Volkswagen, Porsche and the Hedge Funds: It’s Hannover After All

Here’s the latest leg in the tour of Germany on which the Porsche claimants have embarked: The Braunschweig District Court (Landgericht) dealt with the claimants’ application to move the matter to Hannover today, and granted the motion. You may recall that for some claimants, this will be the third court dealing with the matter, and it looks like a safe bet that it will not be the last. Continue reading

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Update: Preventing Precedent Made More Difficult

Now that was quick: Last week, the German Bundestag passed a law amending the Code of Civil Procedure (ZPO) designed to allow the Federal Supreme Court (Bundesgerichtshof) to issue judgments that create precedents.

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International Comparisons of Litigation Costs: Europe, Japan, the United States and Canada

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s Institute for Legal Reform has come out with a study that compares litigation costs in the United States, Canada, Japan, and Europe. Not surprisingly, the U.S. have the highest litigation costs, measured as a percentage of GDP. Perhaps less expected: Within Europe, Germany has amongst the hightest growth rates of liability costs.  Continue reading

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“Happy Birthday to You” – Royalty-free

European lawyers, and German lawyers in particular, love to make fun of U.S. litigation, and class actions in particular (and are highly sceptical of any plans to introduce them in Europe). But if there ever is one such thing,  this may just be the one class action everybody loves. “Good Morning to You Productions Corp”. seeks to declare invalid the copyright claim of Warner/Chappell Music, Inc. for “Happy Birthday to You” and reclaim the world’s most popular song for the public. Continue reading

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