Our Franco-German Relations team provides comprehensive advice and assistance to German companies conducting business in France or interested in setting up an establishment here. The team’s lawyers are naturally all fluent in German (which is actually the mother tongue of some). With their training and experience, they are perfectly aware of both countries’ economic, social, and cultural environments and are therefore able to understand the way their German interlocutors think and thus to anticipate their clients’ needs and expectations.
As business consultants, we apprehend the law as an instrument serving a company’s communication and strategic purposes, i.e., in this case, a creator of value liable to further the establishment and development of German groups on the French market, especially in the industrial and service sectors.
The Franco-German Relations team works closely with the law firm’s other teams (in particular the Company Law / Mergers & Acquisitions / Private Equity, Employment, Tax, Commercial Litigation, and Bankruptcy Law teams) in order to benefit from their strong expertise in their respective fields.
What We Do
• We counsel companies looking to set up an establishment in France: defining business orientations and choosing the appropriate structure (company, simple branch, employee posting, etc.).
• We help organize distribution networks: drawing up and negotiating distribution, franchise, and agency contracts, defining business co-operation and pricing policies.
• We help set up subsidiaries: advising on the most appropriate form according to French-specific tax and labour constraints (private limited company, public limited company, simplified joint-stock company, EIG, etc.).
• We take care of all legal aspects of corporate life in the normal course of business (approval of annual accounts, changes in management, capital development, formalities and other steps taken with the French commercial courts and competent authorities, etc.).
• We provide advice on employment matters: organizing management, taking care of the company’s ordinary labour-law needs (drawing up contracts, dealing with the specific issues posed by human resources management), assisting with individual dismissals (judicial litigation, out-of-court settlements), planning reorganisation operations, and liaising with the employees’ representatives.
• We represent companies in litigation before the civil, commercial, and arbitration courts (independent arbitration proceedings, arbitration proceedings before the ICC or the Franco-German Chamber of Commerce – the new arbitration rules of which were co-authored by Christian Connor, a permanent member of its arbitration centre).
• Reorganisation, from both the company-law and the labour-law standpoint, of the French establishments of a European leader in the handling equipment industry: elaboration and implementation of a severance plan (PSE) for a mass lay-off
• Labour-law counsel to the subsidiary of a car parts manufacturer following the group’s reorganisation in France and the transfer of many employees
• Reorganisation of the French management of a German tour operator
• Regime optimization, from a tax-law and labour-law standpoint, for the managers of the French subsidiaries of several German groups
• Reorganisation, from a labour-law and corporate standpoint, of international groups in the chemical, metallurgy, life sciences, and packaging industries
• Representation of international groups and their insurers in judicial proceedings relating to industrial claims involving technical expert appraisals and criminal proceedings
• Counsel to a major German group in the chemical industry setting up a joint venture in France
• Counsel to French industrial or service companies setting up establishments and investing in Germany