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Using Inquiry Proceedings to Resolve Corporate Disputes
Van Doorne N.V., July 2019

Under Dutch corporate law it is possible for the Enterprise Section of the Amsterdam Court of Appeal to order an inquiry into the policies and affairs of a company and to interfere with the internal organization of such legal entity in order to settle corporate disputes between shareholders, the management and supervisory boards and the works council. The present article creates an overview of these legal proceedings. 1...

Resolutions of the Hungarian data protection authority imposing fines under the GDPR (21 June 2019)
Szecskay Attorneys at Law, July 2019

Below you will find a brief summary of the resolutions of the data protection authority uploaded on their website up until today imposing a fine under the GDPR. 1. Failure to facilitate the exercise of data subjects' rights The data subject wanted to exercise his access right, right to receive a copy, and his right to restrict processing of camera recordings of him at the reception area of a service provider...

Trade and business secrets law enacted
Heuking Kühn Lüer Wojtek, June 2019

It is here. The German Trade and Business Secrets Law (Geschäftsgeheimnisgesetz; GeschGehG) came into effect on April 26, 2019. Companies wishing to ensure protection of their business and trade secrets (such as customer, supplier and staff lists) in the future are required to take and document appropriate non-disclosure measures. This is effective immediately...

Unfounded fixed term ("previous employment")
Heuking Kühn Lüer Wojtek, June 2019

Federal Labor Court (Bundesarbeitsgericht; BAG) dated January 23, 2019 – 7 AZR 733/16 The unfounded limitation of the term of an employment contract, when an employee is employed again by the same employer, is only permissible when and if the application of the prohibition of unfounded fixed-term employment under Sec. 14(2) s. 2 Part-Time and Fixed-Term Employment Law (Teilzeit- und Befristungsgesetz; TzBfG) would be unreasonable for the parties...

European court of justice (ECJ): member states must require employers to systematically record working hours
Heuking Kühn Lüer Wojtek, June 2019

FACTS OF THE CASE Spanish working time law only requires that employers systematically measure their employees’ working hours in case of overtime...

No right of withdrawal after entering into a termination agreement
Heuking Kühn Lüer Wojtek, June 2019

BAG, ruling dated February 7, 2019 - 6 AZR 75/18 A termination agreement under labor law cannot be withdrawn pursuant to consumer protection regulations (Sec. 312(1) in combination with Sec. 312g, Sec. 355 German Civil Code (Bürgerliches Gesetzbuch; BGB)) only because it was concluded in the employee’s private home. In its ruling dated February 6, 2019 (Ref. No...

Joint Controllers - Supervisory authorities publish first sample agreement
Heuking Kühn Lüer Wojtek, June 2019

The topic of “joint controllers” according to Art. 26 GDPR continues to gain momentum. The State Commissioner for Data Protection and Freedom of Information in Baden-Württemberg (LfDI) has now, for the first time, published a sample of an agreement for joint controllers under Art. 26(1) s. 2 GDPR as well as a sample relating to the fulfillment of obligations to inform the data subjects pursuant to Art. 26(2) s. 2 GDPR...

Investing in the Slovenian Automotive Production Industry
Karanovic & Partners, June 2019

This article was written by Igor Angelovski and was originally published in Issue 6.2 of the CEE Legal Matters Magazine. “If you are a company conducting business in the automotive industry with intentions of expanding on the European market, where do you look? The answer may be the Central European country of Slovenia...

Welcome to the Slovenian Legal Market
Karanovic & Partners, June 2019

This article is written byMarko Ketlerand originally published in Issue 6.4 of theCEE Legal Matters Magazine.   After a few troublesome years during the global financial crisis, it seems like Slovenia is on a positive economic route again. On December 14, 2018, S&P Global Ratings affirmed an “A+/A-1” credit rating for Slovenia with a positive outlook...

Use of a Feed-In Premium for Photovoltaic Electricity
Karanovic & Partners, June 2019

The Government of North Macedonia announced an open call for awarding a contract for the use of a feed-in premium for electricity produced in photovoltaic power plants (“PVPPs”) on state land in North Macedonia, with total installed capacity of 35 MW. Two locations are envisaged for construction of the PVPPs – Azambegovo (Sveti Nikole) and Manastirec (Makedonski Brod)...

What to Watch Out For in Case of a Hard Brexit and ZUVIZK
Karanovic & Partners, June 2019

The European Commission consistently emphasises the citizens’ rights and status in its hard Brexit preparations and contingency works. It appealed to EU Member Stats to take a generous approach towards the rights of UK citizens in the EU, given that the UK reciprocates such an approach...

Update regarding video surveillance - only documented purposes justify the means
Heuking Kühn Lüer Wojtek, June 2019

There are hardly any companies that do not use video surveillance systems (CCTV). Such systems record areas such as plant and work facilities or entrance areas. Oftentimes, the video images are not only displayed live on a monitor (“camera-to-monitor system”), but are also recorded automatically for a certain period of time...

Happy Birthday GDPR – One Year On
Shepherd and Wedderburn LLP, May 2019

According to statistics released by the European Commission earlier in 2019, the term “GDPR” amassed more Google searches than either Beyoncé or Kim Kardashian during the month of May 2018. Now that “GDPR” has become a household term, what have we learntin the 12 months since the introduction of the GDPR? 1...

The Perils of Dying Without a Will
Shepherd and Wedderburn LLP, May 2019

Recent research from the insurer Royal London found more than half of the UK adult population has not made a will, and a quarter of those have no intention of making one. Death, it seems, remains something of a taboo subject in the UK. This is in stark contrast to some other countries, such as Mexico, where each year the population celebrates Día de los Muertos, or the Day of the Dead...

The End of the Entrepreneur Visa?
Shepherd and Wedderburn LLP, May 2019

At the end of March, UK Visas and Immigration closed both the Tier 1 (Entrepreneur) and Tier 1 (Graduate Entrepreneur) routes, replacing them with two new visa categories, the ‘Start-up’ and the ‘Innovator’, which are contained within a new Appendix W of the Immigration Rules...

Mergers and Acquisitions: Why Immigration Matters and How to Get it Right
Shepherd and Wedderburn LLP, May 2019

In an increasingly global world, an organisation’s ability to recruit and retain international talent plays an ever important and potentially business critical role. In the UK, the only way in which employers can directly employ many of these talented individuals is through obtaining a sponsor licence from the Home Office...

What Organisations Should be Doing Now to Recruit and Retain EU Workers Post-Brexit
Shepherd and Wedderburn LLP, May 2019

The Brexit referendum vote and its potential impact on free movement has already resulted in many businesses struggling to meet their labour needs; the number of EU migrants has declined markedly at a time when Scotland and the UK is enjoying record levels of employment. As a consequence, immigration has risen to the top of many organisations’ agendas to ensure they can recruit and retain the talent they need to grow their businesses and remain competitive...

Competition Regulator Sharpens Focus on Construction Sector
Shepherd and Wedderburn LLP, May 2019

The Competition and Markets Authority’s (CMA) Chief Executive, Andrea Coscelli raised concerns in April at “seeing a lot of evidence of anti-competitive conduct in the construction industry”, adding the CMA had “already taken a number of cases in this sector…”. Recent enforcement action from the CMA, outlined below, suggests regulatory intervention is only likely to increase...

Regulation of Online Falsehoods: ‘Fake News’ – the UK, Singapore and Europe
Shepherd and Wedderburn LLP, May 2019

‘Fake news’ - information or news that is proven to be either verifiably false or misleading - has become a major, global concern. As news and opinion pieces are increasingly pushed to readers via online and social media channels, the speed of their dissemination has accelerated exponentially, as have the challenges around regulating news and opinion...

Marine Finfish Aquaculture: A New Environmental Framework
Shepherd and Wedderburn LLP, May 2019

The Scottish Government, SEPA and industry have identified significant opportunities for the growth of the finfish aquaculture sector in Scotland. This expansion is an express policy objective of the Scottish Government, and was confirmed through the National Marine Plan published in 2015. Nevertheless, whilst there has been some growth in the sector since the plan’s publication, the sector has yet to realise its full potential...

Brexit Breathing Space for Food Business Operators
Shepherd and Wedderburn LLP, May 2019

Whatever your views on Brexit, the deferment of the UK’s leaving date from the EU provided British industry some welcome breathing space to prepare for Brexit. Given the issues that still divide the two main political parties, the UK may yet leave the EU without a deal on 31 October...

Five Things a Buyer of a Rural Property Needs to Know
Shepherd and Wedderburn LLP, May 2019

Scotland’s countryside offers a vast range of property investment options, from houses and cottages to farms and country estates. However, when buying a rural property it is important to consider various issues that may be taken for granted in the purchase of a property in an urban area. 1...

Ten Things You Need to Know About the Insolvency (Scotland) Rules 2018
Shepherd and Wedderburn LLP, April 2019

On 6 April 2019, Scotland finally saw the introduction of the modernised insolvency rules in the form of The Insolvency (Scotland) (Company Voluntary Arrangements and Administration) Rules 2018 and The Insolvency (Scotland) (Receivership and Winding Up) Rules 2018 (the 2018 Rules). The 2018 Rules will replace the existing Insolvency (Scotland) Rules 1986 (as amended) subject to certain transitional and saving provisions...

Diligence: Early Involvement Pays
Shepherd and Wedderburn LLP, April 2019

Coordinating cross-border due diligence is a key skill that more often than not underpins complex, multi-jurisdictional merger and acquisitions (M&A) and private equity (PE)-led transactions. Where due diligence really adds value is in the early stages of the transaction, when local knowledge and expertise are vital to understanding the context of data room information...

Labour Code Changes Due to the GDPR
Szecskay Attorneys at Law, April 2019

Due to the GDPR, the Hungarian Parliament passed a law on 1 April concerning changes to a number of acts containing data protection provisions. The Hungarian Labour Code is one of the laws that has been changed. The new law is expected to be published soon and its rules, which affect quite a number of data controllers, will become applicable on the 15th day following their publication. It can be expected that the new rules will become effective around 1 May...

Stopping Issues from Becoming Crises: Best Practice for Food Business Operators
Shepherd and Wedderburn LLP, April 2019

The presence of a small amount of undeclared sesame in a particular product may seem trivial but, for those who are allergic, it can provoke a major reaction. Such was the predicament faced by Pret a Manger in July 2016, following the death of Natasha Ednan-Laperouse that same month due to the undeclared presence of sesame in a Pret baguette...

Worker Participation of the Works Council in Employee Survey
Heuking Kühn Lüer Wojtek, April 2019

The recent decision of the FOPH (FOPH, decision of 11.12.2018 - 1 ABR 13/17) gives additional grounds for further clarifying the practical question of to what extent the conduct of an employee survey is subject to worker participation by the works council. The Respondent - a parent company of a postal and logistics company - has been carrying out an annual Group-wide employee survey since 2007 using a standardized electronic questionnaire...

Age Limit - Postponing the Termination Date
Heuking Kühn Lüer Wojtek, April 2019

Federal Labor Court, ruling of 19 December 2018 - 7 AZR 70/17 The provision of Sec. 41 p. 3 Social Code (SGB) VI allows employers and employees to postpone the termination of the employment relationship upon reaching the regular retirement age of the employee. According to a ruling of the German Federal Labor Court (BAG) of 19 December 2018 (Ref. 7 AZR 70/17), this regulation is compatible with higher-ranking law...

Leave Reduction During Parental Leave Period Not in Breach of European Law
Heuking Kühn Lüer Wojtek, April 2019

FOPH of March 19, 2019 - 9 AZR 362/18 The statutory leave entitlement according to Sec. 1, 3 Federal Leave Act (BUrlG) also exists for the period of parental leave, but may be reduced by the employer pursuant to Sec. 17 (1) (1) Federal Parental Allowance and Parental Leave Act (BEEG). This requires a legal declaration completed upon receipt aimed at reduction. Sec. 17 (1) BEEG is in line with EU law...

Participation of the Representative Body for Severely Disabled Persons During the Dismissal Process
Heuking Kühn Lüer Wojtek, April 2019

(FOPH, Ruling of 12.13.2018, 2 AZR 378/18) In a very helpful decision for the practice, the FOPH has commented on the procedure for consulting with the representative body for severely disabled persons before dismissals. It is sufficient for the employer to consult the representative body for severely disabled persons before notice of dismissal in accordance with the basic principles applicable to the participation of the works council pursuant to Sec...

European Whistleblowing Directive will be Effective as of April 2019
Heuking Kühn Lüer Wojtek, April 2019

At European and national level, discussions have been going on for years on how best to protect the so-called whistleblowers from being victims of retaliation measures by those whose actions they have uncovered. Whistleblowers are persons who, as "insiders" (such as employees) disclose dubious practices of the institutions they serve. Here we think first and foremost of persons such as Edward Snowden, whose disclosures were directed against state measures...

Changes to Trademark Law from 16 March 2019
Wardynski & Partners, April 2019

An amendment to the Industrial Property Law took effect on 16 March 2019, transposing into Polish law the Trademark Directive (2015/2436). The amendment is not revolutionary but will certainly have huge practical implications. The changes have been made primarily to better align the EU and national trademark systems...

Standardization of the Level of Administrative Fines under the GDPR?
Heuking Kühn Lüer Wojtek, April 2019

The administrative fines that have been imposed by the different European supervisory authorities since the GDPR took effect vary enormously. While the highest administrative fines imposed by the German authorities to date have been EUR 20,000 and EUR 80,000 and have therefore remained well below the possible maximum fine of EUR 20 million or 4 % of worldwide annual turnover, other countries’ supervisory authorities have already delivered higher fines...

Change is Coming to the Landed Estates in Scotland
Shepherd and Wedderburn LLP, April 2019

TheScottish Land Commission recently published their reportinto what it describes as the issues associated with largescale and concentrated land ownership in Scotland. The report draws a number of conclusions and makes recommendations to the Scottish Government about potential future legislative change that might have far-reaching consequences for rural land ownership...

Luxembourg VAT Updates
ALTIUS/Tiberghien, April 2019

Brexit Newsletter from AED The Registration Duties, Estates and VAT Authority (AED) has issued a Newsletter informing all taxpayers of VAT related consequences of a British exit from the European Union (EU) as from 29 March 2019, (in case no withdrawal agreement is agreed between the EU and the United Kingdom (UK). Click here to access to the AED Newsletter. In the meantime, the date of the withdrawal of the UK from the EU has been postponed until 12 April 2019...

Consent for the Use of Cookies
Heuking Kühn Lüer Wojtek, April 2019

Even before the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) came into force, there were discussions as to whether the use of tracking cookies, which make it possible to analyze the usage and browsing behavior of a user on the Internet and use it for interest-based advertising, requires prior consent (opt-in) of the user or whether a dissent solution (opt-out) is sufficient. The German data protection authorities are of the opinion that users must give their consent...

Personal Data: Comprehensive Right to Information of the Employee - A Threat to the Anonymity of Whistleblowers?
Heuking Kühn Lüer Wojtek, March 2019

The Regional Labor Court (LAG) of Baden-Württemberg, in its ruling of December 20, 2018 (Ref. 17 Sat 11/18), granted an employee a comprehensive right to information against his employer with regard to all personal data collected about his person. The right to information was explicitly confirmed in relation to personal data resulting from internal investigations and data from potential whistleblowers...

Personal Data: Comprehensive Right to Information of the Employee - A Threat to the Anonymity of Whistleblowers?
Heuking Kühn Lüer Wojtek, March 2019

The Regional Labor Court (LAG) of Baden-Württemberg, in its ruling of December 20, 2018 (Ref. 17 Sat 11/18), granted an employee a comprehensive right to information against his employer with regard to all personal data collected about his person. The right to information was explicitly confirmed in relation to personal data resulting from internal investigations and data from potential whistleblowers...

Hitachi Zosen Inova AG Ltd v John Sisk + Son Ltd – The Same Disputes, But Different?
Shepherd and Wedderburn LLP, March 2019

In a recent decision by the Technology and Construction Court (TCC), Judge Stewart-Smith has clarified the position when determining whether two adjudications are “the same or substantially the same” when a party challenges jurisdiction under Para 9(2) of the Scheme for Construction Contracts. He stated that thedecisionreached in the first adjudication must be considered as well as the disputesreferredto adjudication in each...

Entry into Force of the Law Introducing One Additional Day of Annual Paid Leave and One Additional Public Holiday
Arendt & Medernach, March 2019

Today, on the 27th March 2019, the bill of law 7399 amending articles L. 232-2 and L. 233-4 of the Labour Code as well as article 28-1 of the amended law of 16th April 1979 establishing the general status of public servants (hereinafter the "Law") was passed by the Luxembourg Chamber of Deputies. The leitmotif underpinning the Law is the same as that for the parental leave reform in 2016, namely enabling employees to achieve a greater balance between their private and professional lives...

German Bundestag Adopts New Law for the Protection of Trade Secrets
Heuking Kühn Lüer Wojtek, March 2019

Companies will need to take appropriate steps in the future to protect their secrets. The new law on the protection of trade secrets places greater demands on the sensitivity of secrets to this extent. Whistleblowers can also reveal trade secrets with impunity - one more reason to set up a whistleblower hotline. Reverse engineering will be a permissible way of acquiring a trade secret in the future...

Having the Last Word – Finality Clauses in Leases
Shepherd and Wedderburn LLP, March 2019

No-one enters into a lease of commercial property looking for a fight, but experience has shown it is prudent for the parties to provide for what will happen if a dispute arises. It is common for commercial leases to contain provisions for alternative dispute resolution, by referring any matter to an arbitrator or expert for determination. Such clauses invariably provide that the decision of such arbitrator or expert will be "final and binding on the parties"...

Are Professional Athletes Employees?
Shepherd and Wedderburn LLP, March 2019

A number of cases have looked at worker status in recent years, focused mostly around the ‘gig economy’ with claims against companies including Uber and Deliveroo. The gig economy typically involves individuals working in temporary positions in the service industry, such as food delivery or private couriering. The sharp increase in the number of people working in this sector has led to a huge shift in the cultural and business environment...

Private Use of Company Email Accounts by Employees
Heuking Kühn Lüer Wojtek, March 2019

On 13 March 2019, the State Commissioner for Data Protection and Freedom of Information in Baden-Württemberg (LfDI BaWü) published the latest version of his guidebook on employee data protection. In this brochure, the LfDI BaWü offers an insight into his work and explains his opinion regarding the various points of view surrounding employee data protection...

Compulsory Sales Orders: Threat or Opportunity for Vacant or Derelict Land?
Shepherd and Wedderburn LLP, March 2019

Many communities in Scotland are all too aware of the problems associated with living next to land or buildings that are lying vacant or derelict, particularlyin urban areaswhere neglected places are often a magnet for anti-social or criminal behaviour,becomingdumping grounds for rubbish,attracting vermin and generally posing a threat to the safety or health of those living or working in the vicinity...

Temporary Permissions Regime and the Brexit Deadline
Arendt & Medernach, March 2019

We would like to kindly remind you that from 7 January 2019 to 28 March 2019, the Financial Conduct Authority ("FCA") online system ‘Connect’ is open for EEA-based firms and fund managers of EEA-domiciled investment funds (UCITS and AIF) currently passported into the UK to notify the FCA about their intention to participate in the temporary permissions regime (“TPR”)...

Counting the Cost of Imported Goods in a No-Deal Brexit
Shepherd and Wedderburn LLP, March 2019

One of the key issues raised consistently in the discussions around a no-deal Brexit is the impact it would have on the customs duties payable on goods that are imported in to the UK. Whilst MPs have now voted against a no-deal Brexit, this does not change the legal position – that unless a deal is agreed, there will be a no-deal Brexit, (or no Brexit at all)...

Finance Bill 2019: CIT Reduction and Optional Extension of Interest Limitation Rules on Fiscal Unity Level
Arendt & Medernach, March 2019

The most important corporate tax measures concern the reduction of the maximum corporate income tax (“CIT”) rate and the introduction of the option provided by the anti-tax avoidance directive (“ATAD”)[1]. This allows for the application of the interest limitation rules at the level of a fiscal unity: For the time being CIT is levied at a rate of (i) 15% in case the net profits do notexceed EUR 25,000 and (ii) 18% in case the net profits exceed EUR 30,000...

CJEU Clarifies Abuse and Beneficial Ownership Concepts under the Parent Subsidiary and Interest/Royalty Directive
Arendt & Medernach, February 2019

In this context, the judgements provide useful guidance on the concepts of abuse and beneficial ownership. Abuse concept According to the CJEU, it is settled case-law that there is, in EU law, a general legal principle that EU law cannot be relied on for abusive or fraudulent ends...

Legal Challenges to UK Public Bodies: A Quick Guide
Shepherd and Wedderburn LLP, February 2019

Public bodies in the UK (government departments, regulators, local authorities etc.) are legally accountable for the decisions that they make. But what does that mean in practical terms to someone looking to raise a legal challenge to a particular decision? This short blog post provides some very high level guidance in FAQ form. Q. If I think a decision is wrong, am I able to raise a legal challenge against it? A. Maybe...

 

 

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