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Legal and Ethical Violations Risks Seen Rising, But Not Resources to Control the Risk
Date:1/6/2009

MINNEAPOLIS, Jan. 6 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- A survey recently conducted by the Society of Corporate Compliance and Ethics (SCCE) and the Health Care Compliance Association (HCCA) reveals that the declining economy may be increasing the risk of legal and ethics violations in business. In addition, this increased risk is occurring at a time when budgets to manage those risks are expected to at best hold steady, if not decline.

The survey, based on an online questionnaire completed by more than 600 compliance and business ethics professionals, showed that 85% feel that the current economy greatly or somewhat increases the risk of compliance and ethics failures. So pervasive is the perception that only 1% took the contrarian view and felt that the legal and ethics risks might decline in this period, and not one respondent felt that the risk of compliance and ethics failures had greatly decreased.

The fear of increased risk was greatest among those outside of the health care industry, where 48% felt the risks were increasing greatly, compared to 30% for health care compliance professionals. According to Roy Snell, the CEO of both SCCE and HCCA, "The difference is to be expected since health care tends to be less impacted by changes in the economy than business as a whole."

The Society of Corporate Compliance and Ethics and Health Care Compliance Association are non-profit membership organizations serving ethics and compliance professionals across industry and in approximately 25 countries.

Warning of Future Corporate Scandals

In what may be a warning sign of future corporate scandals, despite the increase in perceived risk, survey respondents were far more likely to believe that their budgets and staffing would decline rather than increase. Forty-nine percent felt their budget would stay about the same, and 69% thought the same of staffing. But 36% felt their budgets were
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SOURCE Society of Corporate Compliance and Ethics
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