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Small Business, Enterprise and Employment Act 2015

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This is the original version (as it was originally enacted).

Investigations by Adjudicator

53Investigations

(1)The Adjudicator may investigate whether a pub-owning business has failed to comply with the Pubs Code if the Adjudicator has reasonable grounds to suspect that—

(a)the business has failed to comply with the Pubs Code, or

(b)the business has failed to follow a recommendation made under section 56.

(2)The Adjudicator may not carry out an investigation until the guidance required by section 61(1) has been published.

54Investigation reports

(1)Following an investigation, the Adjudicator must—

(a)publish a report on the outcome of the investigation, and

(b)consider whether to use any of the enforcement powers mentioned in section 55.

(2)An investigation report must, in particular, specify—

(a)any findings that the Adjudicator has made,

(b)any action that the Adjudicator has taken or proposes to take, and

(c)the reasons for the findings and any action taken or proposed.

(3)An investigation report need not identify the pub-owning business concerned.

(4)If a pub-owning business is identified in a report, the business must have been given a reasonable opportunity to comment on a draft of the report before publication.

55Forms of enforcement

(1)If, as a result of an investigation, the Adjudicator is satisfied that a pub-owning business has failed to comply with the Pubs Code, or has failed to follow a recommendation made under section 56, the Adjudicator may take one or more of the following enforcement measures—

(a)make recommendations;

(b)require information to be published;

(c)impose financial penalties.

(2)Where an investigation concerns two or more pub-owning businesses, the Adjudicator may decide—

(a)to take different enforcement measures against different businesses,

(b)not to take any enforcement measures against one or more of the businesses.

56Recommendations

(1)If the Adjudicator chooses to enforce through making recommendations, that means recommending what the pub-owning business should do in order to comply with the Pubs Code, and specifying the time by which the business should do it.

(2)The Adjudicator must monitor whether a recommendation has been followed.

57Requirements to publish information

(1)If the Adjudicator chooses to enforce through requiring information to be published, that means requiring the pub-owning business to publish information relating to the investigation.

(2)The publication requirement is imposed by giving the pub-owning business written notice specifying—

(a)what information is to be published,

(b)how it must be published, and

(c)the time by which it must be published.

(3)The Adjudicator may enforce the requirement to publish information by bringing civil proceedings to obtain an injunction or any other appropriate remedy or relief.

58Financial penalties

(1)If the Adjudicator chooses to enforce through imposing financial penalties, that means imposing a penalty on the pub-owning business of an amount not exceeding the permitted maximum (see subsection (6)).

(2)The financial penalty is imposed by giving the pub-owning business written notice specifying—

(a)the grounds for imposing the penalty,

(b)the amount of the penalty,

(c)the period within which it must be paid, and

(d)how it must be paid.

(3)The pub-owning business may appeal to the High Court against—

(a)the imposition of a financial penalty, or

(b)its amount.

(4)Financial penalties under this section are recoverable by the Adjudicator as a debt.

(5)Financial penalties received by the Adjudicator must be paid into the Consolidated Fund.

(6)The Secretary of State must make regulations—

(a)specifying the permitted maximum, or

(b)specifying how the permitted maximum is to be determined.

59Recovery of investigation costs

(1)The Adjudicator may require a pub-owning business to pay some or all of the costs of an investigation (including any costs incurred in exercising the enforcement powers) if satisfied that—

(a)the business has failed to comply with the Pubs Code, or

(b)the business has failed to follow a recommendation made under section 56.

(2)The Adjudicator may require a person to pay some or all of the costs of an investigation if—

(a)the Adjudicator carried out the investigation as a result of a complaint by the person, and

(b)the Adjudicator is satisfied that the complaint was vexatious or wholly without merit.

(3)A requirement to pay costs is imposed by giving written notice specifying—

(a)the grounds for imposing the requirement to pay costs,

(b)how much is to be paid,

(c)by when the costs are to be paid, and

(d)how they are to be paid.

(4)A person required to pay costs under this section may appeal to the High Court against—

(a)the imposition of the requirement, or

(b)the amount to which it relates.

(5)Costs required to be paid under this section are recoverable by the Adjudicator as a debt.

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