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02.052011

Italian Legislative Decree no. 231/2001 all-round administrative liability of companies

Ten years from the enactment of Italian Legislative Decree no. 231/2001, the liability of companies for crimes committed by employees has not lost its original impetus.

Ten years from the enactment of Italian Legislative Decree no. 231/2001, the liability of companies for crimes committed by employees has not lost its original impetus. Adopting international conventions against corruption, the fines to companies who gain advantage or have an interest in having crimes committed by their employees have overturned one of the suppositions of our judicial system according to which an entity could not be considered the perpetrator of a crime. In addition, the original list of crimes, focussed on violations of correct relations between companies and public administration (from corruption to fraud against the State), has been supplemented with corporate or financial crimes, crimes against individuals, copyright violations, transnational crimes, money laundering, violations of the more severe laws disciplining occupational safety and, in a few days, based on proposal from the Council of Ministers, environmental crimes.

The magistracy seems to be more focussed and to a certain extent more creative in terms of these laws particularly regarding the scope of interested subjects which has been gradually extended to include sole proprietorships and non-profits.

Lastly, the Ministry of Justice is drawing near to submitting a Draft Law to amend parts of Legislative Decree no. 231/2001, the central point will be reinforcement of organisational models – which more and more companies are required to adopt – through a certification mechanism. This Draft Law also recognises for the first time, a specific nature for groups of companies and relations between parent companies and subsidiaries and envisages favourable laws for the establishment of supervisory bodies within small enterprises.

 

 (Source il Sole 24 Ore)