Protecting competition remains a top priority in Germany, Europe and around the globe. In recent years, we have witnessed a surge of legal enforcement activities in almost every industry and at every level of trade. The authorities have a wide range of powers to investigate suspected competition law infringements, and they do not shy away from imposing severe sanctions for failure to comply, including, in some areas, imprisonment and criminal fines. In addition, the private enforcement of competition law is gaining importance as we see a variety of measures to encourage private damages actions in Europe and elsewhere. Moreover, the number of countries with effective and sophisticated competition and antitrust rules is growing.
For businesses, this means that they are confronted with more stringent and, at times, inconsistent legal requirements, whilst all the time being under the increased scrutiny of regulators and private claimants. Effective guidance in addressing these challenges can mean the difference between capitalizing on a strategic opportunity and risking severe penalties.
Our lawyers offer advice on the full range of possible antitrust and competition law related issues, including:
We regularly advise clients on these issues in sectors as diverse as retailing, newspapers, telecommunications, IT technology, engineered industrial products, transport, pharmaceuticals, automobiles etc.
Our lawyers are able to serve the needs of small and medium sized enterprises as well as multinational corporations. Our Antitrust & Competition practice group consists of more than 60 experienced lawyers working in thirteen offices around the globe. In Europe, we have antitrust lawyers in Brussels, Düsseldorf, London, Milan and Paris, which are closely collaborating on a day-to-day basis. Our local teams are intimately familiar with both their national legal framework and the overarching European competition law regime. Our German team represents clients in proceedings before the German competition authority (Bundeskartellamt), the European Commission and before the German and European courts. We work regularly with these bodies, we understand how they operate and how best to approach them, where there is flexibility and where there is not.
Orrick's global reach allows us to provide clients with integrated, seamless representation to manage the risks posed by cross-border investigations. This capability has come into play in particular with regard to the coordination of multi-jurisdictional cartel investigations and merger filings.
In the area of compliance, we offer to conduct competition law audits and to train legal and commercial teams on achieving day-to-day compliance with competition law as well as anti-bribery, data protection and other regulations. For this purpose, we bring together tailor-made teams of lawyers from our various practice groups, including, besides Antitrust & Competition, e.g., Corporate and M&A, Employment, Intellectual Property, Tax etc.