UK Bribery Act

Do you have adequate procedures in place?

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UK Bribery Act

The UK Bribery Act came into force on 1st July 2011.  It applies to organisations that are incorporated in the UK or conduct business in the UK, whether or not they have a physical presence in the country.

What are the risks?

There are many activities that could put your organisation at risk: 

  • Is your business based in the UK (whole or part)?
  • Are you a UK subsidiary of an organisation where the parent company is based outside the UK?
  • Do you work with third-parties such as agents, distributors and consultants?
  • Do you currently have an anti-bribery policy in place?
  • Have you reviewed your anti-bribery policy in line with the UK Bribery Act? 

If you have answered ‘yes’ to any of the above then you could be at risk and should seek advice where appropriate and ensure you have an up to date anti-bribery policy in place.

Are your current procedures adequate?

The UK Bribery Act requires that organisations re-examine their approach to managing risk as failure to prevent bribery is a new corporate offence that can result in an unlimited fine. 

What are the offences?

There are four offences:

  • bribing another person
  • being bribed
  • bribing a foreign official
  • failure of a commercial organisation to prevent bribery 

The Ministry of Justice has issued a Guidance Document which sets out adequate procedures that can be put in place by commercial organisations wishing to prevent bribery. The procedures comprise six principles including ‘SpeakUp’ or ‘whistleblowing’ reporting lines forming part of an organisation’s bribery prevention policy. 

Which organisations are most at risk?

Organisations with third party relationships such as agents, consultants, distributors, joint ventures and new acquisitions create exposures that can be difficult to assess.  These are the areas where the risk can be the greatest.  There is also an increasing risk of corruption where organisations trade in foreign countries.  InTouch’s SpeakUp whistleblowing hotline service will be of particular benefit to organisations that trade nationally as well as internationally.

For more information about the SpeakUp whistleblowing service click here

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