Business ethics and anti-corruption regulation and enforcement are at the forefront of the issues facing all businesses today. Standards have changed significantly in recent years. An ethical failure could result in significant civil and criminal sanctions for businesses, and even imprisonment for individuals. Our business ethics and anti-corruption practice helps clients to navigate national and international anti-corruption, regulatory and compliance issues and investigations wherever they arise.
We advise corporates, financial institutions and senior executives extensively on the implications of international business ethics and anti-corruption best practice standards, wider developments in the legislative and corporate landscape, and in relation to internal and government-led investigations. A particular focus of our advice has been on the concept of adequate procedures and the broader issues of risk management and compliance.
The unprecedented level of co-operation among international enforcement authorities requires clients to adopt a coordinated, multinational approach to corruption issues. We work closely with colleagues across our global platform of more than 50 offices across the world in relation to issues arising under the UK Bribery Act, US Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (“FCPA”) and other international and domestic anti-corruption frameworks, including in China, Europe and Asia Pacific, in Russia and across Africa. We are well-placed to address complex business ethics and anti-corruption issues that arise for UK and multinational clients.
Our team includes lawyers who have previously held positions in some of the world’s key regulatory bodies. In the UK, members of the team have worked at the forefront of anticorruption policy and enforcement at the Serious Fraud Office. Our colleagues in the United States include a number of lawyers with significant experience of working within government agencies, including the former Acting Chief and Principal Deputy Chief for Litigation of the Fraud Section of the U.S. Department of Justice, Criminal Division.
A number of our business ethics and anti-corruption lawyers have significant experience of implementing and monitoring compliance programmes and advising on investigations during secondments at major corporates.
We are well versed in the principal international frameworks containing human rights requirements for businesses, including the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises, the IFC Performance Standards, the Equator Principles and ISO 26000. We advise clients in various contexts and industry sectors on corporate social responsibility issues, including human rights due diligence and assessments, compliance with international and national human rights laws, corporate reporting requirements and related strategic and risk management issues. We can also assist clients in handling human rights related complaints and investigations and in litigation before local courts and international tribunals.
Our areas of work include
- Anti-corruption training
- Compliance and integrity programmes
- Compliance counselling
- Criminal risks
- Due diligence
- Risk assessment
- Legal 500 UK, London: Regulatory Investigations and Corporate Crime: Advice to Corporates, The Legal 500, 2022