Kristin H. Jones is a partner in the White Collar Litigation and Investigations Practice Group of Pepper Hamilton LLP, resident in the Philadelphia office.
Ms. Jones specializes in civil and white collar criminal matters arising out of allegations of fraud, false statements and bad faith. Ms. Jones represents businesses and individuals facing investigation by federal and state law enforcement authorities and government agencies. Her work frequently involves the intersection of criminal investigations and civil litigation. She has significant courtroom experience, and has tried cases in state and federal courts and arbitrated matters in AAA and other forums.
Ms. Jones is experienced in investigating claims of misconduct and abuse, in particular hotline and whistleblower complaints. Ms. Jones has investigated sensitive allegations of verbal, emotional and physical abuse, bullying, hazing, discrimination, harassment and sexual misconduct for a wide variety of organizations, including colleges, universities, schools, and sports organizations. She is experienced in navigating SafeSport issues for U.S. Olympic Committee-recognized national governing bodies and their local affiliated organizations.
Ms. Jones serves on the firm’s Compensation Committee. Before joining Pepper in 2007, Ms. Jones was an associate in the white collar and securities litigation department at Dechert LLP.
Ms. Jones has conducted complex investigations of a wide variety of sensitive matters for companies, organizations and educational institutions. For example, Ms. Jones has:
- investigated individual and high-profile institutional issues of sexual misconduct and Title IX compliance for colleges and universities
- investigated allegations of verbal and emotional abuse, hazing, and bullying for a sports national governing body
- investigated whistleblower complaints of fraud and misconduct within sales organizations of a wide variety of companies, including pharmaceutical and medical device manufacturers and automotive suppliers
- investigated allegations of physician and staff misconduct, including billing irregularities, at behavioral health service providers and nursing homes.
Criminal and False Claims Act Matters and Related Counseling
Ms. Jones routinely represents companies and individuals facing government investigations, criminal charges, and allegations of False Claims Act violations. For example, Ms. Jones has:
- defended the owner of a manufacturing company at trial in a federal criminal case based on allegations of disadvantaged business enterprise fraud
- obtained a complete dismissal with prejudice of a False Claims Act case against a leading national general contractor that was premised on allegations of disadvantaged business enterprise fraud
- defended a government contractor in a False Claims Act case premised on allegations of self-dealing by project managers and provision of non-conforming product
- represented individuals in investigations and cases involving a variety of federal criminal charges, including tax fraud, insider trading, criminal OSHA violations and bid rigging
- represented individuals and entities in federal and state grand jury investigations, including responding to subpoenas for documents and testimony.
Ms. Jones uses her experience defending against allegations of criminal conduct and False Claims Act violations to counsel clients on compliance and fraud-prevention measures. For example, Ms. Jones is nationally recognized on DBE compliance and enforcement issues, including counseling major national suppliers in the construction industry on avoiding pass-through situations.
In addition to defending companies and individuals accused of crimes, Ms. Jones also represents companies and individuals who are victims of crimes, including victims of Ponzi schemes, embezzlements and other frauds, assisting with referrals to federal and state law enforcement.
Insurance Bad Faith and Fraud
Ms. Jones has almost two decades of experience in insurance bad faith and fraud cases. Ms. Jones frequently represents leading national insurers in bad faith actions challenging their claims handling practices. Ms. Jones has obtained summary judgment on plaintiffs’ bad faith claims and secured complete victories for the insurers in numerous cases, including Allstate Insurance Company v. Vargas, Crawford v. Allstate Insurance Company, Thomer v. Allstate Insurance Company, and Rau v. Allstate Insurance Company. Ms. Jones often counsels insurers on good faith claims handling practices and advises on complex coverage issues.
Ms. Jones also has experience defending companies against government allegations of insurance fraud under unique state laws that mimic the False Claims Act. She has defended an international medical device manufacturer accused of violating the California Insurance Fraud Prevention Act and a provider of athletic training services accused of violating the New Jersey Insurance Fraud Prevention Act.