The Corporate Manslaughter and Corporate Homicide Act 2007
The Corporate Manslaughter and Corporate Homicide Act 2007 came into force on 6 April 2008 across the UK. This Act sets out a new offence for convicting organisations where a gross failure in the way activities are managed or organised results in a person's death and which amounts to a gross breach of duty of care.
The new offence does not replace requirements under the Health and Safety Act 1974 and is specifically linked to existing health and safety requirements. However, it will make it easier to prosecute organisations whose gross negligence has led to a death. It is important for all entities to ensure that their safety systems are adequate and properly enforced.
The first prosecution under the Act was reported in April 2009. It is expected to be the first of many.
At the time that this provision was brought into force, the Faculty of Finance and Management published an article giving guidance on complying with the new legislation. This guidance is still current in May 2009 and is available to Faculty members.