On 19 December 2018, the Council of the EU and the Parliament reached an agreement on the proposal for a directive on “preventive restructuring frameworks, second chance and measures to increase the efficiency of restructuring, insolvency and discharge procedures”. The main objective of the directive is to enhance the rescue culture across EU. To do so, each Member State will be required to introduce into its substantive law effective preventive restructuring frameworks in order to help debtors experiencing financial difficulties to restructure at an early stage, with the objective to avoid insolvency and to improve the return for the creditors. 

Since the late 1990s, the Belgian legislator has been referring to the notion of ‘durable medium’ in order to indicate a bearer of information. The concept of ‘durable medium’ originally stems from European consumer law[1]. However, various definitions as well as different use cases, often in combination with a link to paper,  could be found spread across a variety of Belgian laws.

The Law of 20 September 2018[2], harmonising the concept of durable medium, should end this double shortage of legal coherence, with regard to the definition of a durable medium on the one hand and regarding its coexistence with paper on the other.

It happens that traders, operating in one EU Member State, block or limit access to their websites and applications by customers from other member states who would like to engage in cross-border transactions (a practice called ‘geo-blocking’). This, together with the practice of traders applying different general conditions of access to their goods and services or with regard to the means of payment, based on the customer’s nationality, place of residence or place of establishment, forms a barrier to the free movement of goods and services throughout the EU internal market.

These practices, if not objectively justified[1], are forbidden as from 3 December 2018, the date of applicability of the EU Regulation on Geo-blocking[2].  

La Commission de droit commercial et économique de la Chambre vient d’adopter en seconde lecture le projet de nouveau Code des sociétés et des associations. 

Pour un aperçu des principaux changements par rapport à la règlementation existante, nous vous invitons à consulter une des présentations faites par notre associé Paul Alain Foriers, un des quatre experts en droit des sociétés désignés par le Ministre de la Justice: pdfLa réforme du Code des sociétés et des associations - Quelques questions importantes

Si vous souhaitez davantage d'informations, n’hésitez pas à prendre contact avec Paul Alain Foriers, Sandrine Hirsch ou Nikita Tissot.

 

Although the Insurance Distribution Directive (“IDD”) was supposed to be implemented on 1st October 2018 at the latest, the Belgian transposition law was only adopted on 14 November 2018. This implementation law is characterised by an expected dose of gold-plating together with a few surprising good news for the industry. In this news, we give our two-cent on the upcoming changes we thought were the most interesting to the industry – and hopefully the less boring to read about. 

  1. Introduction

The public offer of investment instruments and their admission to trading on a regulated market used to be governed by the law of 16 June 2006 implementing the Directive 2003/71/EC of 4 November 2003 (the “Law of 2006”).

While mandatory disclosure of information is vital to protect investors and constitutes a necessary step towards completion of the so-called ‘EU Capital Markets Union’[1], the rules laid down in the Directive 2003/17/EC led to divergent approaches across Europe and resulted in significant impediments to cross-border offers of securities, multiple listings on regulated markets and to EU consumer protection rules. 

On Tuesday 23 October, Sandrine Hirsch, Partner in our Corporate M&A department, gave a lecture on the obligations related to the new UBO Register at a workshop organised by the association “Avocats en droit boursier et financier/Advocaten in het beurs- en financieel recht”, in the presence of Mrs Annika Agemans from the SPF Finances/FOD Financiën.

Sandrine’s presentation is available here (in French).

Do not hesitate to contact her for more guidance on this matter: Cette adresse e-mail est protégée contre les robots spammeurs. Vous devez activer le JavaScript pour la visualiser.

 

 

One of the biggest threats associated with virtual currencies (or cryptocurrencies) is their potential use for money laundering and terrorist financing purposes. With the adoption of the 5th Anti-Money Laundering Directive ( “AMLD5”) on 30 May 2018, the European Union attempts, amongst other things, to address this issue.  

Numerous articles compare different European countries or compare Europe and the US when it comes to financial regulation, the IPO market or the types of FinTech applications that are easily adopted (or not) by the public. We decided to take a look in a different direction and together with the Japanese law firm Keiwa Sogo Law Offices, Simont Braun’s Digital Finance team examined the FinTech trends in both Belgium and Japan. Interesting resemblances, but also surprising differences came out from this analysis and showed that there are different means to the same end, especially when it comes to payments.