Guy Bastable and Tom McNeill write for Law360 on Fatal Accidents and Criminal Liability in the UK

Fatal Accidents and Criminal Liability: Legal Guide

BCL’s Guy Bastable and Tom McNeill give an expert analysis on the key responsibilities for companies in the UK regarding fatal accidents and criminal liability, published in Law360.

An extract from the Law360 article:

“Fatal accidents are usually preventable, which leads to questions of responsibility and criminal liability. This article seeks to explain when organizations and individuals will be found criminally liable, for which offenses and with what sanction.

The legal landscape applicable to fatal accidents has been transformed by the Corporate Manslaughter and Corporate Homicide Act 2007 and the Health and Safety (Offences) Act 2008, and more recently the Sentencing Council’s definitive guideline, “Health and Safety Offences, Corporate Manslaughter and Food Safety and Hygiene Offences,” which together have ushered in a new era of criminal liability for organizations, directors and employees.

Recent years have seen an increased appetite to crack down on all manner of corporate offending, notably with the introduction of “failure to prevent” offenses for bribery and tax fraud which have to some degree adopted the health and safety model. However, the health and safety sphere arguably remains the most comprehensively regulated. Notwithstanding the limitations of the corporate manslaughter offense, organizations that could reasonably have done more to prevent a fatal accident can expect prosecution and significant fines, while culpable individuals risk imprisonment.”

This article was originally published by Law360 on 17th April 2019. To view the full article, visit the law 360 website.

Guy Bastable is a partner at BCL, specialising in corporate crime, financial crime, regulatory investigations, AML/ABC compliance, and Coroner’s inquests. He is recognised as a leading lawyer in the UK by Chambers & Partners and The Legal 500. Guy has particular expertise in crisis management, internal investigations, corporate and director liability, and dispute resolution, focussing on all types of fraud, bribery and corruption, FCA investigations (insider dealing and market abuse), cartels and price fixing, money laundering, corporate manslaughter, health and safety, fire safety, food safety and hygiene, environmental protection, consumer protection, trading standards, and Coroner’s inquests.

Tom McNeill is a solicitor specialising in corporate crime, financial crime and regulatory enforcement. His expertise includes internal investigations, corporate and director liability, all types of fraud, bribery and money laundering, corporate manslaughter, health and safety, environmental protection, fire safety, trading standards, and Coroners’ inquests.  He has conducted privilege-protected internal investigations on behalf of a range of corporate clients in relation to suspected financial crime and following fatal accidents and other serious regulatory breaches.