Bribery Act 2010

1. The University expects every business and individual (whether University employee, representative or agent) performing services for it or on its behalf to do so in an honest and professional manner.

Under the Bribery Act 2010, a bribe is a 'financial or other advantage' offered, promised or given to induce a person to perform a relevant function or activity improperly, or to reward them for doing so.

The Act makes it a criminal offence to:

  • offer, promise or give a bribe.
  • request, agree to receive or accept a bribe.
  • bribe a foreign public official to obtain or retain business or a business advantage.
  • (by an organisation) fail to prevent bribery by those acting on its behalf ('associated persons') to obtain or retain business or a business advantage for the organisation.

Small payments made to government officials or others to make something happen, or happen sooner, (commonly called facilitation payments) are likely to be bribes and unlawful under the Act.

Under the Bribery Act, individuals can be prosecuted for accepting bribes or offering bribes. In addition, the University can be prosecuted for failing to prevent bribery committed to obtain or retain business or a business advantage for the University by an employee or other individual or organisation (including University employees, representatives, agents or third parties engaged by the University - see paragraph (2) below) who is performing services for the University.

2. The University does not tolerate any form of bribery, whether direct or indirect, by its agents, consultants, contractors, suppliers, subsidiaries, joint venture partners and any other third parties performing services for or on behalf of the University.

3. All such third parties must comply with the University’s standards with regard to bribery and with the requirements of the Bribery Act 2010, and must ensure that their staff are required to comply with those standards and requirements and receive appropriate training. The University may require a written assurance from a third party of their compliance with the University’s standards and the requirements of the Act, including details of the anti-bribery measures that they have taken.

4. Individuals should note that bribery is a criminal offence in the UK that may result in up to 10 years’ imprisonment and/or an unlimited fine for the individual and an unlimited fine for the organisation on behalf of which the bribery offence is committed.

5. As part of its anti-bribery measures, the University is committed to proportionate, reasonable and bona-fide hospitality and promotional expenditure. The frequency and scale of any hospitality accepted by a third party should in general not be significantly greater than they or the University would be likely to provide in return.

While there is no requirement to report-one-off very small token gifts employees should seek advice from their line manager if:

  • they are offered or receive gifts of higher value; or
  • they receive a succession of small gifts within a short period of time; or otherwise have any concern that there is an intention to influence them to change their behaviour or act improperly.

6. Depending on the circumstances, the appropriate action may be to:

  • accept and keep the gift or hospitality;
  • accept the gift but raffle it among colleagues and donate the money to charity;
  • accept the gift but share it with colleagues;
  • politely decline the gift or hospitality;
  • make clear to the donor that the recipient of the gift will not be involved in decision making relating to business relations between the University and the donor.

Any expenditure which does not comply with this principle must be authorised in advance in writing by email by the appropriate University line manager. It is a personal responsibility of both the individual requesting authorisation by email and the line manager giving his response to that request to retain a copy of all such email correspondence as all individuals may be called by the University to produce evidence of any such requests and the responses given at any time.

7. The University will not conduct business with third parties who do not support the University’s anti-bribery objectives.

8. The University reserves the right to terminate its contractual arrangements with any third party providing services for or on behalf of the University with immediate effect and without compensation for any loss where there is reasonable evidence that they/their staff have committed an act of bribery. Where appropriate, the University will include terms in its contracts with third parties requiring compliance with the University’s standards and with the requirements of the Bribery Act.

9. All those providing services for or on behalf of the University are encouraged to report any suspected bribery to the University to their line manager and the signatory to any legal contract relating to the services in question.

January 2020