Corporate Social Responsibility Law & Policy

Now more than ever, companies are held accountable for making a positive impact on social, economic and environmental aspects of society. Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) has become a priority for many organizations as they assess their responsibility to their employees and the broader community, as well as consider the merits of forming a benefit corporation or corporate foundation. Goodwin recognizes the importance of addressing the legal needs of public, private and non-profit organizations that want to give back to their communities and set an example as our country faces increasing health, safety and racial justice issues. Our CSR Law and Policy practice supports clients working towards a sustainable future for both their business and the planet, focusing on the laws and policies surrounding corporate governance, giving, investment and operations.

We offer holistic solutions across Goodwin’s CSR-related practice areas that address a company’s corporate policies, compliance and actions related to the well-being of its employees, customers, stakeholders and the environment, including:

Corporate Governance and Structure

  • Environmental, social and governance (ESG) issues
  • Public disclosures and shareholder activism
  • Benefit Corporation (B Corp.) formation and certification

Corporate Philanthropy

  • Corporate giving and matching programs
  • Corporate foundation formation and tax issues
  • M+A matters
  • Cause marketing programs

Industry-Specific Considerations and Expertise

  • Fair and responsible banking
  • Financial inclusion
  • Cleantech
  • Employment law
  • Products liability
  • Health equity programs

Our team of lawyers applies industry-specific experience to advise clients on the broad range of legal, reputational and operational risks associated with their CSR objectives by providing advice on:

  • Investor disclosure requirements, ratings issues and shareholder activism risks
  • Strategy and thought leadership regarding CSR and corporate philanthropy program design or redesign
  • Benefit corporation and tax-exempt organization formation
  • Corporate foundation risks
  • Labor and employment risks bearing on corporate board and employee diversity initiatives
  • Fair lending and Community Reinvestment Act obligations/examinations
  • Responsible uses of customers’ data and compliance with data privacy regulations
  • Vendor management strategies that support sustainability and diversity initiatives
  • Completing M&A transactions where the buyer or seller has a corporate philanthropy program
  • Developing new products and services that promote financial inclusion
  • Developing employee benefit programs to promote employees’ overall mental, physical and financial well being