What Developments in Western Europe Tell Us about American Critiques of Corporate Criminal Liability

Document Type



The most up-to-date version of this piece can be found in the Duke Law Scholarship


Although corporate criminal liability has been recognized in the United States for nearly a century, contemporary academic commentators have questioned its legitimacy and argued that it is inferior to its alternatives: civil liability for the corporation and/or criminal liability for individual corporate agents. Other academic critics have attacked the present definitions of corporate criminal liability. In other words, although corporate criminal liability has also had its academic champions, it has been under attack in the United States. The situation in Europe poses a sharp contrast.

Date of Authorship for this Version

October 2005