Office Of The Director Of Corporate Enforcement

Author:Mr John O'Riordan
Profession:Dillon Eustace

1. Introduction

The aim of the Office of the Director of Corporate

Enforcement (ODCE) is to improve the compliance environment for

corporate activity in Ireland by encouraging adherence to the

requirements of the Companies Acts 1963 to 2006 and bringing to

account those who disregard the law.

2. Background

The conclusions of various review groups, courts, tribunals

of inquiry and parliamentary committees over recent years

revealed evidence that provisions in Irish company law and

other legislation were regularly being breached without the

companies or individuals in question being held accountable. As

a result various innocent parties bore the cost of this

misbehaviour and the associated business risks. Following a

fundamental review, the Irish Government decided that there

were insufficient resources and legal instruments available to

the State to supervise and enforce adherence to the

requirements of company law and that it was necessary to

correct these deficiencies in the public interest.

3. Functions of the Director

These concerns about corporate malpractice led to the

enactment of the Company Law Enforcement Act, 2001 (the

"Act") and the establishment of the Office of the

Director of Corporate Enforcement (the "ODCE") in

November 2001. Under the Act, the Director of Corporate

Enforcement is legally responsible for:

encouraging compliance with company law, and

investigating and enforcing suspected breaches of the


4. Role of the Registrar Of Companies

Under the Act, the Registrar of Companies remains

responsible for:

collecting and making publicly available up-to-date

information on companies registered in Ireland,

encouraging adherence to the filing and registration

requirements of the Companies Acts, and

where necessary, bringing non-compliant companies and

officers to Court.

5. Role of the ODCE

1. Compliance Role

The Director of Corporate Enforcement encourages compliance

with company law requirements by communicating publicly the

benefits of compliance with the law and the consequences of

noncompliance. The strategies employed include:

the publication of information, via the printed and

electronic media, on the legal duties and powers which exist

under Irish company law,

consultations with professional bodies to secure the

conformity of their members with the requirements of the law,


discussions with government and other parties to

facilitate and support the compliance role of the


2. Detection

The Detection...

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