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New guidance: Sentences for health and safety and other offences to have ‘real economic impact’ under new guidelines

Thursday 14th January 2016


Employers and individuals sentenced for health and safety, corporate manslaughter and food hygiene offences face increased fines as a result of new guidelines requiring sentences to have a ‘real economic impact’.


The guidelines apply to sentences imposed from 1 February 2016, irrespective of when the offence was committed.  Under the guidelines, the courts take into account:


  • The risk, and likelihood of the harm occurring (not just the resulting injury)
  • The culpability of the organisation or individual
  • The organisation’s revenue and profit


As an example, fines for ‘technical’ health and safety breaches which do not result in any injury are likely to start from:


  • £200 for a micro company (turnover up to £2m)
  • £700 for a small company (turnover from £2m to £10m)
  • £3k for a medium company (turnover from £10m to £50m)
  • £10k for a large company (turnover more than £50m)


Fines for flagrant health and safety failures resulting in death are likely to start from £250k for micro companies, £450k for small companies £1.6m for medium-sized companies and £4m for large companies.


Operative date

  • Now



  • Organisations and individuals should consider reviewing their health and safety and other policies, procedures and training to ensure they do not commit an offence and incur the increased penalties



 Atom Content Marketing 2016

Author: Paul Ridehalgh

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