Bribery

Bribery

We provide fast expert advice in relation to the Bribery Act 2010.  We can help, whether you are faced with allegations of bribery offences, are under investigation or simply need to understand what you need to do to comply with UK bribery and corruption laws.

The Bribery Act 2010 introduces the biggest shake up of UK anti-corruption laws for almost a hundred years.  It means that, from April 2011, bribery is the concern of all in business, not just public bodies and those dealing with public bodies.  Avoiding and preventing bribery should now be a high priority for all UK businesses.  Not only is it an offence to give or receive a bribe (or promise or offer to do so) but it is also an offence to fail to prevent bribery – as too is bribing a foreign official even if the bribe is legal in the foreign country.

The impact of the Bribery Act 2010 is far reaching. It will affect many of your business processes, for example:

  • employment policies and contracts with third parties should contain anti-corruption provisions
  • staff should be trained on and understand the new laws
  • your contracting process should be evaluated and policed to make sure contracts are not the result of corruption
  • you should have a clear policy on corporate hospitality and gifts to make sure they do not cross the line into bribery and corruption
  • you need to know who you are dealing with and be satisfied that they are not engaged in corrupt practices
  • once you have developed clear and robust policies you must them implement, police and monitor them.

Breach of the Bribery Act 2010 results in criminal penalties for both companies and individuals.  Those penalties include unlimited fines and/or 10 years imprisonment.  Directors and officers of companies found guilty of a bribery offence may be personally liable if the offence was committed with their consent or connivance.  In addition, a director may be disqualified for up to 15 years from holding the office of director.

You will find that we are approachable, understanding, sympathetic and practical in the advice that we give.

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