In 2014, AIG’s Global Legal, Compliance, Regulatory and Government Affairs (GLCR) department received recognition from the The New York Law Journal (NYLJ) and Corporate Counsel – two prominent legal news publications.
The New York Law Journal recognized AIG with its inaugural 2014 Outstanding Legal Department award. Competing against other in-house law departments, AIG was the sole winner in the category. The criteria for the award included success stories on “how a given corporate counsel's office, regardless of its size, came up with innovative programs, used ingenuity to solve problems or surmounted a scarcity of resources and still delivered high quality client service.”
NYLJ’s editor-in-chief, Kris Fischer, when presenting the award to AIG on March 10, 2014, commented that the ingenuity of AIG’s legal team is particularly noteworthy within the context of the intense regulatory and media pressures that faced the company in the aftermath of the 2008 financial crisis.
Says AIG Executive Vice President and General Counsel Tom Russo in the NYLJ article: “Over the last four years, this company has restructured itself and become a very solid company. The real turning point was paying back the U.S. government $182 billion, plus a profit. The legal department was very much in the heart of all that restructuring, and that was pretty special to our stakeholders, including the U.S. government and the Federal Reserve.”
Both publications recognized AIG’s team for helping the company respond to unprecedented business, litigation, regulatory, and other challenges. These included:
- Leadership and negotiation of over 65 completed strategic AIG transactions in a complex, unparalleled, multiyear $107 billion restructuring program. This also included six sales of AIG common stock by the U.S. Treasury and repurchased all outstanding warrants issued to the U.S. Treasury
- Successful resolution of multibillion dollar legacy class actions, as well as headline-grabbing litigations arising from the financial crisis – all under intense public scrutiny
- Skillful identification of claims against counterparties that sold fraudulent residential mortgage-backed securities (RMBS) to AIG and later successful mediation of settlements by in-house lawyers resulting in $1.3 billion in recoveries without having to file a complaint
The publications also touched on AIG’s disciplined approach to managing outside legal costs in partnership with the claims function, which has realized hundreds of millions of dollars in savings for AIG and its insureds, as well as new employee engagement programs for colleagues and pro bono initiatives like the educational nonprofit Street Law, which teaches high school students about the law, as well as the Iraqi Refugee Assistance Project, which helps refugees immigrate to the United States.
In the June 2014 cover story entitled “Back from the Brink: AIG's Lawyers Helped the Company Survive", Corporate Counsel summarizes why AIG was selected: “GLCR was able to stage this dramatic recovery and silence naysayers….Its lawyers have proven that they can work hard, innovate through tricky situations, and use technology and process management to grow ever leaner and more efficient.”
Said AIG President and CEO Bob Benmosche, “These awards are recognition of what the Board and I always knew – that GLCR is as good as it gets.”