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The most notable recent political event in the Czech Republic was the October 2020 regional election, says Jaroslav Havel, Managing Partner at Havel & Partners. However, Havel is quick to point out that, no matter who has been in office in the last ten years, politicians have not had a major impact on business in the Czech Republic. A more tangible effect of the election, he says, is that his former partner, Jan Holasek, who left the former Havel & Holasek law firm six years ago, has become a member of the Czech Senate.

A new regulation sets up a system for controlling investments from outside the EU in strategic assets relevant to the security and internal order of the Czech Republic. From 1 April 2021, certain foreign investments in Czech assets (including private) will thus be subject to prior approval by the Ministry of Industry and Trade. The ministry will also be entitled to review any foreign investment up to five years after its completion. The Act defines a wide variety of entries into the target as foreign investment (not only asset ownership but also, for example, membership of a body). There is no experience with investment approval procedures yet, but failure to notify can lead to enormous fines (up to 1% of turnover). Comprehensive preparation of the required documents and information and legal representation in negotiations with the Ministry of Industry and Trade are therefore highly recommended.

On 1 January 2021, the new Act No. 254/2019 Sb., on Experts, Expert Offices and Expert Institutes (the Act on Experts), entered into force, replacing Act No. 36/1967 Sb., on Experts and Interpreters. This is undoubtedly the most significant change in this area in the last 30 years. Below is a selection of the most important changes:

A fundamental change brought about with effect from 1 January 2021 by a major amendment to the Commercial Corporations Act was the long-awaited new setting of the monistic system of the joint stock company’s internal structure. We bring you an overview of the most significant changes and practical complications that arise in current practice.

Noerr has advised Bilfinger SE on the sale of Bilfinger Industrial Services Czech s.r.o., Bilfinger Euromont a.s., and Bilfinger Slovensko s.r.o to funds advised by Deutsche Invest Mittelstand, part of Deutsche Invest Capital Partners. Havel & Partners reportedly advised Deutsche Invest Mittelstand on the transaction.

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Havel & Partners at a Glance

HAVEL & PARTNERS, attorneys-at-law, with offices in Prague, Brno, Bratislava, Pilsen, Olomouc, and Ostrava, has a team of 220 lawyers, tax advisors and 500 employees in total, is the largest independent law firm in Central Europe.

Our clients include large international companies, leading Czech and Slovak firms, including strategic state-owned companies and public sector authorities, as well as medium-size businesses, individual entrepreneurs, and investors. We advise approximately 100 of the Fortune 500 companies, and almost 50 of the Czech Top 100 companies. HAVEL & PARTNERS currently provides its services to a total of 2,000 clients. We have the most comprehensive international support available to both Czech and Slovak law firms. We provide legal and tax advice in 12 world languages in more than 90 countries around the globe. Up to 70 % of the transactions we deal with involve an international aspect.

HAVEL & PARTNERS was named the best law firm operating in the Czech Republic by the prestigious British rating agencies Chambers and Partners (2020) and Who’s Who Legal (2018, 2019). It is also the most successful law firm, providing the most comprehensive legal services in the Czech Republic and Slovakia, based on the total number of all nominations and awards in all years of the Law Firm of the Year awards. The firm became the absolute winner of this competition four times in the last six years, receiving the main award Domestic Law Firm of the Year in the Czech Republic (2015, 2017, 2018, 2020) and ranking as one of the most recommended law firms in all categories of law. Our company is also a three-time winner of the Law Firm of the Year award for Best Client Services (2015, 2016, 2019). In the field of M&A, HAVEL & PARTNERS is the best law firm in the Czech Republic based on the annual International Advisory Experts awards (2018, 2019). In Slovakia, it also won the prestigious global M&A Today Awards (2013–2018) for Mergers & Acquisitions six times in a row, and repeatedly won first place in the ranking by Lawyer International Legal 100 (2017, 2018). Prestigious international rating agencies EMIS DealWatch and Mergermarket have ranked HAVEL & PARTNERS among the leading law firms by the number of transactions completed in the entire CEE region since 2009. Based on annual awards of the Acquisition International magazine, HAVEL & PARTNERS has become the Law Firm of the Year 2019 in the M&A category in the CEE region.

Firm's website: https://www.havelpartners.cz/en/