Harvey Lawyers

Corporate Law


Over the last years, especially at the beginning of 2020, unprecedented changes have occurred such as financial crisis at a global scale, continuous regulation updates, advancement in technology, exposure to new risks, globalisation, adaptation to seek for new talent models and needs, etc. All these disrupting changes have forced to every single company to evolve, trying to adapt to the present times, implementing different models of business both local and international, and putting the focus on doing less with more, without sacrificing quality. In-house legal departments, as well as law firms specialised in corporate law, have also been an active part of this change. This is why in Harvey Lawyers & Associates we understand the constantly evolving needs your company may require, whether it is a small company operating locally, or your business has a presence in various countries. We are proud to be a part of a solid network of collaborating law firms all over Spain and Europe to meet all the aspects your company or business is willing to cover, from Compliance bespoke programs to labour or tax law advice.

Services:

  • Compliance program
  • Tax law advice
  • Arrangement with creditors
  • Labor law advice
  • Contracts
  • Brand or patent registration
  • Copyright issues 
  • Intellectual and industrial property

Services

Corporate Compliance Program


Our experts will design a bespoke program for your company by analyzing thoroughly all the potential risks and misconducts your business and your employees are exposed to.

The Compliance Program is not only a lifeline in a world full of regulations but a statement of intent of transparency in business, good governance and a quality distinction before the market and the consumers for your company. On the other hand, the lack of a Compliance Program in your company can lead to significant fines or sanctions, loss of reputation and in some cases, judiciary intervention or its closure.

As for today is not mandatory to count with a Program (in Spain), but given the disrupting changes on business models, it is highly recommended.

* The Corporate Compliance Program is created and implemented within the regulations, laws and guidelines of the Spanish legal system.

Compliance FAQ's

FAQ's


The term “compliance” is set to define the risk of a corporation to punishment sanctions, fines, financial losses and/or reputational damages by violating laws, regulations and ethical codes that may apply to its activity. In Spain, the criminal liability of a company was implemented in the Spanish Criminal Code by rule 1/2015 (March 30th). A compliance program (CP) is a set of internal policies for the Company or corporation to comply with laws, rules and other regulations. In other words, it is an instrument to effectively prevent any risks that may arise, thus the Company/corporation can avoid reputational damage, fines and sanctions.

At present, it is not mandatory for corporations in Spain to have a CP, except for the ones operating in the stock market. Nevertheless, top companies in Spain have a CP and it is a requirement to count with one in order to work for/with them. Also, it is important to know that any Company with business relations in the UK or the USA, is bound to own one since it can be prosecuted from those countries. On the other side, not having a compliance program, may lead to criminal liability.

The corporation may be facing serious punishments when a criminal offence is committed and as a result, it has obtained direct or indirect benefit. This can include:

1) Severe economic fines/sanctions / 2) Dissolution / 3) Business closure, up to five years / 4) Prohibition to develop any commercial activity related to the offence committed, up to five years. / 5) Several disqualifications: Administration contracts, obtaining grants and public assistance, taking advantage of social security policies or tax incentives. / 6) Judicial intervention, up to five years.

The benefits are triple: a) Within the Justice Administration and in Court: the full exemption for punishment sentences, or when applicable, the attenuation on the sanction/fine. b) Within the market: competitiveness and a better reputation, given it is an asset that allows business in other countries and markets. c) Within the customers: it projects transparency and business ethics. In other words, compliance culture.

It will incur as long as it obtains a direct or indirect benefit from the committed offence. There are 2 ways in which can happen: by transferring the liability from the individual to the company (own context), and when the own company is considered the offender. The main difference will remain in whom has the burden to prove if the compliance program has been effective and useful, the public prosecutor or the own company. In both cases, if we want to opt for the exoneration or the fine attenuation, it is a must to have a CP.

At present in Spain, there are 26 types of felonies/offences, of which the most important ones include:

  • Money laundering
  • Bribery
  • Corruption of government officials and civil servants
  • Illegal financing of political parties
  • Terrorism financing
  • Criminal offences related to industrial and intellectual property rights, the market and consumers (deceptive or misleading advertising, fraud advertising, inside trading, traffic of influence…)
  • Fraud
  • Computing damage
  • Stealing and revealing secrets
  • Offences against the Public Estate (tax evasion, deceptive accounting…)
  • Offences against the environment and/or natural resources
  • Offences against the rights of employees
  • Offences against the town and country planning
  • Offences against foreigner citizens’ rights

At present, we count on UNE 19601 since May of 2017 to define the CP management and its requirements. However, it is not mandatory to obtain the certificate to attest the effectiveness of the program, but it can be advisable.

Having a certificate compliance program is not a full guarantee of its effectiveness, but having a bespoke program for each corporation will be, mainly because of the personalised risks’ analysis conducted, and the implemented protocols according to its necessity and urgency.

The Compliance Officer is the individual behind the management and supervision of the CP and the whistleblowing channel. Depending on the needs of each corporation, the Compliance Officer can be internal or outer staff, or even represented by a group of qualified workers. The main characteristics defining a Compliance Officer are:

  • Independency
  • Integrity
  • Access to every level of the corporation/company
  • Specific remuneration for his/her tasks.

We are specialised in Criminal Law and Corporate Compliance, counting with experts offering a permanent and qualified attention to our clients, based on trust and discretion.

In order to elaborate a Compliance program, we thoroughly analyse your company structure seeking for risk areas and potential breaches within Spanish Criminal Law, aiming to compose a bespoke plan …

Furthermore, we work closely on a daily basis with experts from other related areas (data protection, employee safety policies…) to complete the CP, and we offer a whole service until the program is duly implemented, including the staff training. We do offer also auditing services for existing programs.

Services

Tax law advice


The Spanish tax law system is, arguably, the most challenging issue -as an individual or as a company owner- you are going to face. This is due to the Spanish growing economy in the past years, with increasing regulations to maintain its status in accordance with European standards. With a tax system becoming more and more complex every year, you must count on credited tax law experts that will help you and your company develop and grow your business safe and securely, as far as you want.

Services

Arrangement with creditors


Unfortunately, after every economic crisis, hundreds of businesses go to an arrangement with creditors before the full bankruptcy. It is probably one of the most unpleasant experiences as a business owner you can go through, seeing how the assets of your company are being settled in third party hands.

We, as specialised lawyers in arrangement with creditors, take good care of your interests and assets, in the lookout for the administration’s performance at every step.

Contact

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