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Legal news 




Through this news blog we are keen to keep you informed on the latest major regulatory and legal evolutions in our legal practice domains (Belgium – European Union): 

Air law – Aviation law >

»  Belgian Royal Decree on the use of remotely piloted aircraft in the Belgian airspace (UAV – RPAS – drones) has been adopted and entered into force on 26 April 2016  [15 April 2016]: new revision expected in 2019

» EU Commission implements a new EU aviation strategy and a revised aviation safety Regulation – including a chapter on the safe integration of drones into the EU airspace based on a proportionate risk based approach [11 September 2018]

» Belgian Privacy Commission approves the privacy and data protection aspects in the draft Royal Decree on unmanned aerial vehicles [3 August 2015] 

Aerospace law – Space law >

»  since 2014 Belgium has procured launches of various Cubesats (QB-50 and OUFTI-1) with more launches being planned in the years to come : recently we have authored a comprehensive legal article about the ins and outs of the Belgian Space Act in the international Air & Space Law Journal (Kluwer): more info available on request [30 April 2016] 

»  Belgium amends its 2005 Space Act to regulate the launch of small satellites and orbital space flights:[1 December 2013]

Business law – Contract law – Procurement law >

» Belgium adopts tax friendly measures to stimulate the peer-to-peer economy [1 September 2016]

» Belgium adopts tax friendly measures to stimulate investment and crowfunding in start-up companies [1 July 2015]

Data protection law >

» EU publishes the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and Data Protection Directive in the law enforcement area (LEA): new rules become fully effective by June 2018  [3 May 2016]

» Belgian Data Protection Commission sues Facebook before Brussels Court for alleged persisent privacy infringements (e.g. tracking cookies) through its social media platform, affecting even non-members who click Facebook’s social plug in buttons on third party websites [13 June 2015] — Update: in October 2015 Facebook was in summary proceedings condemned to cease and desist from these unlawful practices and it technically adapted its website as directed to the Belgian public, while it also appealed against the court decision — Update: in June 2016 the Brussels Court of Appeal reversed the latter decision for the benefit of Facebook – however, a separate matter on the merits is still pending [June 2016]

»  EU Working Party 29 adopts Opinion on privacy aspects of unmanned aerial vehicles (drones): read more [16 June 2015]

» Belgian Privacy Commission adopts Recommendation on cookies [4 February 2015]

EU law >

» European Court of Justice will need to assess UEFA’s Financial Fair Play Regulations in soccer upon referral for preliminary ruling by the Court of First Instance Brussels [29 May 2015] 

Intellectual Property law – Media law >

» EU Directive on trade secrets 2016/943 is finally adopted: full text  : still to be followed by its implementation into national legislation within the EU Member States [8 June 2016] – fully implemented in Belgium in August 2018

» President of Court of First Instance of Antwerp forbids famous Belgian painter Luc Tuymans to use a journalist’s copyright protected photograph of a well known Belgian politician as basis for a similar painting on grounds of counterfeiting [15 January 2015] — Update: in September 2015 both parties (journalist and painter) reached an amicable settlement as a result of which they desist from further appeal proceedings.

Information Technology law >

» Belgian Supreme Court ultimately decides that Yahoo! Inc despite of lacking any corporate presence on the Belgian territory, is obliged to directly and positively respond to any local Belgian judicial request for disclosure of identifying IP-addresses used behind Yahoo’s web based e-mail accounts of those subscribers who misuse such services for committing criminal or fraudulent acts in Belgium; creating an important legal precedent for other foreign e-mail, social media or other electronic service providers [8 December 2015] 

» EU Directive on Network and Information Security (NIS) was adopted in July 2016 (full text), still to be followed by its implementation into national legislation within the EU Member States [6 July 2016] – Belgian implementation expected in 2019

» EU Commission issues guidance on cloud contracts, service level agreements (SLA’s) and standardisation: read more [26 June 2014] 

Internet law: e-business and e-commerce >

» President of the Brussels’ Court of Commerce ruled in view of certain regulatory infringements that the UberPop service constitutes unfair competition to the traditional taxi sector and therefore it imposes a cease-and-desist order to be abided by within a term of 21 days (subject to financial penalty of 10.000 EUR per subsequent infringement). Uber temporarily ceased this service but announced that it will appeal against this ruling. [24 September 2015]

» Belgian Data Protection Commission adopts Recommendation on social plug ins on websites [13 May 2015] 

» EU adopts reviewed text of the Payment Services Directive (PSD2): full textstill to be followed by its implementation into national legislation within the EU Member States expected by January 2018 [25 November 2015] – fully implemented in Belgium by 2 parallel Acts in 2018

»  Brussels’ Police Tribunal considers that the UberPop service is not just social carpooling, but it offers strictly regulated paid-for persons’ transport to which the whole traditional taxi sector is subject [3 May 2015]

Telecommunications law >

» President of Commercial Court of Brussels prohibits SABAM, a Belgian collecting society, from claiming for copyright payments from ISP’s involved in either uploading, transferring or downloading of any (audiovisual or other copyright protected) content, for lack of any new communication to the general public [13 March 2015]

Please do not hesitate to contact us should you have any question related to any of these fields.

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