The Senate on Thursday unanimously passed legislation to update and reform the corporate manslaughter law in Massachusetts. The legislation will increase the penalties for corporations convicted of manslaughter, Senator Richard J. Ross (R-Wrentham) announced.
“This legislation has been long overdue,” said Senator Ross. “This bipartisan effort ensures that prosecutors and the Attorney General have the tools to make sure that felonious corporations are held responsible for their crimes.”
The legislation passed by the Senate will raise the fine from $1,000 to no less than $250,000. In addition, corporations face the possibility of corporate debarment for up to 10 years.
“The $1,000 fine for corporations convicted of manslaughter was wholly unacceptable,” Senator Ross stated. “No monetary amount could ever make up for the loss of life, but I am proud the Senate took the steps necessary to hold corporations accountable for their actions.”
The statute instituting the $1,000 fine was signed into law by Governor John Brooks on February 19, 1819 and has not been amended since. Currently, the only penalty faced by corporations is a monetary fine.
The bill will now be sent to the House of Representatives.
Please contact the office of Senator Ross with any questions or concerns at (617) 722-1555 or Richard.Ross@masenate.gov.