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News - 19 May 2011

Bribery Act comes into force July 2011

The Bribery Act is due to come into effect in July 2011.  The Act makes it a criminal offence to give or receive a bribe.

What is Bribery?

The Ministry of Justice generally defines bribery as giving someone a financial or other advantage to encourage that person to perform their functions or activities improperly or to reward that person for having already done so. Therefore, an employee or agent – pays a bribe specifically to get business, keep business, or gain a business advantage for your organisation.

What do you have to do?

To prevent bribery - and have a defence in case a charge of bribery is made against you - you should:

• assess whether your business is at risk and, if so, the level of that risk
• put in place procedures proportionate to the risk you have identified, the scope and size of your business, and the country/ies in which you do business
• show your clear commitment to the prevention of bribery
• use due diligence to assess who you are dealing with and who you appoint to represent you
• communicate, train and raise awareness among employees and business partners
• monitor and review your procedures

However, the Government does not intend that genuine hospitality or similar business expenditure that is reasonable and proportionate be caught by the Act, so you can continue to provide bona fide hospitality, promotional or other business expenditure.

If you need any help and advice for your business concerning the Bribery Act 2011 or financial planning or business advice,  don’t hesitate, contact Lavinia Newman, Stuart Coleman or Tonmoy Kumar NOW to discuss how ABDS can help.

ABDS Chartered Certified Accountants of Southampton.
Tel: 023 8083 6900  E-mail: abds.marketing@netaccountants.net

For a full list of ABDS’ News Briefings go to: www.netaccountants.net

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