Choice of lawyer critical in health and safety investigations — further clarification now provided by the European court
By Michael Hafen
It’s a fact that accidents happen from time to time. In criminal proceedings, the prosecution does not have to prove that an offence was committed deliberately or sometimes even negligently. The exposure of someone to a material risk (i.e. more than merely fanciful or trivial) is enough to secure a conviction.
Fines for prosecutions in the Crown Court can be substantial, especially for larger organisations, with greater attention currently being paid to turnover in the period before an accident when the court decides what will be sufficient to ‘punish’ shareholders.
Generally, for a fatality, a minimum fine of £100,000 can be expected. If there is a corporate manslaughter charge, the sentencing guidelines provide that the fine will be not less than £500,000. Prosecution costs, especially where a not-guilty plea is maintained, can also be a substantial element of any punishment. Prosecution costs and any fine imposed will not be indemnified by either employers’ or public liability insurance. Both affect your bottom line directly…
Click on the link below to read the rest of the Wragge Lawrence Graham & Co briefing.
Sign in or Register to continue reading this article
It's quick, easy and free!
It takes just 5 minutes to register. Answer a few simple questions and once completed you’ll have instant access.Register now
Why register to The Lawyer
In-depth, expert analysis into the stories behind the headlines from our leading team of journalists.
Identify the major players and business opportunities within a particular region through our series of free, special reports.
Receive your pick of The Lawyer's daily and weekly email newsletters, tailored by practice area, region and job function.
More relevant to you
To continue providing the best analysis, insight and news across the legal market we are collecting some information about who you are, what you do and where you work to improve The Lawyer and make it more relevant to you.
News from Wragge Lawrence Graham & Co
News from The Lawyer
Briefings from Wragge Lawrence Graham & Co
Common issues that can arise when signing contracts with overseas companies.
Good news for those selling copies of iconic works as proposed repeal is put on back burner;