Category

German Corporate Law

Business in GermanyCivil actionDebt collectionGerman Corporate LawGerman LawGoing to courtLitigation in Germany

Pitfalls of German Law (Part 2)

Be careful when suing a German Kommanditgesellschaft (KG), an Offene Handelsgesellschaft (OHG) or a Gesellschaft bürgerlichen Rechts (GBR) The single most common mistake foreign claimants and their non-German litigation lawyers make when taking a German business to court is that they only sue the partnership itself and not the personally liable partners (persönlich haftende Gesellschafter). To avoid any misunderstanding: This post deals with German partnerships (Personengesellschaften) as debtors, not with German limited liability companies (GmbH)…
Bernhard Schmeilzl
March 15, 2017
Business in GermanyGerman Corporate LawGerman Labor LawGerman Law

Pitfalls of German Contract Law and German Company Regulations (Part 1)

Foreign Contract Lawyers beware of surprising German Laws and Directives! The German Civil Code (Bürgerliches Gesetzbuch, BGB, available in English), the German Commercial Code (Handelsgesetzbuch, HGB, partly available in English), the German Act on Corporations (Aktiengesetz, AktG) and the Act on Limited Liability Companies (GmbHG, available in English) are all full of surprising regulations which can essentially void any agreement or deed drafted by a naive (in the nicest sense) British or US lawyer who…
Bernhard Schmeilzl
February 20, 2017
Business in GermanyGerman Corporate LawGerman Law

Buying a German Company

M&A Transactions Germany If you consider buying or merging with a German company or stock corporation (see checklist here), we can either structure and manage the entire acquisition process for you or merely assist with specific tasks like due diligence (e.g. financial, legal, business, IT) or contract negotiation. Our team of lawyers, financial and business experts has extensive experience with international M&A projects in various industry sectors. We will always keep matters as simple and…
Bernhard Schmeilzl
August 3, 2016
Business in GermanyBusiness Tax & Fiscal ObligationsFamily LawGerman Corporate LawGerman Labor LawGerman LawGerman Probate

English Desk at German Law Firm Graf Partners LLP

The Munich and Regensburg based German law firm Graf & Partners LLP, established in 2003, specialises in providing professional legal services to English speaking clients, both business and private. Our British-German specialist teams of lawyers and linguists advise on all legal and tax issues connected to Germany and European Union law, from business, corporate and labour to international probate, family law and property. The English Desk in our Munich office is headed by dual qualified…
Bernhard Schmeilzl
August 3, 2016
Business in GermanyGerman Corporate Law

Crash Course on Duties and Liability of a German Company Director (vs the Director of a UK Limited)

German-British Corporate Lawyers of Graf & Partners (Munich) coach newly appointed directors, CEOs and managers of German and English companies and corporations German Corporation Law and Limited Liability companies hold a number of surprising differences compared to UK or US company law. Have you, for example, ever heard of the German principle of "Kapitalerhaltungsgrundsatz" (i.e. the manager's duty to maintain the minimum share capital)? Well, if you intend to act as the director of a German…
Bernhard Schmeilzl
July 26, 2016
Civil actionGerman Corporate LawGerman Labor LawGerman LawGerman ProbateGerman Succession & Inheritance LawGerman Tax LawGerman Tort LawLitigation in Germany

Expert Reports on German Law

As a full service German and English law firm, established in 2003, and the editors of the expert blog on German civil procedure rules we are often asked to provide English Law Firms with an expert report based on issues of German Law. Bernhard Schmeilzl, a bilingual Lawyer who qualified in 2001 (admitted to the Munich Bar) and is able to provide expert reports to be used in English litigation and arbitration cases based on…
Bernhard Schmeilzl
June 2, 2016
German Corporate Law

What is an “eingetragener Verein” (e.V.) under German Law

Ho to establish a German Non-Profit Organisation Most businesses in Germany are organised either as corporations (GmbH or AG) or as partnerships (GBR, OHG, KG, PartG), for an overview see here. Sometimes, however, one comes across organisations which have the letters "e.V." after their name. This stands for "eingetragener Verein" meaning "registered association". An e.V. under German law is a Körperschaft (corporation), which is defined as being a legal entity which is separate from its…
Bernhard Schmeilzl
October 13, 2015
Business in GermanyBusiness Tax & Fiscal ObligationsGerman Corporate LawGerman Labor LawGerman Tax LawStarting BusinessStarting or Expanding Business

When starting a Business in Germany: Don’t Forget the Trade Register Notification (Gewerbeanmeldung)

Your new German company is finally registered? Gratulations! But you are far from being done. Under German law (see section 14 Gewerbeordnung, i.e. German Trade Regulation), the commencement of a business activity must be notified in writing (Gewerbeanmeldung) to the local Ordnungsamt (Trades Office), which is a department of the municipal government, for example the city of Munich. This notification obligation also applies to any change in the business (e.g. move, modification to the nature…
Bernhard Schmeilzl
October 31, 2014
Business in GermanyGerman Corporate LawGerman LawStarting Business

How to read a German Commercial Register Extract

German Company Register provides reliable, up to date information on all German businesses But it is a difficult read, even for native speakers. Every German company, partnership and association must be officially registered in the Handelsregister (Commercial Register). In contrast to England, where this information is collected centrally by Companies House, Germany uses a decentralised system. The "original" records of a company are kept at the respective local District Court (Amtsgericht) where the company has…
Bernhard Schmeilzl
September 25, 2014
Business in GermanyGerman Corporate Law

English Solicitor joins Graf & Partners legal team

German clients and UK expats who would like to see an English solicitor for legal advice no longer need to travel to London or content themselves with mere phone conversations. From now on, clients can meet personally with English solicitor Elissa Jelowicki, who has joined Graf & Partners, a Munich based German law firm specialising in British-German legal matters. Elissa has both British and Canadian nationality, studied in Scotland (Edinburgh University) and London (BBP Law…
Bernhard Schmeilzl
September 18, 2014