If your business wants to take advantage of the leniency programme, you should contact CCCS either in person, over the phone, by email, or using our online form. The procedure for obtaining leniency will generally begin with an anonymous initial contact by the business or its lawyers to determine whether leniency is still available and whether there are already prior leniency applicants. Following this, there are two options a business may take, the first being to apply directly for leniency or the second being to apply for a leniency marker. Whichever option a business takes will often depend on the level of information or evidence it possesses.
The initial contact made by your business may be anonymous if all it wishes to find out is if leniency is available. If your business provides a general description of the industry or market, CCCS officers will be able to inform you if there is already a prior application for leniency. However, for the leniency application to be recorded and proceeded with, at a minimum, the business’ name and a clear description of the cartel conduct must be given to CCCS. You are urged to provide CCCS with this information as soon as possible as there are greater benefits in being the first to apply for leniency.
Application for leniency – where business already has evidence and information relating to the cartel
For the leniency to be granted, you will need to provide your business’ identity, details of other business(es) or person(s) involved in the cartel, a description of cartel activities and all other information and evidence relating to the cartel that your business has in its possession at the time of the application.
Upon receipt of the leniency application, CCCS will review your application including assessing your business’ eligibility. CCCS will usually arrange to have a meeting with you to get more information on the cartel, and the list of evidence that you may have.
You will be informed once we launch an investigation, and CCCS will require your cooperation and your business’ cooperation throughout the course of investigations. You can be assured that CCCS will endeavor, to the extent that is consistent with its obligations to disclose or exchange information, to keep the identity of all leniency applicants confidential throughout the course of investigations, until the written notice under section 68(1) is issued.
Application for leniency marker – where business has not compiled all evidence and information relating to the cartel
CCCS recognises that sometimes when a business decides to apply for leniency, it may not be in possession of all the information and evidence of the cartel that would otherwise be required by CCCS to grant them leniency. CCCS provides a marker system to address this situation.
If your business wishes to apply for leniency but it is not in possession of all the information and evidence pertaining to the cartel at the time of the application, your business may nonetheless apply for a marker to secure a position in the leniency queue. To secure a marker you will be required to provide the name of your business and a description of the cartel conduct in sufficient detail to allow CCCS to determine if any other business has applied for immunity or a reduction of up to 100% of the financial penalties for similar conduct. If no other business has applied for leniency, then your business will have secured a marker for immunity or reduction of up to 100% of the financial penalties in the leniency queue.
The marker will protect your business’ place in the queue for immunity or reduction of up to 100% of the financial penalties for a limited period of time, as specified by CCCS, while your business gathers the necessary information and evidence that is required to perfect the marker. Once your business perfects the marker within the deadline set by CCCS, your business will be granted either immunity or up to 100% reduction of the financial penalties.
If your business fails to perfect the marker within the deadline, then an opportunity will be given to other businesses in the leniency queue to perfect the marker and secure immunity or a reduction of up to 100% of the financial penalties.