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Portugal’s start-up appeal goes far beyond subsidies and summits

MV Conversations with João Macedo de Vitorino With Lisbon touted as one of Europe’s Top 5 Start-Up Hubs, MV Conversations looks at the realities of Portugal’s Start-Up ecosystem and its true potential going forwards. ‘Start-up’ is a recent buzzword in Portugal. For the past few years, from the Government to the co-working spaces, people are embracing entrepreneurism and working towards living up to the hype of being one of the most promising innovation ecosystems in the world. With Lisbon having recently hosted the Web Summit for the 4th consecutive year, bringing together investors and start-ups from around the world, the buzzword [...]

Juror or arbitrator?

Benjamin K. Riley and Robert H. Bunzel The authors are principals with Bartko, Zankel, Bunzel & Miller in San Francisco. Arbitration: We read about judicial preference for it every day.  Mandatory arbitration clauses force numerous cases formerly heard by juries out of the court system. Given the U.S. Supreme Court’s expansive interpretation of the Federal Arbitration Act, that’s not likely to change any time soon. What does this mean for trial lawyers? While efficient arbitration proceedings tried to experienced arbitrators offer significant benefits, the inherent bias of arbitration in favor of commercial status quo suggests thinking twice before opting out of [...]

Why your Intellectual Property is in safe hands in Portugal

Quick and simple registration systems can save your IP from falling into the wrong hands and ensure your business and your brand are protected in Portugal. In today's world a business’s brand is as important as its product or services. And the intellectual creations behind it are what gives a business its unique competitive edge. The importance of protecting your Intellectual Property (IP) assets cannot be undervalued. Neglecting to do so can put your business at risk, affecting essential core services and your long-term viability. Are my IP rights covered in Portugal? Yes, it has never been quicker or easier to [...]

Record Fine in Germany (GDPR)

Dr. Stefan Brink, State Data Protection Officer for the State of Baden-Württemberg, announced in a press release back on April 8, 2019, that “2019 will be the year of inspections.” Ever since the GDPR was introduced on May 25, 2018, it was always just a matter of time before data protection agencies would begin conducting detailed inspections, and reacting to user complaints, as well as, sanctioning data protection violations. The Welt am Sonntag newspaper reported in May of this year that 75 fines, adding up to 449,000.00 €, had already been issued. The 195,407.00 € fine issued by the Berlin Data [...]

New EU Rules on Working Conditions

The recently adopted Directive 2019/1152 on Transparent and Predictable Working Conditions (“Directive”) introduces additional minimum rights for workers as well as new rules on the information to be provided by employers in regards to the essential elements of work. Scope of Directive The Directive does not create a uniform definition of “worker”. Instead, workers shall be defined by the nature of the employment relationship under national law, collective agreements and common practice with reference to the rulings of the European Court of Justice. Basically, within the scope of the Directive fall all individuals working more than 3 hours per week over [...]

Ambitious labour reform injects security and permanence into market (Portugal)

With a goal of tackling precarious temporary working conditions, increasing job security and boosting permanent hirings, the recent reform to Portugal’s Labour Code goes a step further with measures to rebalance segmentation in the labour market. For Guilherme Machado Dray, this is the most ambitious reform in Portugal’s democracy, strengthening the country’s so-called ‘decent work’ agenda and setting a precedent, in particular, for the treatment of Portugal’s emigrating young talent. “The whole idea behind the reform is the belief that precariousness and non-permanent working conditions hinder career progression, increase the risk of poverty, decrease growth, undermine competitiveness of corporations and affect [...]

Immigration changes in the UK

“Attracting the brightest and the best” When the UK’s current Government came into power they set out to reduce net immigration to the tens of thousands. They proceeded to close in 2012 visa routes for students to remain in the UK to seek or take up employment without sponsorship. Subsequent statistics have shown that students who couldn’t secure sponsorship, as a result, left the UK for destinations such as USA or moved to another course of study. Despite these challenges the UK still remains the number one destination for post graduate students particularly in Science and Technology. In a bid to [...]

Facebook’s “Like” Button on a Website

Social media plugins.  Please, take care with any plugins, e.g. YouTube, Vimeo, or Twitter plugins, that you may have on your websites. Social media has become an essential public-relations and customer-acquisition tool for many companies, especially through the inclusion of tools, such as Facebook's Like-Button plugin, on a company's website, which allows the visitor to express their satisfaction with a site on their Facebook profile by clicking on the embedded button.  Companies using such tools should be aware of the data protection implications of the European Court's decision, Az. C-40/17 from July 29, 2019. Data protection problems arise because some social [...]

Labor law: Germany passes a new law to prevent illegal employment and social benefit fraud

Background In the light of significant shortfalls in social security contributions, a loss of taxation income resulting in reduced protection and decreased social security claims of affected persons, and the simultaneous distortion of competition, the German federal government has aimed to strengthen the Illegal Employment Audit Division (Finanzkontrolle Schwarzarbeit) of the German Customs Authorities (Zollverwaltung, FKS) in order to put more effective measures in place to prevent “illegal employment, social benefit abuse and illicit labor”. The federal government’s draft bill of 20 February 2019 ties in with a law passed in the 18th legislative period which strengthens the control of illicit [...]

Taxation in Portugal made easy

Why you shouldn’t be scared of Portuguese Tax laws. With a regime focused on investment and attracting new business, as well as incentives for new tax residents, it may be time to consider taking your taxes to Portugal. While no one likes doing their taxes, the questions of ‘how’, ‘where ‘and ‘how much’ you’re going to be taxed is surely at the top of priority lists. Portugal’s Government has also given priority to its tax regime to make it an attractive and cost-effective place for potential investors and incoming workers, as well as companies doing business in or via Portugal. There [...]