SEC Veteran William J. Kotapish Joins Carlton Fields; Bolsters Firm’s Financial Services Regulatory Practice

Financial Services Regulatory   |   February 9, 2021
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Washington, D.C. – Carlton Fields is pleased to announce that prominent regulatory attorney William J. Kotapish has joined the firm in its Washington, D.C. office after a distinguished career at the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Kotapish fortifies Carlton Fields’ Financial Services Regulatory Practice with more than three decades of experience in financial products. He advises investment companies, investment advisers, and life insurance companies on securities compliance and regulatory matters. Kotapish previously served as assistant director in the SEC’s Division of Investment Management, overseeing the Office of Insurance Products.

“Bill will be an invaluable resource to our financial services clients,” said Ann Began Furman, Carlton Fields shareholder and co-chair of the firm’s Financial Services Regulatory Practice. “In his staff leadership role at the SEC, he was front and center in the regulation of investment products for the past 20 years.”

Added Richard T. Choi, Carlton Fields Washington, D.C. Office Managing Shareholder and a member of the Financial Services Regulatory Practice, “Bill is deeply knowledgeable about securities regulations and has an inside perspective on the thinking of SEC decision-makers. He is a strong addition to Carlton Fields’ brain trust of financial services attorneys who have devoted decades to counseling clients on regulatory and compliance matters.”

In his 20-year career with the SEC, Kotapish oversaw the review of variable product and underlying mutual fund registration statements, consideration and disposition of exemptive applications, and requests for no-action relief and interpretive guidance. Kotapish was deeply involved in establishing and updating standards for disclosure for a variety of financial products, including variable annuities, variable life insurance, and fixed indexed annuities.

He also advised SEC staff on legal and regulatory issues affecting SEC-registered insurance products and underlying mutual funds, rulemaking, and other initiatives. Prior to joining the SEC, Kotapish represented investment companies and investment advisers in private practice for more than a decade.

“Our Carlton Fields team has known Bill for many years,” said Gary O. Cohen, of counsel in the Financial Services Regulatory Practice. “He is a trusted thought leader in the securities industry and we are pleased to welcome him to the firm.”

Kotapish is an adjunct professor at the Catholic University of America, where he teaches a course on the regulation of investment companies and investment advisers. He is a frequent speaker on regulatory issues, including appearing on panels for the ALI CLE Conference on Life Insurance Company Products and the Practising Law Institute. Kotapish earned his J.D. from the Catholic University of America and his B.A. from the University of Virginia.

“Carlton Fields’ gifted lawyers are well-known and well-respected for their work in securities regulation and compliance, and I am happy to add to the great mix of experiences and knowledge at the firm,” Kotapish said.

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