DOJ and SEC Release FCPA Guidance

November 16, 2012
Categories: FCPA

The Department of Justice (DoJ) and the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) revealed the long-awaited Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) Guidance yesterday. The Guidance covers a broad range of topics including definitions of key terms and hypothetical situations outlining whether certain conduct might violate the FCPA. It also describes the elements of an effective compliance program.

While the guidance is not groundbreaking, it does give companies a better sense of what the enforcement authorities consider legitimate versus illegitimate conduct. The hypotheticals are particularly useful in giving companies some practical guidelines to follow. One size does not fit all in terms of compliance; however the Guidance does include several elements of an effective compliance program. These include:

  • Visible commitment from senior management
  • Clear and accessible code of conduct and compliance policies and procedures
  • Adequate oversight and autonomy of compliance team
  • Comprehensive risk assessments
  • Periodic training and certification for employees, agents, and business partners
  • Appropriate and transparent incentives and disciplinary measures
  • Third party due diligence and monitoring
  • Periodic testing and review for continuous improvement 

The Center for Responsible Enterprise and Trade’s ( service, CREATe Leading Practices for Anti-Corruption, can help a company ensure their compliance programs and management systems are up to par. CREATe Leading Practices for Anti-Corruption employs a three-step process including a self-assessment, independent evaluation, and improvement guide for multinational corporations and their suppliers to assess, benchmark, and improve their programs. Fostering and verifying a culture of compliance helps to protect a company’s reputation and bottom-line from corruption or future litigation. 

E-mail us at to learn more about CREATe Leading Practices for Anti-Corruption.

Download the Guidance here

Learn More about Leading Practices for Anti-Corruption here 

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