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Firm: ALTIUS/Tiberghien

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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...

No Retroactive Suspension of the Notice Period in the Event Of 'Corona' Temporary Unemployment
ALTIUS/Tiberghien, June 2020

  Up until now, there has been no suspension of a notice period served upon an employee who has been made temporarily unemployed under the ‘corona’ regime. Such a notice period started during the corona temporary unemployment and continued to run during this period. Given, as a consequence, employers would be able to dismiss employees 'cheaply', a draft bill was submitted in Parliament to have the notice period suspended in the event of corona temporary unemployment...

Cancelled Events: Ticket Refunds?
ALTIUS/Tiberghien, June 2020

In the past months, many events including concerts, sports competitions, festivals, plays and musicals, have been cancelled or postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic and the related measures taken by the Belgian government. Although the latest government announcements indicate that some events will be allowed again as of 1st July 2020, other cancellation or postponement decisions could happen in the coming weeks...

Social Elections Procedure Postponed due to COVID-19
ALTIUS/Tiberghien, May 2020

As a result of the COVID-19 crisis, the social partners have decided to suspend the current social election procedure and postpone the continuation of this procedure until after the summer. On 24 March 2020 the National Labour Council (NLC) issued an opinion that highlighted the implications of this postponement for companies. This NLC opinion has been transposed into a law which was voted in Parliament on 23 April 2020. This article outlines the most important consequences for employers...

Due to the COVID-19 Crisis, The European Commission has Adopted Temporary Derogations from Certain Competition Rules in the Dairy, Flower, and Potato Sectors
ALTIUS/Tiberghien, May 2020

 On 30 April 2020, the European Commission adopted three implementing regulations allowing temporary derogations from the strict cartel prohibition provided for by EU competition law in three specific agricultural sectors: dairy, potato and live plants and flowers. The latter sector is said to broadly cover “live trees and other plants, bulbs, roots and the like, cut flowers and ornamental foliage”...

COVID-19 Outbreak: Aid Measures in the Cultural Sector
ALTIUS/Tiberghien, May 2020

To limit the spread of Covid-19, all indoor and outdoor private and public cultural, festive, recreational, leisure and sport activities /events are prohibited until at least 10 May 2020 (included). Sport activities without physical contact and with a maximum of three persons are already allowed from 4 May 2020. Museums might be allowed to re-open from 18 May 2020 under strict conditions...

"The Show Must Go On": Protection Against Creditors during the COVID-19 Crisis
ALTIUS/Tiberghien, May 2020

Queen’s song was clearly not about COVID 19 but the message remains the same: even if the music industry is struggling, the show must go on! It is undeniable that, with the lockdown measures and other restrictions imposed by the Belgian government to fight against COVID-19, many companies have to deal with revenue loss while keeping high level of costs. This is particularly true for the cultural sector and the music industry with the cancellation of so many events...

Reimbursement of Medicinal Products in Times of Pandemics and Budgetary Constraints: Why Quick Fixes Do Not Work
ALTIUS/Tiberghien, April 2020

  With national governments scrambling to take measures in order to counter the Covid-19 pandemic, we are again confronted with the fact that a EU common policy in the healthcare field is quasi inexistent. This is equally so in respect of the pricing and reimbursement of medicines...

Credit Facility and COVID-19 – Can I Invoke Force Majeure?
ALTIUS/Tiberghien, March 2020

Discussing the legal concept ‘Force Majeure’ in credit agreements – if it can be called upon, it has in principle a temporary nature and does not relief you from payment obligations. In general, force majeure is an unforeseeable and unavoidable event that occurs  after a credit agreement has been concluded (i.e...

Coronavirus - Can my Bank Suspend or Terminate my Credit Lines? What to Do?
ALTIUS/Tiberghien, March 2020

Balancing between your bank taking purely business considerations or being reasonable. We advise being proactive and approaching your bank. The Coronavirus is unfortunately a human tragedy that is affecting thousands of people on all continents. It has also a very serious impact on businesses worldwide and locally...

Help! My Business Needs Liquidity
ALTIUS/Tiberghien, March 2020

My business has liquidity needs... What can I do to keep this situation under control? As the coronavirus has already made a serious impact on the world economy, companies are faced with important liquidity needs. In uncertain times, easy access to cash can become rare. What can you do? First, approach what is probably your most clear source of liquidity, your bankers...

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

The Corona crisis is not only a huge challenge for health care, but also the consequences for the economy will be enormous. Different sectors (such as the hospitality sector and the transport sector) will not be able to overcome the difficult times we are currently facing without public support...

Does the Coronavirus Crisis Allow me to Rely on ‘Hardship' Towards Private Contract Parties?
ALTIUS/Tiberghien, March 2020

The coronavirus crisis could make the ability of a business to perform pending contracts harder. Even though so-called ‘hardship’ clauses are perfectly valid and enforceable under Belgian law, hardship is not generally accepted as a principle of Belgian contract law. Until the rules on obligations of the new Civil Code, which recognise hardship, enter into force, there are exceptions and creative ways to deal with this problem...

Can a Employer Oblige its Employees to Work From Home as Part of a Prevention Plan to Avoid the Further Breakout of the Coronavirus?
ALTIUS/Tiberghien, March 2020

Following the measures announced by the Federal Government on 12 March 2020, more and more employers are considering implementing a temporary telework regime, in which employees are required to work from home. Can an employer impose such a measure and what are the implications?    An employer cannot unilaterally oblige an employee to work from home, except if employees are exposed to specific health and safety related risks at work...

Can a Member State in Times of Corona Crisis Prohibit a Pharmaceutical Company to Deliver Certain Products (Such as Testing Kits Or Protective Medical Gear) to other EU Countries?
ALTIUS/Tiberghien, March 2020

  With the Corona crisis, countries such as Germany, France and the Czech Republic have already announced bans on exports of protective gear to avoid shortages at their countries. But is this in conformity with the principle of free movement of goods as provided for in articles 34-36 TFEU? This principle is one of the cornerstones of the European Union's internal market which implies that national barriers to the free movement of goods within the EU need to be removed...

Coronavirus and GDPR
ALTIUS/Tiberghien, March 2020

In this challenging period of the Coronavirus outbreak, your organisation might currently be taking strong internal measures to protect its employees while ensuring work continuity. Such measures could have data protection implications and therefore you might be wondering how to take them in accordance with the GDPR. We have answered the most important GDPR questions below...

Coronavirus, Patents, Trade Marks and Designs
ALTIUS/Tiberghien, March 2020

EUIPO On 16 March 2020, the Executive Director of the European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) has issued Decision No EX-20-3 extending all time limits expiring between 9 March 2020 and 30 April 2020, that affect all parties before the Office, to 1 May 2020. In principle, the new deadlines will not be communicated to the parties on a case-by-case basis...

Bars, Restaurants and Leisure Centres will be Closed at Least Until 3 April 2020. What Does This Mean for All Lease Agreements Concerned?
ALTIUS/Tiberghien, March 2020

All shops, bars, restaurants and leisure centres will be closed at least until 6 April 2020. Only grocery stores, pet food stores, pharmacies, banks, post offices and book shops will remain open until that date insofar as the social distancing (at least 1 meter distance) can be guaranteed. Night shops can stay open until 10 pm insofar as social distancing is applied. Food stalls on markets are only allowed insofar as considered essential...

 

 

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