Close X
Attorney Spotlight

How did Sylvia Yi's previous work at the Department of Homeland Security prepare her for working with government contractors at Bass, Berry & Sims? Find out more>


Close X


Search our Experience

Experience Spotlight

On December 1, 2016, Parker Hannifin Corporation and CLARCOR Inc. announced that the companies have entered into a definitive agreement under which Parker will acquire CLARCOR for approximately $4.3 billion in cash, including the assumption of net debt. The transaction has been unanimously approved by the board of directors of each company. Upon closing of the transaction, expected to be completed by or during the first quarter of Parker’s fiscal year 2018, CLARCOR will be combined with Parker’s Filtration Group to form a leading and diverse global filtration business. Bass, Berry & Sims has served CLARCOR as primary corporate and securities counsel for 10 years and served as lead counsel on this transaction. Read more here.

Close X

Thought Leadership

Enter your search terms in the relevant box(es) below to search for specific Thought Leadership.
To see a recent listing of Thought Leadership, click the blue Search button below.

Thought Leadership Spotlight

FCPA: 2016 Year in Review & 2017 Enforcement Predictions

A review of trends and developments in FCPA as well as a look ahead into what to expect for 2017. This report aims at providing corporate leaders and companies with the knowledge they need to comply with the FCPA and avoid litigation in 2017.

Read now

U.K. Bribery Act's Broad Reach Will Come Into Force July 1


June 27, 2011

Key Points:

  • U.S. companies that have a demonstrable business presence in the United Kingdom need to ensure they are in compliance with the U.K. Bribery Act as this far-reaching law comes into force on July 1, 2011.
  • The U.K. Bribery Act is more stringent than the U.S. Foreign Corrupt Practices Act ("FCPA") in several key respects and imposes strict corporate criminal liability for companies whose "associated persons" (including employees and agents) violate the U.K. Bribery Act, regardless of where in the world the violation occurs.
  • If your company carries on business in the United Kingdom, and you have not already implemented the "adequate procedures" that can provide an affirmative defense to strict corporate criminal liability under the U.K. Bribery Act, you should do so soon.

After several months of delay, the U.K. Bribery Act (the "Bribery Act") will come into force on July 1, 2011. The Bribery Act has significant ramifications for U.S. companies carrying on business in the U.K. – in some cases, compliance with the FCPA is insufficient to avoid criminal corporate and individual liability under the Bribery Act.

Key differences between the Bribery Act and the FCPA include:

  1. The Bribery Act explicitly provides for strict criminal liability for companies whose "associated persons" (including employees and agents) violate the Bribery Act. The Bribery Act provides for an affirmative defense for companies that can demonstrate that they implemented "adequate procedures" to prevent bribery.
  2. The Bribery Act specifically prohibits bribery of private citizens, as well as government officials. Though U.S. enforcers increasingly are prosecuting bribery of individuals who are not government officials (i.e., private sector or commercial bribery) through the use of the U.S. Travel Act, wire fraud statutes, or the application of the FCPA’s books-and-records provisions, the FCPA does not directly prohibit commercial bribery.
  3. The Bribery Act contains no exception for "facilitation payments," payments to foreign officials for "routine governmental actions" that are permissible under the FCPA.
  4. The Bribery Act provides for imprisonment of individuals for up to 10 years per violation, rather than the five years per violation under the FCPA.

The U.K. Ministry of Justice ("MOJ") recently published guidance interpreting "adequate procedures," a key term in the Bribery Act. Though the MOJ’s guidance, available here, is not intended to be a "one-size-fits-all document," it provides useful principles and illustrative examples that can help guide companies in tailoring their compliance programs to their size and risk profiles. Conducting an efficient risk assessment can be a crucial first step in applying the MOJ’s guidance. A well-tailored risk assessment with an emphasis on common corruption pitfalls can maximize the effectiveness of limited corporate compliance budgets.

Many observers have also focused on the hospitality section of the MOJ's guidance. The MOJ listed a number of factors that it will consider when determining whether hospitality rises to the level of a violation of the Bribery Act, including "the type and level of advantage offered, the manner and form in which the advantage is provided, and the level of influence the particular foreign public official has over awarding the business."

The U.K. Serious Fraud Office and the Director of Public Prosecutions also have published joint guidance interpreting key terms in the Bribery Act.

For more information or assistance regarding foreign anti-corruption compliance, international investigations and international trade, please feel free to communicate with your regular contacts at Bass, Berry & Sims PLC, or the attorneys listed. For more information and resources on this topic, please visit Bass, Berry & Sims PLC's webpage on FCPA.

Related Professionals

Related Services


Visiting, or interacting with, this website does not constitute an attorney-client relationship. Although we are always interested in hearing from visitors to our website, we cannot accept representation on a new matter from either existing clients or new clients until we know that we do not have a conflict of interest that would prevent us from doing so. Therefore, please do not send us any information about any new matter that may involve a potential legal representation until we have confirmed that a conflict of interest does not exist and we have expressly agreed in writing to the representation. Until there is such an agreement, we will not be deemed to have given you any advice, any information you send may not be deemed privileged and confidential, and we may be able to represent adverse parties.