Transparency International

This Anti-Corruption Helpdesk brief was produced in response to a query from one of Transparency International’s national chapters. The Anti-Corruption Helpdesk is operated by Transparency International and funded by the European Union

Query

Could you provide information on the legal framework regulating whistleblowing protection in Romania and in Hungary?

Content

  1. Overview of good practice principles in whistleblowing legislation
  2. Whistleblowing protection in Romania
  3. Whistleblowing protection in Hungary
  4. References

Summary

Whistleblowers have a key role in detecting cases of corruption and other illegal behaviour or mismanagement inside public institutions and private companies. It is therefore essential to encourage reporting of wrongdoing by establishing safe, clear, independent and well-known reporting channels that protect whistleblowers against any form of retaliation.

Good practices in this regard equally apply to private and public institutions and include a broad definition of a whistleblower that protects both public and private sector employees against all forms of retaliation and discrimination, clearly communicated internal and external disclosure channels, including anonymous reporting, the right to confidentiality, to receive advice on their rights and to receive appropriate compensation from damages resulting from retaliation.

Romania is considered to have a strong whistleblowing protection legal framework that only applies to the public sector. While Hungary’s new 2014 legislation extends whistleblowing protection in both the private and the public sector, its regime is considered weaker, none the least because it requires corporate compliance officers to inform targets of whistleblower disclosures that they are the subject of a complaint, undermining the credibility of subsequent investigations.

Authors

Marie Chêne, Transparency International, mchene@transparency.org

Date

29/10/2015

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