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More liability imposed on large companies?


​by Łukasz Napiórkowski

8 September 2022

The Government Legislation Centre published on its website a bill amending the Act on Liability of Collective Entities for Punishable Offences ("Liability Act") on 2 September.

The bill amending the Liability Act excludes micro, small and medium-sized enterprises classified according to the criteria listed in the Enterprises Act from the "collective entity" definition. 
This means that the act will apply to large enterprises, which are organisationally and financially able to implement appropriate internal policies.

The bill's main objectives are to:

  • dispense with  a judgment convicting an individual who has committed a crime triggering the liability of a collective entity as a precondition for holding the entity liable; 
  • introduce liability of collective entities for the actions of their bodies (e.g. management board) that may involve a crime;
  • introduce the liability of collective entities for a crime committed by individuals who are related to the organisation but are not members of any of the entity's bodies;
  • make the following distinction as regards liability of a collective entity for actions of an individual other than a member of any of the entity's bodies: liability for fault in selecting an individual who committed a crime, liability for fault in supervising that individual, and liability for organisational fault manifesting itself in such a failure within the collective entity's organisational structure that has enabled or made it easier for the individual to commit a crime;
  • waive liability if despite the existence of a failure the collective entity proves that all bodies and individuals authorised to act for and on its behalf exercised due care required for managing and supervising the entity's activity in given circumstances;
  • replace the current punishing rules and introduce a new maximum fine of 30,000,000 zloty.

The bill being processed is yet another legislative proposal that follows the trend to increase the importance of compliance systems, which limit the liability of enterprises and their management bodies by enabling them to prove that they have exercised due care.

Rödl & Partner experts will keep you up to date on the progress in the legislative work. If you have any questions regarding the implementation of a compliance system in your company, do not hesitate to contact us.


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Łukasz Napiórkowski

Attorney at law (Poland)

Associate Partner

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