1) The UK government has recently confirmed that the introduction of the long awaited Bribery Act 2010 will be delayed.
2) The Act sweeps away the multiplicity of statutory and common law offences, and replaces them with a set of four, seemingly, straightforward offences.
3) The modernisation of the law, however, could have alarming consequences for corporates with a presence in the UK due to the legislator’s failure to clarify key areas of the Act.
4) The areas corporates should be aware of:
a) The corporate liability offence
b) The extra territorial scope of the Act
c) The illegality of facilitation payments
d) The illegitimacy of payments to foreign public officials
e) The potential of debarment from public procurement contracts
f) The liability of senior officers
5) Corporates should, as a matter of urgency, carry out a full anti-bribery and corruption risk assessment. The risk assessment should:
6) Ascertain the corruption risks faced by their businesses
a) Determine and clarify the status of relationships with third parties: UK corporates could be responsible for the third parties’ failings
b) Review the appropriateness and effectiveness of all internal policies, procedures, and training
The enactment of the Bribery Act 2010 has, together with a series of recent headline grabbing actions taken by the UK regulatory authorities, been hailed as the beginning of a clear and aggressive attack by the UK on misconduct. However, what does the Bribery Act 2010 actually encompass and will corporates be in a better position as a result of the new legislation?
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