June 2018 – EU MIPIM PropTech

Anouk De Graef, our firm’s real estate partner, will attend MIPIM PropTech Europe in Paris this 20 & 21 June.

MIPIM PropTech Europe is the premier Property and Tech event in Europe, providing insight to the latest cutting-edge property technology and the future of property in the European market for the industry’s key decision makers.

We look forward to meeting our clients at this important real estate event.

 

 

June 2018 – Administrators of Facebook fan pages considered to be joint-controllers under EU Privacy law

In an important ruling, the Court of Justice of the EU (CJEU) ruled yesterday (5 June) that an administrator of a fan page on Facebook may be considered a controller jointly responsible with Facebook for the processing of personal data, as it takes part in the determination of the purposes and means of processing of personal data of visitors to its fan page.

While this ruling relates to Directive 95/46/EC, which was repealed by the GDPR, it will also be of particular significance under the GDPR.

Read more on: https://curia.europa.eu/jcms/upload/docs/application/pdf/2018-06/cp180081en.pdf

 

 

May 2018 – Incorporation of artist’s estate foundation

May 2018 – Our firm assisted in the incorporation of the Charlemagne Palestine Foundation. Charlemagne Palestine, born in Brooklyn in 1947, is amongst others a groundbreaking musical performance artist.

Our firm specialises in the establishment of artist’s estate foundations and offers a one-stop-shop full service covering corporate, IP rights, estate planning, …

(for more info on Bozar’s current exhibition see https://www.bozar.be/en/activities/132307-charlemagne-palestine).

April 2018 – Major SABAM tariff rise succesfully disputed

We are very proud to announce Philip Walravens & Caroline Lebon have successfully assisted a series of clients of the music concert & festival industry in a litigation against SABAM, the Belgian Association of Authors, Composers and Publishers, in relation to the recent major rise in license tariffs.

In a decision of April 12th 2018, the Brussels Commercial Court has declared SABAM’s rise in tariffs to constitute an abuse of its dominant market position, and hence constitute an unfair market practice. This decision will have a large impact on all concerts & festival organizations in Belgium, and the decision was widely communicated in the press (De Standaard, De Tijd)

 

 

 

April 2018 – GDPR Roadshow in India

Florian De Rouck, member of our TMT / IP team team, participated to the Belgian trade mission focusing on IT, IP & Law in India from 25 to 31 March. The trade mission was organized by Brussels Invest & Expert (BIE). Florian spoke in Bangalore, Hyderabad & Chennai (known as India’s IT hub) on GDPR and its implications for Indian firms.

Indian companies are taking a particular interest in the EU practices in adopting the GDPR which is crucial for their EU clients, especially as the Indian government is also preparing a revised Indian data protection act with reinforced and new obligations similar to the EU regulation.

We are excited to deepen our relations in the fast-evolving Indian IT market, which has proven to be an excellent partner for EU firms in relation to a number of services.

 

April 2018 – VAT on immovable lease: back and forth

In the fall of last year, the government withdrew its project to subject immovable lease to VAT on option due to budget constraints.

Apparently, things have changed as, after the budget control of March 2018, the press release issued at that occasion announces that the measure will be taken with effect as from 1 October 2018.

Not so many details are available at this stage, but it seems that that the intention of the government is to make the option possible only:

  • for newly constructed or deeply renovated buildings;
  • if both the landlord and tenant agree to do so;
  • if the tenant is a VAT taxpayer including VAT exempt tenants such as insurance companies, financial institutions, etc.

Our Tax practice will keep you informed of the development as soon as rumours have changed into text.

Our fear is that such a limited scope of application creates a double real estate market detrimental to the readability of the sector of activity. Indeed, depending on the option is exercised or not (or can be exercised), the building investment cost will differ by 21%, which, in turn, will be reflected in the resale price in the future.

January 2018 – Caroline Lebon publishes updated overview of the principles of statutes of limitations in Belgian contract law

Caroline Lebon co-authored the update of her elaborate 2004 publication regarding the principles of statutes of limitations in Belgian contract law (published in the loose-leaf commentary “Artikelsgewijze commentaar verbintenissenrecht” – Kluwer).

More information regarding the publication may be found on: http://shop.wolterskluwer.be/shop/nl_BE/navigation/308/Bijzondere-Overeenkomsten.-Artikelsgewijze-commentaren?p=7500115299.

10 January 2018 – Belgium’s first step in GDPR implementation

As a first step in Belgium’s privacy reform, a new law was published today setting up a Belgian Data Protection Authority (replacing the current Belgian Privacy Commission) in anticipation of the future applicability of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). With this law, the Belgian Data Protection Authority acquires substantial investigative and judiciary powers, as well as new bodies which will be able to impose the sanctions introduced under the GDPR.

While the GDPR will provide for a greater degree of harmonization than the current regime , there are approximately 50 possibilities for Member States exceptions, additional requirements or specifications to the GDPR (e.g. in terms of processing of HR data, minimum age of children for consent, situations where a DPO is mandatory). These will be the subject of a separate piece of legislation, for which no draft is currently available.