The one year anniversary of the Bribery Act 2010 coming into force is rapidly approaching in July this year. A recent survey carried out by Ernst & Young of one thousand UK middle managers has revealed a poor level of knowledge among middle managers of their legal obligations under the Bribery Act.
The results of the survey show that:
- Almost three quarters of middle managers are still not aware of the Bribery Act
- Only 55% of middle managers felt that they had received adequate training to ensure compliance with the Act
The Bribery Act applies to all UK businesses and the strict liability offence of failure to prevent bribery by associated persons (including employees and service providers) can lead to prosecutions and fines. In January this year, the Serious Fraud Office announced that it had successfully required a parent company to repay dividends paid to it by its subsidiary where the profits underpinning those dividends were derived from corrupt business practices. All the indications are that enforcement action in the UK will increase to mirror what has happened in the US over the last few years.
Stevens & Bolton LLP has a wide range of resources, such as risk assessment questionnaires designed to highlight the areas of risk for your business, and is happy to assist in educating board members and senior managers on their obligations under the Bribery Act. Please contact one of our Bribery Act team listed below, or your usual contact at Stevens & Bolton LLP.
Beverley Flynn – firstname.lastname@example.org
Richard King – email@example.com