Legal liabilities for multinationals

The House of Lords has held that a UK-based multinational can be sued in Britain for alleged pollution damage caused by a subsidiary in Africa. UK judges have generally adopted a fairly liberal approach towards allowing cases to be fought before British courts, but Connelly v RTZ Corporation plc and others (House of Lords, 24 July 1997) appears to represent a significant liberalisation of current principles. Major companies with subsidiaries overseas carrying out environmentally dubious practices will need to study the judgement with care.

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