The Legal 500

Austria

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Editorial

Legal market overview

Two notable consequences of the financial crisis are visible in the Austrian legal market and have informed the flow of work: firstly, the volume of contentious work has increased and is keeping many law firms busy and, secondly, regulations have been tightened in a number of areas and financial supervision has been increased. This has led to a steady flow of mandates, especially on the compliance side and particularly for banking regulatory, tax and employment practices. The economic climate has also created a stage for large restructuring cases such as the Hypo Group Alpe Adria case, which remains a prominent theme of the Austrian market, and M&A transactions as corporates continue to sell non-core assets. Private client practices have been affected by changes to tax legislation with the effect that private foundations have lost their appeal and firms have been shifting their focus towards other forms of asset protection, such as trusts and family holding structures.

The rise in instructions for smaller, more flexible law firms continues to be a trend and has led to the establishment of a number of specialised boutiques. Perhaps the most notable move was in the dispute resolution arena. Wolf Theiss’ former head of arbitration Florian Haugeneder and Bettina Knötzl left the firm together with former counsels Katrin Hanschitz and Axel Thoß in January 2016 to found dispute resolution boutique Knoetzl Haugeneder Netal. Changes in other practice areas are no less noteworthy. Axel Reidlinger, formerly head of competition law at Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, founded Reidlinger Schatzmann Rechtsanwälte GmbH together with Gassauer-Fleissner’s co-founder Hanno Schatzmann. Founding partner and media lawyer Christoph Leon left Fiebinger Polak Leon & Partner Rechtsanwälte GmbH to work independently. Competition lawyer Christian Mayer and energy expert Thomas Starlinger also left Fiebinger Polak Leon & Partner Rechtsanwälte GmbH in February 2015 to found Starlinger Mayer Rechtsanwälte GmbH. Rudolf Pendl and Gerald Mair established IP boutique Pendl Mair Attorneys at Law after leaving Zeiner & Zeiner. Brauneis Klauser Prändl Rechtsanwälte GmbH rebranded as bkp Rechtsanwälte.

Binder Grösswang
www.bindergroesswang.at

Binder Grösswang’s successful strategy is based on outstanding professional expertise combined with a teamwork approach. More than 80 highly specialised professionals work together in teams to give the firm’s clients outstanding support in international and domestic mergers and acquisitions, financing, and capital market transactions, and to preserve their interests in court proceedings and arbitrations. Binder Grösswang’s top priority is to act as a partner to its clients. The firm has gained an excellent reputation for its sophisticated and business-oriented approach and individually tailored solutions.

Firms in the spotlight

Lugger | Bankler
www.lugger-bankler.at

Lugger | Bankler is a modern, independent Austrian business law firm. The firm provides clients with personal, individual and efficient legal advice to the highest professional standards. The firm advises national and international commercial entities, as well as public institutions in the areas of business and commercial law. It also advises private clients on commercial issues. The firm’s major practice areas are corporate, M&A, commercial, banking and finance, and dispute resolution. Further it focuses on environmental law and energy law.

Press releases

The latest news direct from law firms. If you would like to submit press releases for your firm, send an email request to

Legal Developments in Austria

Legal Developments and updates from the leading lawyers in each jurisdiction. To contribute, send an email request to
  • Austria: Hyperlinking to online-radio broadcasts

    The relationship between hyperlinking and copyright is much debated. Although recent decisions of the ECJ have shed some light on the question, many questions still remain when hyperlinking to copyrighted content should be considered a copyright infringement. Some of these questions have been addressed by the Austrian Supreme Court in a recent judgment (Decision by the Supreme Court dated 23 February 2016, 4 Ob 249/15v). read more...
  • Personal Data Protection for Serbian Entrepreneurs

    Serbia does not currently have any separate regulations in place in respect of protection of "personal data" pertaining to legal entities. It does regulate the protection of natural persons' data, however, without any particular mention of entrepreneurs. read more...
  • Proposed amendments to the Czech Labour Code - Are they really important?

    The Czech Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs (the "MLSA") recently submitted a new proposal for interdepartmental comment, that will modify the current Labour Code [1]. read more...
  • How about a New Arbitration Act in Hungary?

    The Hungarian arbitration Act (Act LXXI of 1994 on arbitration, “the Act”) has barely “turned 22” and the pressure to replace it with new legislation has popped up. Considering the current, rapid reform of effective laws in Hungary – meaning that relatively new legislation which has been in force for only five to ten years has been set aside to introduce new legislation –the push to introduce new law on arbitration law is no surprise. read more...
  • A Bid for Strong Arbitrator

    Discussions of arbitrators’ powers have riveted the international arbitration community. Practitioners increasingly face situations where arbitrators seem cautious and reluctant to rule on procedural issues. read more...
  • Hungary: Update - first gun jumping decision swiftly followed by three more

    This competition newsletter is an update to our previous insight on the first gun jumping decision of the Hungarian Competition Authority ("HCA"), where we set out the background to the Hungarian suspension clause and the calculation of fines in more detail. read more...
  • Insolvency / Restructuring in Montenegro

    Bankruptcy and reorganization are the two primary procedures available for solving a collective action problem in dealing with financially troubled debtors, and both are regulated by the Montenegrin Insolvency Act. read more...
  • Austria: Invitations to hunting trips - the criminal court's next trophy?

    The woodcock mating season has just ended and deer-hunting season has already begun. Are officials allowed to accept an invitation to a hunting trip, or should they be paying the shooting fees and other costs?  read more...
  • First gun jumping decision of the Hungarian Competition Authority

    The Hungarian Competition Authority ("HCA") has imposed a fine of HUF 1 million (approx EUR 3,200) on CEE Holding Group Limited and Olympic International Holdings Limited, for implementing a concentration prior to authorisation by the HCA (cf Vj/145/2015., the decision may be found here ). read more...
  • Turkey: First Personal Data Protection Act in force

    The long-awaited Personal Data Protection Act no. 6698 ( Kişisel Verilerin Korunması Kanunu ) (the " DPA " or " Law ") was approved by the Turkish Parliament on 24 March 2016, was published in the Official Gazette on 7 April 2016, and hence came into force.  read more...

Press Releases in Austria

The latest news direct from law firms. If you would like to submit press releases for your firm, send an email request to
  • Austria: Schoenherr advises banking consortium on issuance of EUR 500 million mortgage covered bond

    Schoenherr advised an international banking consortium comprising Commerzbank Ak-tiengesellschaft (technical lead), Barclays Bank plc, Crédit Agricole CIB and CaixaBank SA as Joint Lead Managers on the successful issuance of a EUR 500 million fixed-rate mortgage covered bond ( Pfandbrief ) by Vienna-based Erste Group Bank AG (closing date: 9 September 2015). The bond was placed with institutional investors and listed on the Second Regulated Market of the Vienna Stock Exchange.  read more...
  • Austria: JUVE confirms Schoenherr's leading role in Austrian legal market and among corporate/M&A pr

    JUVE, the premier German-language legal business publication, ranks Schoenherr as the  leading law firm in Austria  and recognises the firm's Corporate/M&A practice for being at the very  apex of the country's transactional practitioners . In the newly-released 2015 edition of its annual 150-page handbook on corporate law firms in Austria, JUVE identifies Schoenherr as having generated the highest revenues among the country’s 15 largest law firms, thanks not least to Schoenherr's advisory role in a large selection of the headline transactions and restructurings during 2014/15.  read more...
  • Austria: Schoenherr advises Allianz Capital Partners on its first acquisition of wind parks in Austr

    Schoenherr advised Allianz Capital Partners (ACP) on its acquisition of four wind parks in the Austrian state of Lower Austria from ImWind, one of the country’s largest wind farm operators, with a portfolio of 320 MW in operation. read more...
  • Austria: Schoenherr advises UNION Investment on prominent real estate transactions in Vienna

    Schoenherr has advised UNION Investment Real Estate GmbH, one of Europe's leading property investment management companies, on several prominent real estate acquisitions that the Hamburg-based group has made in Vienna. In addition to space2move, Schoenherr has also advised UNION Investment. read more...
  • Austria: Schoenherr advises Cimpress on its acquisition of Austria's Druck.at

    Schoenherr advised Cimpress N.V., a world leader in mass customization, on its acquisition of Druck.at, one of the leading web-to-print businesses in Austria. The transaction, which was announced on 18 March 2015, closed on 17 April 2015 following the successful achievement of various closing conditions including Austrian antitrust clearance. The acquisition supports Cimpress’ strategy of building a software-enabled operational platform that aggregates and optimizes the supply chain and production of mass customized products such as signage, printing, apparel and promotional products. read more...
  • CEE: Schoenherr named Leading Law Firm in South East Europe by Chambers

    Schoenherr has been recognized as " South East Europe Law Firm of the Year " (2015) by the renowned legal publisher Chambers and Partners . Schoenherr lawyers Monica Cojocaru (partner; Bucharest), Miloš Laković (partner, Moravčević, Vojnović & partneri OAD in cooperation with Schoenherr; Belgrade) and Marko Prušnik (partner; Ljubljana) accepted the award on behalf of the firm at the Chambers Europe Awards event held this past Friday evening at Amsterdam’s Hotel Okura. read more...
  • Austria: Arbitration expert Leon Kopecký joins Schoenherr as Counsel

    Leon Kopecký has joined Schoenherr, a leading full-service law firm in Central and Eastern Europe, as Counsel in March 2015. Mr Kopecký focuses on international commercial and investment arbitration, international litigation, and compliance matters. His clients are international firms in the construction, raw materials, infrastructure, finance, fashion and health care industries. He regularly advises clients on complex investment matters. read more...
  • fwp advises UniCredit Bank Austria AG on the sale of Immobilien Holding portfolio

    Vienna, 16 January 2015. Business law firm Fellner Wratzfeld & Partners (fwp) advises UniCredit Bank Austria AG on the multi-stage structured sale of the real estate portfolio it holds via Immobilien Holding GmbH. read more...
  • fwp advises HETA on individual applications for review of special Hypo legislation

    Fellner Wratzfeld & Partner Rechtsanwaelte GmbH (fwp) represents HETA Asset Resolution AG (formerly HYPO Alpe-Adria Bank International AG) in connection with the judicial review proceedings before the Austrian Constitutional Court following the implementation of special Hypo legislation. The Constitutional Court has now rejected all individual applications filed by Austrian and international investors as inadmissible. Read more...
  • fwp advises on stabilising Pfandbriefbank after HETA debt moratorium

    Fellner Wratzfeld & Partners (fwp) successfully provided legal advice to HYPO NOE, the association of mortgage banks of the Austrian Provinces and Pfandbriefbank in connection with financing repayments to be made for specific bond issues, thus ensuring the stability of both Pfandbriefbank and the mortgage banks guaranteeing such repayments.