Saturday, February 1, 2020

Corporate Law Corporate Manslaughter Essay Example | Topics and Well Written Essays - 4000 words

Corporate Law Corporate Manslaughter - Essay Example But only just. The new draft bill on corporate manslaughter is a ghost of what was once proposed. But, for the first time in the United Kingdom, there might now be a chance of prosecuting large companies for killing their workers† (2005). Between 1997 and the 2005 adoption, twelve promises were followed by delays, and five thousand people died as Parliament deliberated (Monbiot, 2005). Home Secretary claims that delays were due to complexity of the law are belied by the rapidity which the Prevention of Terrorism Act was pushed through Parliament, which allows conviction prior to a fair trial (Monbiot, 2005). The law does not allow any individuals to be tried, only companies as a whole to be fined, which when combined with existing law that only direct knowledge and malfeasance on the part of directors can lead to a prosecution means that only small businesses are likely to ever see imprisonments (Monbiot, 2005). â€Å"As directors can still be disqualified and imprisoned for a gross breach of their duty of care towards their shareholders' investments, money in the United Kingdom will remain more valuable than human life† (Monbiot, 2005). Worse, the standard for senior management being tried is grossly minimal: It must be proven that the senior manager â€Å"sought to cause the organisation to profit† for them to be criminally liable (Monbiot, 2005). When seeking to punish a corporation for their malfeasance, particularly in the case of deaths caused by reckless or dangerous working environments, pursuit of profit or easily-avoidable issues such as quality of chemicals or safety controls for machinery, the legal justifications for pursuing action are a few fold. 1. Deterrent. Both the violating company and its staff and other companies and their staffs need to be put on notice that such behavior isn't tolerated. For example: In a civil suit against a company that willfully harmed an innocent, there should be a toll taken for the life of the i nnocent, then a toll taken for the psychological harm dealt to the family and loved ones, then finally a toll taken purely as a deterrent cost. 2. Justice. The person who died deserves their fate to be taken seriously, the harm rectified, amends done (Lewis, 2009). 3. Investigative, amends-based and reparatory. The family that died deserves to have someone make amends for and take responsibility for the action. And when it comes to an organization like a corporation, the investigation can bring to light other violations. It is in the first two realms that the Act is so limited. An unlimited monetary deterrent might be appropriate, but there are so many approaches for the defendant to mitigate the harm that it is unlikely that the fine will ever truly be a serious deterrent to companies with massive operating capital and cash flows (Reid, 2010). When it comes to corporate law, punishments need to be extremely severe because big companies have the ability to protect themselves using t ies to politicians and communities, deep pockets and powerful lawyers. More importantly, individual managers may think that, if a company faces a billion-dollar fine, the worst that will happen is that they will lose their job or will be demoted or punished,

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