We survey the empirical literature on the determinants of firms' compliance with mandatory SEC disclosure rules. We begin with a discussion of the role of boards of directors, public accounting firms, and corporate attorneys in the preparation and review of mandatory disclosures. We then organize current research into three broad types of variation in compliance: completeness, timeliness and readability. Our review highlights three interesting areas for future research: (1) studies that examine the relations between completeness, timeliness and readability within the same research design; (2) studies that assess whether boards of directors, public accounting firms and corporate attorneys view disclosure compliance as a general firm policy; and (3) studies that investigate the influence of corporate attorneys on mandatory disclosure, as well as studies of disclosure issues that require collaboration between auditors and corporate attorneys. As a first step to address the latter agenda, we provide new empirical evidence regarding the impact of corporate attorneys on disclosure compliance. Copyright © 2013 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.