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Press releases and law firm thought leadership

This page is dedicated to keeping readers informed of the latest news and thought leadership articles from law firms across the globe.

If your firm wishes to publish press releases or articles, please contact Shehab Khurshid on +44 (0) 207 396 5689 or shehab.khurshid@legalease.co.uk

 

Legal Developments Worldwide

Articles contributed by Gauci-Maistre Xynou

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Vacancy - Senior Corporate Lawyer

October 2019 - Corporate & Commercial. Legal Developments by Gauci-Maistre Xynou.

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The Senior Corporate Lawyer, who will be reporting to Partners, will be working with both the firm’s legal team as well as the financial services team. The successful candidate will be requested to show initiative, take on certain responsibilities within the firm, work in a multinational environment and will immediately be given the opportunity to further advance their career within the law firm.

Autonomous shipping – Caution required to avert the blind leading the blind

September 2019 - Transport. Legal Developments by Gauci-Maistre Xynou.

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The lure of unmanned transport services is no longer a science fiction scenario but a living reality.

Crewless merchant ships are already operating along rivers in Norway, Finland, Singapore and China. The advantages are plentiful because they reduce crewing and fuel consumption costs, increase the safety of life and cargo as well as allow for more efficient use of space in ship design.

Re-filing Trademarks: A Case of DĂ©jĂ  Vu?

September 2019 - Intellectual Property. Legal Developments by Gauci-Maistre Xynou.

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Trade marks give a face to a product which enable us identify a brand. As consumers, we take them for granted even though they punctuate memories of our daily lives. How many of us ever think of the creative and strategic thinking that goes into their composition? In contrast, we are more familiar with trade mark infringement. And what is breaking news are the risks of re-filing new applications for the same trade mark that should not be glossed over. 

The Predicted End of Fiat Currencies

April 2019 - TMT ( Technology, Media & Telecoms). Legal Developments by Gauci-Maistre Xynou.

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Billionaire and crypto investor Tim Draper envisages a radical overhaul in payment systems; predicting that cryptocurrencies will replace fiat currencies within the next five years.

The Way Forward: Gender Neutrality and Gender Inclusion

April 2019 - EU & Competition. Legal Developments by Gauci-Maistre Xynou.

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The principle of equality between men and women is a fundamental value constantly on the European Union’s agenda.  Ample EU institutes, programmes, and legislation provide for gender equality, and case law of the Court of Justice of the European Union (‘CJEU’) reaffirms the progress made in this respect. On a member state level, the enactment of gender neutral laws (particularly in the fields of inheritance law, marriage law, and employment law), may be considered as having reached its culmination in a number of EU member states, in the legal recognition of non-binary people. In turn, the European Parliament is now actively seeking to bring language evolution at par with gender inclusive legislation.

Immutability in a smart contract: a blessing or a curse?

April 2019 - TMT ( Technology, Media & Telecoms). Legal Developments by Gauci-Maistre Xynou.

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Smart contracts are contracts which are written in computer code on a blockchain according to the terms set out by the parties to such contract and which are self-executing in the manner pre-determined by said code.  

Call for AML Regulation for Cryptocurrencies

April 2019 - TMT ( Technology, Media & Telecoms). Legal Developments by Gauci-Maistre Xynou.

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Ever since the creation of Bitcoin, cryptocurrencies have been applauded and welcomed for constituting an innovative method of payment without any recourse to financial institutions and their entailing bureaucracy.  While honest individuals rejoiced at cryptocurrencies’ legitimate benefits; ranging from an increased degree of privacy and confidentiality to less transactional costs, cybercriminals saluted the decentralised networks and perceived anonymity behind cryptocurrencies for presenting them with the perfect crypto cleansing opportunity to launder money in an unprecedented and largely unregulated sector in the financial industry.

Blockchain – Sifting Sense from Sensation

April 2019 - TMT ( Technology, Media & Telecoms). Legal Developments by Gauci-Maistre Xynou.

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The whirling hype of blockchain and the race to benefit from its instant click efficiency and spiralling profitability continues to generate truckloads of excitement. It is rocking captains of industry and the maritime sector is on the front line of all the buzz.

But what really lies behind the seductive spin?

Better Legal Insights Through Technology

April 2019 - TMT ( Technology, Media & Telecoms). Legal Developments by Gauci-Maistre Xynou.

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The legal profession has evolved at an unprecedented speed. Technology and new emerging tools harnessing artificial intelligence and data visualization all help legal professionals now uncover valuable insights. It is almost impossible to attend a conference today and not encounter multiple discussions about artificial intelligence (AI). Many in the legal profession have begun to assume—that AI is the future of law. While still in its infancy, artificial intelligence-powered tools are at a point where new insights are now possible.

BLOCKCHAIN TECHNOLOGY VS. GDPR: CONFLICT RESOLUTION REQUIRED

March 2019 - TMT ( Technology, Media & Telecoms). Legal Developments by Gauci-Maistre Xynou.

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Authors;

Dr Jean-Pie Gauci-Maistre

Despoina Xynou

Dr Daniela Gaffarena

The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) as well as blockchain technology may both be lauded for having reached evolutionary milestones in their respective fields of data privacy and innovative technologies. Combining these fields is however giving rise to unprecedented concerns. Although GDPR and blockchain technology protect data, ironically data protection compliance is turning out to be significantly challenging for government agencies and private companies alike when seeking to make use of hashing technology. It is pertinent to observe that the GDPR was drafted prior to blockchain’s insurgent impact in the digital world hence any tensions between the two had not as yet been envisaged.

DRONES WITHOUT GROANS

March 2019 - TMT ( Technology, Media & Telecoms). Legal Developments by Gauci-Maistre Xynou.

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Soaring. Flying. Whirling. Hovering. Diving. Landing. All at the press of a button.

Civil drones are the 21st century dancers in the sky. Tech savvy consumers have fallen in love with them and the romance is set to endure as technological advances have jaw-dropping models hit the market every few months. DJI Mavic 2, Mavic Air, Phantom 4 Pro, Inspire 2 and Walkera Voyager 5 have fingers itching and pulses racing for more.

How beneficial owners registers aim to curb money laundering and tax evasion

March 2019 - Tax & Private Client. Legal Developments by Gauci-Maistre Xynou.

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With more complicated company structures being used, it has become increasingly more difficult to establish who the ultimate beneficial owners of entities are. In light of the new regulation, do you believe that the Ultimate Beneficial Ownership (UBO) Register can help in any way to prevent financial crime?

Cross-border insolvency: making a case of harmonised insolvency laws across the EU

March 2019 - Corporate & Commercial. Legal Developments by Gauci-Maistre Xynou.

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Cross-border insolvency law has been gaining importance in the EU’s legal system over the past few decades. Harmonising insolvency laws is a difficult process as the legal framework interacts with a myriad of domestic laws. 

Gearing up for a technological revolution

March 2019 - TMT ( Technology, Media & Telecoms). Legal Developments by Gauci-Maistre Xynou.

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Bitcoin has raised the question of whether computer code, rather than a central bank, should control the money supply. But is it desirable for society to allow a digital money system which enables its users to operate outside the remit of the law, unlike physical cash which is more regulated.

Guidelines in Relation to Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT)

March 2019 - TMT ( Technology, Media & Telecoms). Legal Developments by Gauci-Maistre Xynou.

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Guidelines concerning the taxation of DLT Assets under the Income Tax Act, the VAT Act and the Duty and Documents and Transfers Act were published by the Commissioner for Revenue.

The Contemporary Company Secretary

March 2019 - Corporate & Commercial. Legal Developments by Gauci-Maistre Xynou.

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Although constantly evolving, in more recent years, the role of the Company Secretary has undergone a significant shift both in the way it is perceived externally and also in its actual fulfilment within an organisation. Whereas historically defined rather restrictively as mainly administrative in nature, the Company Secretary is now expected to fulfil a much broader brief. This change has mostly come about as a result of the need for a more effective corporate governance framework which promotes increased transparency and accountability within the organisation. In the wake of corporate scandals the likes of Maxwell, Enron and Polly Peck spanning over the last few decades, many changes have been brought about in the corporate field across different jurisdictions.

The Key Employee Initiative Launched - A Fast Tracked Single Permit Scheme

March 2019 - Corporate & Commercial. Legal Developments by Gauci-Maistre Xynou.

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Identity Malta Agency launched the Key Employee Initiative (KEI) providing a fast-tracked service to highly-specialized Third-Country Nationals who are employed in Malta. The scheme will facilitate the issuing of work/residence permits to prospective key employees within five working days from the date of submission of the applications.

MFSA publishes FAQ document about The Virtual Financial Assets Framework

March 2019 - Intellectual Property. Legal Developments by Gauci-Maistre Xynou.

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The Malta Financial Services Authority has published a document outlining frequently asked questions in relation to the Virtual Financial Assets Framework. It provides key information on the framework itself, classification of DLT assets, VFA agents, Initial Virtual Financial Asset Offerings, VFA service providers,

AML/CFT requirements and transitory provisions.

New Individual Investor Programme Agency set up in Malta

March 2019 - Corporate & Commercial. Legal Developments by Gauci-Maistre Xynou.

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Legal Notice 384 of 2018, Individual Investor Programme of the Republic of Malta (Amendment) Regulations, 2018, and Legal Notice 385 of 2018, Malta Individual Investor Programme Agency (Establishment) (Amendment) Order, 2018 were published on the 16th November 2018 in the Government Gazette, with the aim of setting up a new and separate agency which will be responsible for the Malta citizenship by investment programme. 

Blockchain: The Potential to change the entire economic world

March 2019 - TMT ( Technology, Media & Telecoms). Legal Developments by Gauci-Maistre Xynou.

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The shipping industry has been given a fresh opportunity to strengthen the security of their data that could spell the end of paper documentation.  Blockchain technology promises to revolutionize container logistics by connecting the supply chain in a way the industry has never seen before. Should the technology enter operation it could also bring annual cost savings, eliminate time-consuming processes, as well as create trust and partnership to all parties involved. Blockchain establishes a shared, immutable record of data which is encrypted and inherently resistant to modification, requiring confirmation from all participants in the network before any changes can be made.

The General Data Protection Regulation

February 2019 - TMT ( Technology, Media & Telecoms). Legal Developments by Gauci-Maistre Xynou.

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the right to be forgotten in connection with the Financial Services Sector by Gauci-Maistre Xynou

Europe’s landmark data privacy law, GDPR, came into effect last May. What counts as personal data under the GDPR?

The General Data Protection Regulation, better known as ‘GDPR’ has at its heart, the notion of ‘Personal Data’, defined in article 4 as any information which can lead to the identification of a natural person. Cyphered Information which can still lead to the identification of a person falls within the scope of this article.

Personal data can vary from the most indisputable forms of identification, such as; the name, surname, home address, date of birth, phone numbers, eye and hair colour, tax information, religious beliefs, character traits, email address (containing the name and/or surname), identification card number extending to the Internet Protocol Address, location data setting on one’s phone, as well as data held by medical experts. It is imperative to note that one cannot assume that a simple name and surname falls within the ambit of this article, considering that many people have the same name; however, if that name is combined with other information it narrows down the number of people, which could eventually lead to the identification of a particular person, giving rise to rights and obligations.

CTRL +C, CTRL +V can spell trouble by

February 2019 - TMT ( Technology, Media & Telecoms). Legal Developments by Gauci-Maistre Xynou.

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Forget generation gap issues in our ‘Copy & Paste’ habits. Unless you don’t use a computer, copying and pasting is part of our keyboarding lives – especially when it comes to downloading images/video clips to finish off a presentation, blog/vlog post or website update. Precious time is spent scrolling down myriad visuals until ‘the one’ appears. With a Cheshire smile and a gleeful blurting of ‘YES!’ we click away without batting an eyelid.

The good news is that our search is over. The bad news is that the days of worry-free Ctrl +C, Ctrl +V are over too.

Blockchain – the backbone of tomorrow’s digital ports by

February 2019 - TMT ( Technology, Media & Telecoms). Legal Developments by Gauci-Maistre Xynou.

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Picture the scene. An autonomous truck fully loaded with goods leaving the warehouse and arriving without a hitch at its destination almost 200 km away.

The stuff of a millennial James Bond movie? The latest commercial going viral? No, this is October 2016 when a self-driving semi-trailer heaped with Budweiser wheeled its way across the 1-25 from Fort Collins, Colorado through Denver to Colorado Springs. Surely a few beers must have high fived to celebrate the world’s first driverless commercial shipment.