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    Damages and compensation in case of data protection violations

    Employers face far-reaching sanctions for data protection violations under the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). On the one hand, the competent data protection authority can impose a fine of up to EUR 20 million or 4% of the company's total annual turnover worldwide. In addition to this sanction, employees can also claim damages and compensation against the employer (Art. 82 GDPR). This is increasingly occupying the German labor courts.

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    | Tags: Data protection Law, Labor law


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    Case Law Update: No continuation of pay during lockdown closure

    Both last year and this spring, Germany was in lockdown. A large number of businesses, especially retail stores, restaurants and hotels, were therefore forced to close for extended periods. Many employers sent their employees into short-time work and the employees received short-time allowance. In some cases, however, it was not possible to order short-time work or to receive short-time allowance (e.g. in the case of marginally employed workers). In these cases, the question arose whether the already financially strapped employers had to continue to pay their employees. The Federal Labor Court has now issued a pleasing ruling for employers.

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    | Tags: Labor law


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    Case Law Update: Reasonable doubts about a sick note after notice of termination

    In practice, employees often take sick leave immediately after receiving notice of termination and submit a certificate of incapacity for work (sick note). It is not uncommon for them to be on sick leave until the end of the notice period and the employer is obliged to continue to pay remuneration until the termination date without receiving any work performance. Under certain circumstances, outstanding vacation must then be compensated.

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    | Tags: Labor law


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    Large German companies have a positive view of ESG challenges

    Environmental, social, governance (ESG for short), hence topics relating to climate protection, social issues and corporate governance, are currently being discussed intensively in public and at the political level. Companies that want to be competitive in the future will increasingly have to deal with ESG aspects to consider the effects of their business models on the environment and society and vice versa (“double materiality”). The climate crisis and unsustainable consumption of resources lead to a multitude of financial and material risks. At the same time, demand from financial service providers' customers for sustainable investments is increasing. This rises the demand on sustainability reporting and a adequate risk management in companies. The diverse ESG challenges for the economy were the subject of a current survey.

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    Germany reforms Real Estate Transfer Tax Rules

    The German legislator passed a reform of the Real Estate Transfer Tax Act which particularly tightens rules for share deals with effect from 1 July 2021. We take a closer look at the new rules and provide information on transitional rules.

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    | Tags: Banking & Finance


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    L-Bank Subject to ECB Supervision

    Landeskreditbank Baden-Württemberg ("L-Bank") is subject to direct supervision by the European Central Bank ("ECB"). The European Court of Justice ("ECJ") ruled that the ECB had correctly assessed the L-Bank as an important institution and was therefore subject to direct supervision by the ECB (ECJ, judgment of 8 May 2019 - C-450/17 P). However, the imminent amendment of the Capital Requirements Directive is likely end this period of direct ECB-regulation shortly.

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    | Tags: Banking & Finance


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    Right to Inspect BaFin's Files

    According to Sec. 1 of the Freedom of Information Act (Informationsfreiheitsgesetz "IFG"), everyone has the right to access official information in accordance with the further requirements of the Act. In principle, the files held by an the German Federal Financial Supervisory Authority are also covered by the right to information. Until a recent court ruling this right to information was, however, severely curtailed.

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    | Tags: Banking & Finance


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    Do Utility Tokens Qualify as Securities?

    Classification of utility tokens as securities has massive implications for all stakeholders in the crypto-business. Yet there is no clear answer to the question whether utility tokens are in fact securities. With this article we will examine the decisive factors that determine securities under German law.

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    | Tags: Banking & Finance


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    Services in the Field of Cryptotokens - a Case for Financial Supervision?

    In the area of cryptotokens there are - apart from the user or investor - essentially three groups of participants. First there is the issuer of a cryptotokens, who has to deal first and foremost with the regulatory treatment of his tokens. In this article, however, we will focus on the essential secondary services in relation to tokens.

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    | Tags: Banking & Finance


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    Confusion of Concepts

    The regulatory classification of cryptotokens is anything but trivial. Unnecessarily, however, the non-uniform designation for different forms of cryptotokens contributes to the confusion. Sometimes the same terms are used for different circumstances, which makes the confusion perfect.

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    | Tags: Banking & Finance