Litigation

THINK STRATEGICALLY. ACT TACTICALLY. OPERATE EFFICIENTLY. ENFORCE THE LAW.

For further information about our LITIGATION practice Dr. Jochen Markgraf is at your disposal at any time.

 

Corporate Litigation

At the core of our corporate litigation practice are disputes under corporate law, including the enforcement and defence of claims in proceedings for injunctive relief.

In particular, the termination of corporate relationships is both an emotional and an economic extreme. Therefore, court representation in and out-of-court legal advice on shareholder disputes arising in this context requires an economic sense of proportion as well as a strategic focus. In this respect, we are able to rely on many years of experience in successfully providing advice in court and out-of-court representation, involving a variety of separation scenarios as well as actions brought by (minority) shareholders against various kinds of shareholders resolutions.

The enforcement and defence of liability claims in connection with corporate governance is another core aspect of our corporate litigation practice.

Due to our M&A focus, we are also well positioned to deal with transaction-related disputes and not only act as counsel in post M&A cases before civil courts and arbitration tribunals, but also act as arbitrators.

SELECTED MATTERS ON WHICH WE ADVISED

  • Advising a bank organised as a stock corporation in the context of a dispute with shareholders regarding the valuation of unlisted shares
  • Advising and litigating for a major charitable foundation in the separation of a joint venture
  • Legal advice and litigation for a major nationwide operating holding company in the real estate and property management sector
  • Legal advice and litigation for a special purpose company operating nationwide as a central regulator for construction goods
  • Legal advice and court representation of a special service provider and project agency in the field of gas exploration in the context of the disputed dissolution of a consortium
  • Conducting arbitration proceedings in connection with indemnification claims arising from a company purchase agreement
  • Acting as arbitrator, in particular in the context of post M&A disputes

INSOLVENCY FORENSICS

We regularly represent insolvency administrators in court disputes.

In this context, we benefit both from our many years of corporate law and insolvency law advisory practice, enabling us – in addition to standard issues of insolvency forensics, such as the enforcement of avoidance claims and liability for payments after the occurrence of an insolvency event – to also successfully enforce or defend claims from the areas of raising and maintaining capital or corporate liability of corporate bodies before courts and arbitration tribunals.

A further focus is on the court representation of major creditors, in particular banks, in the enforcement of their claims as well as the defence against avoidance claims in the insolvency of their debtors.

SELECTED MATTERS ON WHICH WE ADVISED

  • Representation of insolvency administrators acting on a national level in connection with the enforcement of various liability claims against former executives
  • Representation of insolvency administrators acting on a national level in the enforcement of avoidance claims
 

LITIGATION IN THE FIELD OF CAPITAL MARKETS LAW

The focus of our capital markets litigation is on the defence against claims for damages under capital markets law and advising on capital markets model case proceedings (KapMuG proceedings).

Although KapMuG proceedings were only introduced a few years ago, we have already developed a high level of expertise in this area as we have successfully represented our clients in various of these proceedings.

In addition, GLADE MICHEL WIRTZ also represents and advises clients in connection with BaFin investigations. The main focus of the matters we work on in this context is the defence against allegations of a breach of the Market Abuse Regulation (in particular, with regard to ad-hoc announcements, managers' transactions and the maintaining of insider lists).

SELECTED MATTERS ON WHICH WE ADVISED

  • Daimler AG in the defence of investor claims in connection with the withdrawal of Prof Dr Schrempp as Chairman of the Board of Management
  • IVG AG in the defence of investor claims in connection with various real estate funds
  • Representation of a DAX company in the defence of alleged violations of the ad-hoc disclosure obligation

Commercial Litigation

GLADE MICHEL WIRTZ regularly represents parties in court and arbitration disputes at the core of which are complex civil law issues.

The legal disputes that arise are as multi-faceted as the business world itself. In addition to the actual representation in court, which ranges from the enforcement and defence of claims in proceedings for injunctive relief to the implementation of enforcement measures, we also offer comprehensive advice in advance of a civil law dispute. This includes the reaching of an amicable solution as well as the (second) assessment of the chances of success of a legal dispute or an appeal to be lodged.

Selected matters on which we advised:

  • In-court representation of a leading European drugstore chain in a dispute with an organic food company
  • In-court representation of a national project developer in the context of a dispute concerning the operation of a central accommodation facility for refugees
  • Out-of-court enforcement of claims against a legal expense insurance in connection with a BaFin proceeding for breach of disclosure obligations

ARBITRATION

In many disputes, arbitration proceedings offer a genuine alternative to a dispute before the state courts. This is the case, in particular, if the dispute between the parties is to be kept strictly confidential.

In addition, arbitration proceedings can lead to a quick and legally binding decision, since appeals against an arbitral award can only be lodged to a limited extent.

Our firm regularly represents parties in arbitration proceedings, in particular those conducted in accordance with the arbitration rules of the German Institution of Arbitration (DIS). In addition, we also act as arbitrators and were involved in a large number of arbitral awards, particularly in post-M&A disputes.

 

LITIGATION IN THE FIELD OF ANTITRUST LAW

GLADE MICHEL WIRTZ represents its clients in civil antitrust law disputes.

This includes court and out-of-court representation in the assertion and defence of claims for cartel damages as well as in the context of the enforcement of rights against enterprises with a dominant market position, for example in connection with supply or access claims or in the enforcement of standard essential patents.

In the area of defending and asserting claims for cartel damages, we are engaged, for example, in the following cartel cases: "rail technology", "beer", "flour", "sausage", "drugstore articles", "sanitary articles" (all Federal Cartel Office), "plastic packaging", "air cargo" or "gas insulated switchgear" (European Commission).

Matters we work on in the context of dominant market positions concern not only the defence and assertion, for example, of supply or access claims, but also the support of licensing negotiations as well as arbitration or civil proceedings for the enforcement of standard essential patents. Our clients in this field include LG Electronics, ASUS Computer, Canon, Epson, Gilead, Medion, Samsung and Xerox.

 

ANTITRUST COMPLAINT & OBJECTION PROCEEDINGS

GLADE MICHEL WIRTZ is engaged in administrative and objection proceedings before the German and European courts in connection with appeals against decisions of the European Commission and the Federal Cartel Office. The issues dealt with in these proceedings include, for example, cartel fining decisions, merger control clearance or prohibition decisions as well as other administrative decisions, e.g. cease and desist orders.

For instance, for our client HDI-Gerling (Talanx AG) we were able to obtain the only acquittal in the industrial insurance antitrust case brought by the German Federal Cartel Office before the Federal Court of Justice against a number of Germany's largest insurance companies.

This judgement revealed a legal loophole in the field of liability for fines in the event of universal succession (landmark case "insurance merger"), which was addressed by the legislator in the Eighth and Ninth Amendment to the Act against Restraints of Competition.

SELECTED MATTERS ON WHICH WE ADVISED

  • Silver Plastics: Appeal before the European Court of Justice against a fining decision of the European Commission
  • Deutsche Telekom before the Düsseldorf Higher Regional Court (OLG) and the Federal Court of Justice against the clearance of the merger of Unitymedia and Kabel BW
  • IDW (Institut der Wirtschaftsprüfer in Deutschland e.V.) before the OLG Düsseldorf and the Federal Court of Justice on the landmark case "Hallo Gratiszeitung"
  • Large petroleum company before the OLG Düsseldorf with regard to the supply of Tank & Rast motorway filling stations