One keeps hearing of “Bribery Act fatigue”, with the implication that companies and their lawyers either think that the subject was oversold or that the absence of a headline prosecution implies that we can all relax. The sense of urgency has perhaps been diminished also by the early focus on corporate entertainment, which gave rise to much exaggerated fear before apparently dropping off the agenda, and by the government’s public mishandling of the SFO’s future.
All this may have had the effect of diluting a proper sense of urgency amongst companies and their lawyers. The Bribery Act has been in effect only since 1 July and the noises coming from the SFO give warning that it is very much open for business on this subject.
One serious implication is the inter-relation between the UK Bribery Act and the US Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA). Many companies will be subject to both jurisdictions and may face investigations which cross borders. This is the headline subject of a webinar tomorrow, Wednesday 21st September at 9:30am Pacific time / 5:30pm BST which is entitled The Challenges of Cross-Border Regulatory Investigations and which covers also the key differences between ESI management for litigation and an investigation, and how to prepare for and respond to an investigation.
The webinar is given by Deborah Blaxell, Legal Consultant, Epiq Systems, Emma O’Kane, Senior Associate, Eversheds LLP and Mark Surguy, Partner, Eversheds LLP and is co-hosted by the Masters Conference and EMC. These are all topics on which both Epiq and Eversheds speak with the authority of experience, and a webinar is a convenient way of keeping up to date with developments. Registration is here.