Corona and the German Courts – A Tale in Three Acts

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SARS-CoV-2_49534865371Like every other area of public life, the Corona crisis has hit the German courts with full force and did not leave it unscathed. But the reactions vary: They range from judges and courts still holding ordinary sessions and carrying on with oral hearings to courts being virtually closed except for on-call judges for very urgent matters, with standard civil and commercial matters being postponed ex offico. Three aspects of the current situation are of particular interest: Continue reading

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Cases of the Week: How (Not) To Bundle Claims

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Landgericht BraunschweigGermany does not have US style class actions. The introduction of the Capital Market Investors’ Model Proceeding Act (Kapitalanlegermusterverfahrensgesetz, KapMuG) in 2005 (triggered by the Deutsche Telekom securities litigation) and of the Model Declaratory Proceedings (Musterfeststellungsklage) that were added to the German Code of Civil Procedure (ZPO) in November 2018 in order to address the wave of Diesel litigation have not really changed that. In the assessment of the plaintiffs’ bar, Germany’s legal tools for seeking collective redress are still not fit for purpose. Continue reading

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Art Law: Magdeburg Court on Deletion of Entry in Lost Art Database

Kalabrische KüsteIn a judgment of November 2019, which was reported in the press only recently, the Magdeburg District Court (Landgericht) had to decide a dispute between the current owner of a painting and the heirs of a former owner who had the painting registered in the Lost Art Database. The judgment has, in true German tradition, been published in an anonymised version. Read in conjunction with the press coverage of the dispute in The Art Newspaper, Süddeutsche or Handelsblatt, it is however easy to fill in the blanks.  Continue reading

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Climate Change Litigation: Hamm Court of Appeals Considers Site Visit in Peru

Skulptur_vor_dem_Oberlandesgericht_-_panoramioWe have tracked the first major piece of Climate Change litigation in Germany, an action by Peruvian farmer Saul LLiuya against German energy company RWE, since it was started in November 2015. Here’s a recap of what happened so far:

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