RegSol Blog

New Guide to Sanctions under the Administrative Sanctions Regime

December 2019

The Central Bank of Ireland has launched a new guide to highlight certain aspects of the administrative sanctions procedure. The primary focus is on factors which may aggravate or indeed mitigate the breach(es) being examined.

The Guidance document is broken into two sections, the former addressing general principles to be applied including Proportionality, Totality, Sanction Factors and Comparator Cases. The second section sets out 4 sets of factors in detail:

  • Nature, Seriousness and Impact of the breach
  • Conduct of the Entity after the breach
  • Previous Record of the Entity
  • Other General Factors
Commenting on the new guide at its launch on 21st November 2019, Derville Rowland, Director General, Financial Conduct, noted 130 settlement agreements since 2006 and the increasing level detail within those agreements. She also noted that despite same, firms appear to continue to misunderstand sanctioning factors, some expecting reductions of penalties even after obstructionist approaches to settlement. There is absolutely no doubt that a lack of cooperation is an aggravating factor.  

As Ms Rowland concluded: “Let me be very clear that while the Central Bank absolutely expects firms to prevent wrongdoing in the first place, they can undo some of those wrongs by demonstrating a positive culture in terms of how they deal with regulatory breaches. Or put another way, it is never too late to do the right thing.” 

You can access the Guide by clicking here.

By AnneMarie Whelan - Regulatory Consultant