Brazil’s new anti-corruption law, Law No. 12,846/2013, went into effect on 29 January 2014. The law had been proposed by former President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva in 2010, but has only recently become effective.
The law implements the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) Anti-Bribery Convention, and applies to Brazilian companies and companies doing business in Brazil. Like the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act in the United States and the Anti- Bribery Act in the United Kingdom, the Brazilian law has extra-territorial applicability.
If the company benefits from a corrupt act, it can face fines ranging from 0.1 percent to 20 percent of gross revenues. The fines are meant to reflect the financial advantage received by the company from its corrupt act. A company might also lose its opportunity to participate in governmental incentives or to take leases from the Brazilian government. The penalties might apply to affiliated companies, as well as joint venturers or members of a consortium.
A company can mitigate potential fines by showing that it had internal controls and policies designed to prevent improper activities, as well as through self-disclosure.