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- New franchise law in Belgium – how should your template franchise agreement change?
Belgium has recently implemented a new law which will have direct implications on B2B relationships, in order to address abuse of economic dependence, unfair contractual terms and unfair practices. The aim of the new legislation is to balance the position of the contracting parties, with direct application to franchise agreements.
- New insights of the Belgian Data Protection Authority on cybersecurity and the role of the DPO
In a recent judgment of April 26, 2021, the Belgian Data Protection Authority (“DPA”) fined a financial institution (the “Company”) €100,000 for – amongst other things – failure to provide an adequate level of cybersecurity.
- The DPO and conflicts of interest: What (management) functions are compatible with the DPO?
In a decision of April 28, 2020, the Belgian Data Protection Authority (DPA) imposed a fine of €50,000 in a case where a data protection officer (DPO) also performed an incompatible function.
- Focus falls on corporate vigilance and accountability in Belgium
Lawmakers push for a framework for mandatory value chain due diligence. On 2 April 2021, a legislative proposal entitled “Proposition de loi instaurant un devoir de vigilance et un devoir de responsabilité à charge des entreprises tout au long de leurs chaînes de valeur” or “Wetsvoorstel houdende de instelling van een zorg- en verantwoordingsplicht voor de ondernemingen, over hun hele waardeketen heen” was introduced by members of various political parties before the Belgian Chamber of Representatives (the Belgian Vigilance Proposal). The Chamber of Representatives voted in favour of considering this legislative proposal on 22 April 2021, a few weeks ahead of the 10th anniversary of the unanimous endorsement by the United Nations Human Rights Council of the United Nations Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights (UNGPs).
- COVID-19 - Tax cut for landlords who cancel rent of tenants forced out of business
More than a year into the pandemic, some businesses still have to stay closed because of COVID-19 lockdown measures. Their source of income has dried up, but significant monthly costs, such as rent for business premises, continue to be incurred during the mandatory closure period.
- Dentons COVID-19 Retail Tracker - Belgium
Status – Has any special status been introduced? This overview includes the COVID-19 federal measures implemented in Belgium. Please note that regions, provinces and municipalities can apply additional measures.
- Belgian FSMA publishes final FAQs regarding advertisements for investment instruments
On 1 April 2021, the FSMA published a communication containing its final version of the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) on the requirements applicable to advertisements for investment instruments when they are offered to the public, admitted to trading or distributed to retail clients. Visit the following links for the Dutch and French versions of the FAQs. The English version is currently unavailable. Please see full Publication below for more information.
- ‘Privacy Rulings': legal certainty for your business?
While the Belgian Data Protection Authority (“DPA”) is becoming increasingly active in adjudicating GDPR claims and releasing opinions and recommendations, companies are still finding it difficult to implement the complexities of the GDPR in their businesses.
- Combating economic abuse in a franchise agreement (Belgian B2B law)
Business to business (“B2B”) agreements are often characterized by an economic imbalance between the parties, particularly in the franchise sector where the franchisor is (seen to) impose contractual clauses that are contrary to normal market practices.
- Introduction of a pre-pack insolvency procedure in Belgium
On Friday, 26 March 2021, the Belgian Insolvency Law was amended with the introduction of a pre-packaged insolvency procedure, allowing the debtor to discretely prepare for judicial reorganisation proceedings under the supervision of a judicial administrator. Other noteworthy changes include (i) a lower threshold for the opening of judicial reorganisation proceedings, and (ii) the more flexible appointment of judicial administrators.
- Brussels Brief - European Commission Issues Strategy for “Modernised” Data Protection Rules
The European Commission recently issued a detailed strategy underlining its revision – and modernisation – of EU data protection rules. The strategy document issued on 4 November is essentially a roadmap for EU policy changes in data protection, and follows a public consultation that...
- Spira’s Antitrust Complaint Against De Beers Reaches the End of the Road
The long-running battle, started in 2003, between Belgian rough diamond dealer Spira and diamond producer De Beers came to an end recently. Spira had sought to convince the Belgian Competition Authority (BCA) to intervene against De Beers’ Supplier of Choice (SOC) distribution system. The BCA,...
- Belgian Retail Newsletter: The Legislation On Commercial Establishments Or So-Called “Socio-Economic Permit” Legislation: From Federal To Regional (Part II)
A prudent retailer seeking to open a point of sale in Belgium should check compliance with the legislation on commercial establishments1 which may require a declaration and/or a permit prior to the effective opening date. During various decades, the competence regarding...
- New Belgian Crowdfunding Law: Requirements and Tax Benefits
The Belgian Law of 18 December 2016 on crowdfunding will enter into force on 1 February 2017. The crowdfunding law creates a specific status for equity and debt crowdfunding platforms (referred to as “alternative financing platforms”) and prescribes operating requirements for ...
- Caution with the Models of the “Commission de Bons Offices” when Employing Local Staff in Belgium as a Diplomatic Mission
The Good Offices Commission, better known under its French name “Commission de Bons Offices”, has developed model work rules and a model employment agreement for local staff of diplomatic missions. Although both the Commission and the Protocol Directorate have been recommending the use of these...
- New Belgian Prospectus Law
Proportionate disclosure regime for small scale capital raisings and simplified regime for liability management exercises introduced. The New Prospectus Law has been published in the Belgian Official Gazette. The New Prospectus Law introduces new rules with respect to prospectus...
- Meritas Guide: To Defective Products Litigation in EMEA - Belgium
1. What claims may be brought for liability for defective products? Is liability based on fault/ negligence, or strict liability, or both? Defective product claims may be brought in contract, the tort of negligence, under the Product Liability Act 1991 (“the Act”), which implemented the...
- New Belgian law strengthens the position of dependant enterprises against dominant companies
On 21 March, Belgium adopted amendments to the Code on Economic Law, on the abuse of a significant dominant position in the Belgian market....
- Gun jumping: AG Tanchev tells European Court of Justice that Marine Harvest should receive one fine, not two
There has been an important milestone in the search for more legal certainty in gun-jumping cases: On September 26, 2019, Advocate General (AG) Tanchev issued his opinion in the Marine Harvest case (C-10/18 P) and recommended that the European Court of Justice (CoJ) partially annul Marine Harvest’s ...
- The Belgian Data Protection Authority Publishes Recommendation Concerning Data Processing for Direct Marketing Purposes
On January 17, The Belgian Data Protection Authority (DPA) published Recommendation no 01/2020 providing Guidance on direct marketing. The Recommendation provides a methodology on how to comply with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) when conducting direct marketing....