Chapter 2: Foundational Materials and Program Infrastructure

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Beyond the Sentencing Guidelines: Governing Directives, Guidelines, and Standards from around the World

While the Federal Sentencing Guidelines’ definition of an effective compliance and ethics program continues to be the most influential set of guidelines regarding how to structure a program, a number of additional, important directives have been promulgated by the US government, multinational organizations (such as the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) and the United Nations), and other governments. Many of these standards build on the guidelines’ definition of an effective program, although, in some cases they also add considerable additional detail to the guidelines’ definition.

What follows is a discussion of some of the more important standards that have been promulgated by government (and other) bodies, beginning with several standards that come from the United States, including those issued by the U.S. Department of Justice and those contained in the Sarbanes-Oxley Act, the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE), and Nasdaq corporate governance rules, and a memorandum promulgated in 2012 by the Department of Justice and the Securities and Exchange Commission. This chapter then discusses the standards contained in the OECD’s Good Practice Guidance on Internal Controls, Ethics, and Compliance; the Adequate Procedures Guidance promulgated by the United Kingdom’s Ministry of Justice pursuant to the UK Bribery Act; the French Competition Authority Guidance; and Mexico’s Model Program for Corporation Integrity. The above is just a sampling of the guidance promulgated by various authorities.

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