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Firm: ALTIUS/Tiberghien

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Must AstraZeneca Supply the European Union with Sufficient COVID-19 Vaccines under Belgian Law?
ALTIUS/Tiberghien, February 2021

Introduction On 27 August 2020 the European Commission, on behalf of EU member states, entered into an advance purchase agreement (APA) with AstraZeneca for the production, purchase and supply of the Anglo-Swedish company's COVID-19 vaccine in the European Union.(1) The APA provides for: AstraZeneca's supply of 300 million doses of its COVID-19 vaccine (the initial Europe doses); and an option for the European Union to order an additional 100 million doses (the optional doses)...

Occupational Doctors' Enhanced Role in Combating COVID-19: Contact Tracing, Quarantine Certificates and Testing
ALTIUS/Tiberghien, February 2021

Introduction On 21 January 2021 a new royal decree was published in the Official Gazette which has temporarily extended occupational doctors' role in combating the COVID-19 pandemic in the workplace...

New National Labour Council CLA Sets Framework for Covid-Telework
ALTIUS/Tiberghien, February 2021

Traditionally, Belgian labour law distinguishes between two forms of telework, namely structural telework, regulated by the Collective Labour Agreement n° 85, and occasional telework, regulated by the Act on Workable and Agile Work. Since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, a third category has been added, namely 'Covid telework', which was, at a certain point, recommended but has now been made compulsory again by the government...

Enhanced Role for the Occupational Doctor in Combatting Covid-19: Contact Tracing, Quarantine Certificates and Testing
ALTIUS/Tiberghien, January 2021

A new Royal Decree published on 21 January 2021 in the Belgian Official Gazette has temporarily extended the occupational doctor's role in combatting the Covid-19 virus...

The BCA Suspects Caudalie of Imposing Minimum Resale Prices on its Distributors
ALTIUS/Tiberghien, January 2021

Over the last 4 years, the Belgian Competition Authority (“BCA”) has increasingly scrutinised anticompetitive restraints in vertical agreements and assessed these restraints under Article IV.1 of the Belgian Code of Economic Law and Article 101 TFEU...

The ICC 2021 Arbitration Rules: 7 Noteworthy Changes
ALTIUS/Tiberghien, December 2020

The International Court of Arbitration of the International Chamber of Commerce (‘ICC’) has issued a revised version of its Arbitration Rules. The 2021 Rules enter into force on 1 January 2021 and aim to make arbitration even more efficient, flexible and transparent...

Points for Retail Sector Employers to Consider when Dismissing Employees for Economic or Technical Reasons
ALTIUS/Tiberghien, December 2020

The retail sector has been one of the sectors most affected by the COVID-19 pandemic and as a result employers therein might be considering dismissing employees for economic or technical reasons. Employers must be aware that most joint committees in the retail sector have entered into collective bargaining agreements (CBAs) obliging employers to first take measures to avoid dismissals and, if dismissals cannot be avoided, to comply with a specific procedure...

Precaution is Not Enough – CJEU Finds that Cannabidiol (CBD) is not a Narcotic Drug
ALTIUS/Tiberghien, November 2020

The legal status of CBD, a naturally occurring compound found in the cannabis plant, is murky. Certain Member States are more restrictive about it than others. The Court of Justice of the EU has very recently provided clarification in the context of a preliminary ruling (case C-663/18 of 19 November 2020). This case revolves around CBD’s ban in France, after it had been imported from the Czech Republic where it was lawfully produced...

Invoking Copyright to Block the Submission of Evidence? Nice Try, But No Cigar!
ALTIUS/Tiberghien, November 2020

The Court of Justice of the European Union delivers judgments regarding the concept of “communication to the public” faster than legal scholars can read and dissect them. While we are eagerly awaiting the Court’s analysis of different types of hyperlinking, it has taken less than two months to follow Advocate General Hogan’s opinion regarding the emailing of evidence containing copyrighted works to a court in legal proceedings...

Attention Points for Retail Sector Employers Considering Dismissing Employees
ALTIUS/Tiberghien, November 2020

As the retail sector is one of the sectors most affected by the Covid-19 pandemic, employers within it might be considering dismissing employees for economic or technical reasons...

Can Parallel Importers Rebrand Generic Medicines?
ALTIUS/Tiberghien, November 2020

If a branded medicine and its generic version are put on the EEA market by economically linked undertakings, is a parallel importer then allowed to rebrand and repackage the imported generic version as the branded reference medicine? This has been a hotly debated issue in recent years and recently led the Brussels Court of Appeal (CoA) to refer three questions to the European Court of Justice (ECJ) (Cases C-253/20 and C-254/20)...

Do Not Forget to Provide Any of Your Employees Who Must be Present in Your Workplace with a Document to Certify this Fact
ALTIUS/Tiberghien, November 2020

Belgium is, for the second time, in lockdown. The new Ministerial Decree of 1 November 2020 stipulates that, as from today until 13 December 2020, all workers are obliged to telework. However, an exception applies when either the employee’s role or the continuity of business operations, activities and services does not allow for teleworking...

The Social Partners Have Agreed to Continue with the Social Elections and to Further Extend the Opportunities for Electronic Voting and Postal Voting
ALTIUS/Tiberghien, October 2020

Due to the dramatic increase in Covid-19 infection numbers, there were calls – once again – to postpone the social elections that are scheduled for the period between 16 and 29 November 2020. However, on 27 October 2020, the social partners reached an agreement not to do so, but to extend the opportunities for voting electronically or by post so that the elections can take place in Covid-proof circumstances...

New Teleworking Rules to Limit Further Spread of COVID-19
ALTIUS/Tiberghien, October 2020

Introduction On 16 October 2020 the government reinforced the urgent measures to limit the further spread of COVID-19. Teleworking is no longer highly recommended, but has become the standard for all employees whose roles allow for telework. Yet, the new rule is less far-reaching than that in place during the first lockdown in March 2020, as an exception now applies when the continuity of business operations, activities and services does not allow for teleworking...

Hyperlinking and Copyright Law: When Does the Copyright Holder Have a Say In It?
ALTIUS/Tiberghien, October 2020

The functioning of the World Wide Web is in many ways dependent on the use of hyperlinks. Many of those hyperlinks refer to works protected by copyright. In his recent Opinion, Advocate General Szpunar has considered which kinds of hyperlinks should be regarded as a communication to the public that require the copyright holder’s prior authorisation...

Last Call to Implement Electronic Voting and/or Voting by Letter for Covid-Proof Social Elections
ALTIUS/Tiberghien, October 2020

 In principle, the decision to vote electronically should have been taken as early as February 2020, at a time when few had ever heard of Covid-19. Companies that did not do so at that time but, as a result of Covid-19, would like to do so now for security reasons or because their staff still (mostly) work from home, have been given the opportunity to still introduce electronic voting. However, they have to reach an agreement on this issue at the latest on day X + 56 (i.e...

COVID-19: New Record-Keeping Obligation and Compliance Check Relating to Foreign Workers and Self-Employed Individuals
ALTIUS/Tiberghien, September 2020

As part of some new measures that aim to reduce the spread of COVID-19, the government has imposed a new record-keeping obligation on certain employers and users which temporarily rely on foreign employees or self-employed individuals. In-scope employers and users must also verify whether the foreign employees and self-employed individuals have duly completed the passenger locator form. These new obligations apply from 24 August 2020 until 31 October 2020, but will likely be extended...

New Rules on Temporary Unemployment from 1 September 2020: Start Preparing Now
ALTIUS/Tiberghien, August 2020

From 1 September 2020, new rules on temporary unemployment will enter into force. Companies and sectors that are substantially affected by the COVID-19 crisis can continue to apply the current and simplified COVID-19 force majeure temporary unemployment regime until 31 December 2020. The list of in-scope sectors has yet to be determined by the minister of work...

New Rules on Temporary Unemployment as of 1 September 2020: Start Making Preparations Now
ALTIUS/Tiberghien, August 2020

From 1 September 2020, new rules on temporary unemployment will enter into force.  Companies and sectors that are substantially impacted by the Covid-19 crisis can continue to apply the current and simplified ‘Covid-19 force majeure’ temporary unemployment regime until 31 December 2020. The list of in-scope sectors is yet to be determined by the Minister of Work...

Towards New EU Rules for Preventing Packaging Waste
ALTIUS/Tiberghien, July 2020

The European Commission (“EC”) is collecting data and feedback from stakeholders about the European Union’s (“EU”) current rules on packaging and packaging waste. Based on these insights, it will propose an amendment to the current rules that aim to ensure a properly functioning market for packaging recycling and diminishing packaging waste...

Reopening your Workplace after Lockdown: 10 Key Questions
ALTIUS/Tiberghien, July 2020

With the exit from lockdown in full swing, many companies are recalling their staff to the workplace. This article answers 10 FAQs that employers, business managers and HR specialists must consider during employees' return to work. FAQs Must employers respect health and safety measures on their employees' return to work and, if so, which ones?Yes, to the extent possible, social distancing (ie, maintaining a distance between people of at least 1...

New Unfair Trading Practices in the Food Supply Chain
ALTIUS/Tiberghien, July 2020

Within the agricultural and food supply chain, significant imbalances in bargaining power between suppliers and buyers of agri-food products are frequent. Those imbalances in bargaining power are likely to lead to unfair trading practices. The Directive 2019/633 (the “Directive”) aims to ensure that agri-food companies are protected against these unfair practices.   Scope of the Directive The Directive’s scope is very limited...

What Can Member States do to Financially Support their Undertakings Under EU State Aid Rules?
ALTIUS/Tiberghien, June 2020

The Covid-19 outbreak is not only a huge challenge for health care, but also has enormous consequences for the economy. Different sectors (such as the hospitality, tourism and transport sectors and many others) will not be able to overcome the difficult times that we are currently facing without public support. Many Member States have already adopted exceptional aid measures and many more will follow, but public support for undertakings must still comply with the EU State aid rules...

10 Quick-and-Key Questions on a Safe Return to Work with Covid-19
ALTIUS/Tiberghien, June 2020

With the exit from the lockdown now in full force, more companies are bringing their staff back to their work premises. We have listed 10 quick-but-key questions that every business manager or HR specialist must deal with during this restart. To read the full Q&A, CLICK HERE...

FAQs: Employment Ministry's and DPA's New Positions on Checking Employees' Temperatures
ALTIUS/Tiberghien, June 2020

The controversial issue of whether employers can check their employees' temperatures has been much debated. Both the Employment Ministry and the Data Protection Authority (DPA) have recently changed their positions in this respect...

 

 

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