How Long Does The SEC Subpoena Process Take?

dark-question-1-1193474-m-300x224When you receive an SEC subpoena, one of the first things that you want to know is “how long before this is over?” While that is an important question, it unfortunately is not one that has a definite answer.
Frequently, the time to produce materials will range from weeks to about a month. As we said yesterday in our post about what materials are required to be produced, an extension of time to produce documents may be negotiated. Also, if the materials requested are more difficult to obtain or require forensic computing, the time to produce may be longer as well.
Once you have produced documents, the waiting game begins. Before anything else happens, the Commission usually will review the materials you have provided. Typically, once they have reviewed your production, the Commission will either: 1. Make a supplemental request of you for more documents, 2. Call you in for testimony, or 3. Choose not to have you in for testimony.
A supplemental request for production will typically have a similar time frame as the initial request – a few weeks to a month. A date for testimony will typically be scheduled within a similar timeframe, if the Commission chooses option 2. Option 3 can be a bit of a wild card, since you do not know what the Commission is considering and how they view you, but usually is a good sign.
Ultimately, if you are the target of an investigation, the whole investigatory process can take years, whether you choose to settle or fight. However, the period of time when you will be responding to the subpoena is typically a matter of a few months, whether you are a target or simply a witness.