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Legal issues

Our legal cooperation partner BDO Legal has compiled the relevant information about Brexit and its possible impact on German businesses.

Labour law

How does Brexit affect employment contracts with UK citizens in Germany? What changes can be expected by UK companies with subsidiaries or branch offices in Germany? Will personnel leasing to and from the UK still be possible? Will a visa or a blue card be needed for this purpose? This list is by no means comprehensive. Further details on this thematic complex can be found in a list of issues compiled by our colleagues at BDO Legal.

However, any specific cases under labour law should be checked separately to see whether and to what extent they are affected by the possible consequences of Brexit. We are happy to support you in this.

Contract law

Brexit will affect existing and future contracts relating to the UK as domestic British law is set to change after Brexit. Even though the changes are not yet clear, companies are well advised to check their contract portfolios to see if action is required.

  • Do you have contracts with partners based in the UK?
  • Do you have contracts (e.g. licensing or distribution agreements) relating to the UK?
  • Which jurisdiction is applicable to them? For example, does such a contract include a choice-of-law clause that specifies the application of UK law?
  • Do the contracts assume a barrier-free market between Germany and the UK?
  • If Brexit causes uncertainties about regulatory changes, can such uncertainties be cushioned through MAC clauses (material adverse change clauses) in contracts, including contracts currently under negotiation?

Our colleagues at BDO Legal would be happy to support you in reviewing your contract portfolio under the above-mentioned criteria and also other aspects and to discuss your options with you.

Trademark/IP law

The European Union trademark and registered design are success stories of the European Union (EU). Intellectual property rights can be acquired for trading in all EU Member States simply by applying to the Office of the European Union for Intellectual Property (EUIPO). Registration is always fast and smooth, and the costs are manageable.

If new countries join the EU, the existing European Union trademarks and registered designs are extended to cover those new Member States under the relevant EU regulations. But what happens if a Member State leaves the EU? In view of Brexit, this has now become a relevant question.

Further information from BDO Legal can be found here and we can also recommend the article in Legal Tribune Online.