Legal Translations of FCPA Handbooks
There’s a growing demand for the FCPA document translation services especially in light of the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) publishing a second edition of A Resource Guide to the U.S. Foreign Corrupt Practices Act. It has been announced that the 2028 Olympic games would be held in Los Angeles. The last time Los Angeles hosted the Olympics was back in 1984. Yet, even more significant, is the fact that the overarching contract between Los Angeles and the International Olympic Committee includes an anti-corruption provision – the first of its kind in Olympic history. Los Angeles, as the host city, will have a contractual obligation to prevent corruption.
This kind of international anti-corruption measure seems to reflect the recent push of law enforcement to crack down on global corruption overall. In fact, the beginning of 2017 marked the most anti-corruption activity in the United States under the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) on record. In the month of January 2017 alone, six global companies settled FCPA-related offenses and paid an aggregate total of $265 million to the Department of Justice.
The trend of increasing FCPA prosecutions puts a spotlight on the exposure of global corporations to corruption charges. Accordingly, HR professionals of multinational corporations need to ensure that their workforce understands what does, and what does not, constitute a corrupt practice under the FCPA. Legal translation services can help. This article briefly explores FCPA basics, and discusses how legal translation services can be an essential asset to your business.
What are the major components of the FCPA?
The FCPA, officially known as the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act of 1977, is a Federal law meant to make it illegal for companies, and company personnel, to bribe foreign officials to gain influence in the market. One of example of why the FCPA came into being was the Lockheed bribery scandal, in which company officials paid foreign officials to favor Lockheed products. Although bribery may be legal in certain countries, the FCPA was enacted to ensure the public had confidence in the integrity of American businesses.
There are two major parts to the FCPA. The first part makes it a crime to bribe a foreign official. The definition of foreign official for purposes of the statute is broad. It includes doctors of government-run hospitals and employees of international organizations. In addition, a bribe need not be in cash. It can be anything of value.
The second part of the FCPA focuses on making sure a company’s accounting procedures are transparent and consistent with the Securities and Exchange Act of 1934. Companies must keep books and records that accurately reflect the corporation’s transactions, and they must maintain adequate internal accounting controls.
Some recent Dept. of Justice/Securities & Exchange Commission cases within the last few months include the following: Mondelez International, Inc. (formerly Kraft Foods, Inc.) paid $13 million related to FCPA offenses in connection with its violation of internal accounting procedures; Roll-Royce paid $170 million to the U.S. in criminal penalties for participating in a global conspiracy that ran afoul of the FCPA; and Las Vegas Sands Corp. admitted to paying millions to a Chinese consultant, resulting in criminal penalties.
Does your Company provide legal translation of Anti-Corruption Ethics & Compliance Guidelines in the languages of your global workforce?
An increase in corruption investigations means that corporations need to be vigilant in training their employees on the FCPA’s requirements. Multinational corporations need to be particularly careful because of their global reach and multinational workforce.
In that vein, it is not enough that a U.S.-based multinational company distribute FCPA handbooks and other training material in English. To ensure that employees in offices around the globe clearly understand the FCPA’s rules, responsibilities, and obligations, it is vital that those training and reference materials are provided in the employees’ native language.
As the cases discussed above demonstrate, there are stiff penalties for companies that fail to comply with the FCPA. Such penalties can be a major blow to a corporation’s profitability and possibly its ultimate longevity. As such, the need to make sure your workforce is properly trained on the FCPA cannot be overstated. With multinational corporations, FCPA training programs should be translated in each office’s native language.
Our legal translation service can partner with your HR and legal departments to provide accurate, quality translations of your FCPA training and reference materials in any language you need, including Turkish, Arabic, Portuguese, Spanish, Russian, Mandarin Chinese, Polish. Contact our multilingual document translation service to get more details on how you can easily get your FCPA compliance materials translated correctly and efficiently. Getting such complex documents translated for your workforce could mean the difference of millions of dollars to your company’s bottom line.
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