Title: Liability towards collective entities. Comparative study


click here to follow the link


Karkut, Daniel


The purpose of this study was to draw a comparison between regulations about liability towards collective entities applied in four different countries and make attempts to draw some conclusions regarding potential changes in Polish regulations introducing repressive liability towards collective entities into Polish penal law. The first country in Europe, where criminal liability towards collective entities was introduced into its penal law was the Netherlands. The legislator of this country decided to incorporate this institution into the Penal Code. It is worth noticing that the Dutch Penal Code stipulates that not only a natural person has the capacity to commit a crime but a legal entity as well. It is important to remember that limited legal entities are considered to have the capacity to commit crimes in the same way as the entities mentioned above. Dutch regulations concerning the liability towards collective entities enable holding collective entities liable for crimes committed even by the lowest-rank employees in the structure of the collective entity. That kind of legal solution is an effective instrument against delinquency of entities other than people. Introducing repressive liability towards collective entities into the French “New Penal Code” is thought to be the most revolutionary change in French criminal law. The legislator of this country applied the narrower conception of repressive liability towards collective entities than in the Netherlands. The French Penal Code stipulates that a collective entity is subject to liability only for crimes of its bodies that have been committed on its account. German legal doctrine and jurisprudence declared lack of support for the idea of repressive liability towards collective entities. That was the reason, why the legislator of Germany did not decide to introduce this institution into penal law. Natural person is the only entity that can be held liable for crimes in the light of German penal law. Polish regulations about repressive liability towards collective entities are situated not in the Penal Code, but in a separate act, which is “ustawa o odpowiedzialności podmiotów zbiorowych za czyny zabronione pod groźbą kary”. The Polish legislator formulated the definition of the term: “collective entity” classifying “legal entity” and “limited legal entity” as belonging to this category. Collective entities can be punished for crimes of natural person operating in the name of collective entity within the scope of their competence or duty if the unlawful behaviour brought benefits to the collective entity. There are also other statutory requirements regarding liability towards collective entities. The structure of liability towards collective entities in Polish law is considered to be defective and should be improved. This study was designed to show that disadvantages of the Polish model of that kind of liability can be eliminated by drawing on the experience of other countries in the scope of regulations about liability towards collective entities.

Place of publishing:



E-Wydawnictwo. Prawnicza i Ekonomiczna Biblioteka Cyfrowa. Wydział Prawa, Administracji i Ekonomii Uniwersytetu Wrocławskiego


Górnicki, Leonard. Red.

Date issued:


Detailed Type:





oai:www.bibliotekacyfrowa.pl:42786 ; ISSN 2299-8322


pol ; eng

WUL Catalog:

click here to follow the link

Is part of:

click here to follow the link

Is referenced by:


Is replaced by:

Folia Iuridica Universitatis Wratislaviensis

Rights holder:

Copyright by Daniel Karkut

Location of original object:

Library of the Faculty of Law, Administration and Economics

Autor opisu:

WR U/PAdjm ; TK

Object collections:

Last modified:

Jan 27, 2021

In our library since:

Nov 5, 2013

Number of object content hits:

1 994

Number of object content views in PDF format


All available object's versions:


Show description in RDF format:


Show description in OAI-PMH format:





This page uses 'cookies'. More information