Dispute Resolution

Developing strategies,
asserting interests.

Complex economic disputes present a huge challenge for businesses. Disputes are often unavoidable, and as such are part of the nature of doing business. Globalisation and cross-border business issues increase the complexity of such disputes.

For both emerging or existing international disputes, we resolve the often economically and technically complex issues together with our clients and evaluate the opportunities and risks of legal proceedings in Luxembourg and abroad. Our advice provides customised and legally watertight solutions. Our experience and expertise allow us to attain the best possible results for our clients. With this approach we proceed in an efficient and solution-orientated way. Your goals are our benchmark. We approach problems from your perspective. 

Our focus is on advice for post-M&A disputes, corporate disputes and joint venture disputes, commercial and rights of sale, IP/IT, energy, real estate and building law, plant engineering, public sector, banking litigation, employment law, tax law, as well as succession and restructuring in family businesses. In order to provide our clients with the best and most efficient advice, our experienced litigation lawyers will put together a tailor-made team of experienced specialists from various practice groups as needed.

We represent our national and international clients both out-of-court and before national courts or arbitration courts. We work closely with renowned international law firms to resolve cross-border business issues.

Key areas of expertise

As experienced litigation lawyers, we assert or defend our clients’ claims. The conduct of legal proceedings in national courts or arbitration courts is our area of expertise. However, if possible, we use all kinds of alternative dispute resolution (ADR) techniques  such as mediation,

conciliation proceedings, conciliatory proceedings, adjudication or arbitration. Furthermore, several of our specialist arbitration lawyers are themselves practising arbitrators.

Litigation
As legal representatives, we represent the interests of our clients in complex legal disputes before the Luxembourg courts. We also prepare second opinions on the chances of success of legal disputes, support our clients in litigation-related public relations and coordinate parallel proceedings in different jurisdictions. 

Arbitration proceedings
As party representatives, we represent our clients in national and international arbitration proceedings according to the rules of the major arbitration organisations (for example DIS, ICC, LCIA, SCC, Swiss Rules, VIAC and CEPANI) and in ad-hoc proceedings. Furthermore, several of our specialist arbitration lawyers are regularly appointed as arbitrators. 

Alternative dispute resolution (ADR)/mediation
Our understanding of efficient conflict advice encompasses systems of alternative dispute resolution (mediation, conciliation proceedings, adjudication or arbitration) that can save time and money in resolving conflicts. We work with our clients towards the suitable conflict resolution strategy and provide support through the necessary stages. 

Interim legal protection
In the case of impending legal violations and/or asset management adversely affecting our clients, we represent our clients in the proceedings for interim legal protection. 

Enforcement
After the successful completion of court or arbitration proceedings, we can enforce our client’s claims. We have extensive experience in enforcing state judgments and arbitration awards within the context of foreclosure. Our advice focuses on the assertion of cross-border rulings within the scope of European Union law as well as on the declaration of enforceability of arbitration awards. 

M&A transactions are always subject to complex disputes. Especially after the closing of corporate transactions, disputes often arise over the adjustment of purchase price clauses, legal warranties and guarantees or other “post-closing disputes”. We actively help our clients through conflicts with their contracting partner and support them in upholding or defending their claims. 

Disputes over the extent of rights and obligations within companies or joint ventures can arise from partnership agreements. Fundamental differences of opinion can lead to a stalemate, which may threaten the very existence of the company or joint venture by bringing its economic activity to a standstill. We stand up for our clients and develop solution-orientated strategies to eliminate the problem. If out-of-court dispute resolution is out of the question, we protect the rights of our clients in the case of litigious disputes (actions for rescission, actions for annulment, actions for declaratory judgments). 

Ongoing globalisation means that international business disputes are on the increase worldwide. The development of international businesses, changing regulatory requirements, increasing due diligence and complex cross-border transactions are only a few of the causes. We proactively support our clients through all stages of national and international dispute resolution in the business and commercial environment by providing innovative solutions to their problems. 

We help our clients choose a suitable distribution structure for their goods and services and conduct the necessary contract negotiations with authorised distributors, agents or franchises. We recognise the potential conflicts between our clients and their contractual partners early and develop strategies to avoid disputes. We also represent our clients in litigious conflicts before national or arbitration courts. 

We have a thorough understanding of the intricacies of the technology and media sectors. Our IP/IT practice group have many years of expertise and industry knowledge. We develop creative approaches covering the whole spectrum of intellectual property and the closely related legal fields, including competition law. We have successful litigation experience in trademark law, design law, copyright and competition law disputes as well as with disputes including infringement of personal rights, particularly relating to protection and commercialisation. We see ourselves as business partners and proactively support our clients through the development, licensing and sale of their software and other technology. 

With climate change on everyone’s mind, renewable energy is a market that is growing steadily, especially wind energy. Storage technology plays an important role in the energy transition. We are the experts in the fields of energy production and storage, grid and power line expansion and energy supply, M&A transactions, project financing and electric vehicles and the construction of charging points, making us your ideal business partner. Our extensive knowledge of the fields of renewable and conventional energies enable us to develop tailored conflict resolution strategies for our clients. With our interdisciplinary expertise and years of experience in the field of renewable energy, we are not only a business partner with legal and economic know-how.

Our clients include building contractors, investors and landlords, general contractors and subcontractors as well as architects, engineers and commercial tenants. Thanks to our comprehensive and extensive experience, we are able to understand and assert the interests of all the individual parties involved in major building projects. We develop a professional conflict management strategy for our clients to cover all eventualities in the real estate industry. Where disputes cannot be resolved, we advise our clients on complex construction and large-scale project development litigation, asserting their claims in proceedings for the preservation of evidence as well as in arbitration proceedings. 

The conception, implementation and operation of national and international large-scale construction projects provide enormous potential for conflict due to the large number of participants (“multi contracting”) and the long duration of the project. Even at the contracting stage we advise our clients on modern and workable options for dispute resolution (in particular “multi-party dispute clauses” and “dispute boards”). Should a conflict arise between the parties, we support our clients in the choice of litigation or an out-of-court conflict resolution. If alternative dispute resolution approaches fail, such as mediation, conciliation, arbitration and adjudication, we represent our clients before national and arbitration courts. 

We have in-depth knowledge of the public sector and the relevant public law framework. We provide comprehensive advice to businesses, including public authorities and private individuals in planning and environmental law, subsidy law and regulation, and we also represent our clients in proceedings before administrative and constitutional courts. The focus of our advisory services is on building regulations and planning law, in the defence of infrastructure projects, in procedures for reviewing the legality of land-use plans and environmental permits, as well as in procurement and state aid. In public procurement law, we use our special know-how to represent public clients and bidders before the public procurement tribunals, the competent senates of the Higher Regional Courts, the EU Commission and the European Court of Justice. 

Banking and financial disputes are often not only complex in terms of substance. In procedural law, there are a number of special strategies that must also be observed, such as those necessary for safeguarding reputation and avoiding unfavourable precedents. We have a thorough understanding of banking and financial litigation and have extensive experience in the drafting and application of all known dispute resolution mechanisms, from structuring collective actions (including investor test cases and test actions for declaratory judgement), to alternative dispute resolution mechanisms and arbitration proceedings. 

For us, employment law dispute resolution begins with the forward-looking structuring of employment relationships. We advise and represent businesses in and out of court in their disputes with employees – in particular in termination of employment – and support them in the planning and implementation of relevant strategies. We assist managing directors and executive board members in the negotiation of service contracts as well as in connection with severance agreements and compensation disputes.

In matters relating to corporate constitution, we represent employers in labour court decision-making procedures and – in particular in large-scale redundancies and restructuring – out of court in negotiations with works councils and trade unions.

When negotiating a reconciliation of interests, a severance plan or a collective agreement, we represent the interests of our clients in a targeted manner with industry and company knowledge and achieve viable agreements. With valuable practical experience and good contacts with experienced arbitration committee officers, we can take charge of unified company-side appraisal procedures to provide economically viable solutions. 

In tax law, we support our clients in all disputes with tax authorities. We develop negotiating lines in disputed tax audits, assist in the filing of appeals or prepare tax rulings. We represent our clients in litigation right up to the Federal Fiscal Court or European Court of Justice. Our tax litigation team draws on years of experience in tax disputes. 

We advise family businesses and their managing directors as well as the entrepreneurial family itself in preventing conflicts during the handover process of the company to the next generation. If there are already ongoing disputes, we find respectful solutions. In situations where restructuring is required, we ensure a stable group of shareholders, which is a key success factor in convincing other stakeholders to embrace the idea of restructuring. Using mediation methods, together with the entrepreneurial family, we clarify which values are important for the company. Of course, this includes keeping the business within the family and securing jobs at the local site. 

© GSK Stockmann 2020