Our German automotive lawyers have many years of experience representing both publicly and privately held automobile dealers and local, regional, and nationwide dealer groups. We understand the complex inner workings of the automotive industry. Based on our experience across multiple manufacturer lines, we offer reliable counsel on risk avoidance and legal defence when litigation arises.
At Schlun & Elseven Rechtsanwälte, our full-service approach allows us to provide comprehensive assistance and insightful advice across the broad spectrum of legal areas in Germany. Our legal team can be reached through our contact details at the bottom of this article.
The Importance of the Automotive Industry in Germany
The German automotive industry is one of the largest employers, boasting a labour force of more than 900,000 people. Outside of the automotive chain itself, having a good affiliation with sectors like steel and derivatives, machinery and equipment, electronic materials and more; are also crucial for any investment in the automotive industries.
Schlun & Elseven Rechtsanwälte consists of a team of lawyers with experience and knowledge across a wide field of legal areas in Germany. From our offices in Cologne, Düsseldorf and Aachen and conference rooms across Germany, your business can benefit from full legal service from one source. Our practise group for the German automotive industry is composed of professionals with in-depth knowledge of the regulations and the needs and opportunities of the industry. Our team is familiar with the concepts and terminology of the industry and highly qualified to serve customers at all points of the vehicle production chain, from the manufacture of parts to automakers, carriers, dealers and sales. Contact us today to start a productive legal partnership.
Compliance and Whistleblowing
Ensuring that your company has the necessary internal mechanisms for grievances is crucial. Without secure, effective, confidential and appropriate systems, employees who discover issues within the company can be forced to go public. This whistleblowing can often cause significant reputational damage and loss of revenue. Whistleblowing is becoming more important and prevalent in uncovering corruption and poor standards within companies. Whistleblowers have hit even market leaders in recent years.
For those considering whistleblowing, it is also essential to consult with expert legal advice. Whistleblowers need to know their legal rights and responsibilities before going public. At Schlun & Elseven Rechtsanwälte, our lawyers advise both companies and whistleblowers regarding their options under German law.
Corporate Law Concerns and the Automotive Industry
The automotive industry is ever-changing as new technological developments and new regulations are set to significantly impact how businesses operate. With moves toward electric vehicles and other hybrid models planned, it is more important than ever for your business to stay ahead of the competition and maintain its legal protections. At Schlun & Elseven Rechtsanwälte, we advise experienced companies within the area and new companies looking to establish themselves. Our corporate lawyers advise on:
- Business structures and organisation,
- Competition law and how to avoid antitrust practices,
- Corporate restructuring.
- Compliance measures,
- Environmental law and regulations,
- Strategic partnerships for your company,
- The rights and responsibilities of managing directors.
The above listed are just some areas where our corporate lawyers advise; contact us directly for further advice.
Drafting and Reviewing Contracts & Commercial Activities
The automotive industry consists of many different partners, between equipment manufacturers, supply chains and distributors. Not surprisingly, the need for lawyers with a keen understanding of contracts and commercial agreements is crucial for success. Our commercial lawyers can be relied upon for all matters concerning commercial contracts, such as supply contracts, distribution agreements, and software and technology contracts.
Where disputes arise regarding the supply chain or distribution, our lawyers are seasoned negotiators who will aim to ensure that your concerns are prioritised. Should cases reach the courts, you can rely on us to provide comprehensive representation.
To prevent allegations of breaches of contract or disputes over licences, a contract lawyer is necessary. Our contract lawyers thoroughly analyse contracts when drafting and reviewing them on behalf of our clients. Furthermore, we will be by your side if your company requires legal representation to enforce contractual obligations.
Employment Law and the Automotive Industry
With so many people employed in the automotive industry, it is essential for companies involved to have practices and procedures in place to avoid legal disputes from arising. Our certified specialists in employment law, Dr. Thomas Bichat and Mr. Jens Schmidt, advise corporate groups on measures to reduce the likelihood of employment law disputes.
Our legal team assists companies in designing anti-bullying and harassment measures, implementing mechanisms by which employees can complain and overseeing of training of managers and supervisors to ensure that they are compliant with their legal expectations.
On the manufacturing side of the automotive industry, companies must have suitable safety measures in place to reduce the likelihood of accidents. Companies that allow dangerous working conditions and companies that fail to implement safety measures leave themselves wide-open to legal action. Our lawyers advise private individuals on their options when considering legal action against their employer on these matters.
Intellectual Property Law: Trademarks, Patents and Copyright
Standing out in the automotive industry can be achieved through your intellectual property. If your company develops a reputation for reliability and high-performance it is crucial to ensure that your copyrights, trademarks and other forms of intellectual property are kept protected. For those in the industry looking to get ahead by means of creativity and cutting-edge technology, it is critical to have dependable advice regarding what can be patented.
Our lawyers advise all forms of companies, including start-ups and more traditional businesses, as to their rights under intellectual property law. Not protecting your creativity by applying copyrights or patents where applicable can leave your company vulnerable to competitors and may result in your company not benefiting from its ideas and vision. The automotive industry remains at the forefront of technological advances and with the right legal partner, your company’s ideas can be hugely profitable.
Litigation, Arbitration and Dispute Resolution
When looking to resolve disputes in Germany, it is crucial to have legal assistance. Our lawyers will where possible and where it is in our clients’ interests, look to resolve such matters outside of court through arbitration means. Arbitration procedures tend to be more cost-efficient, time-saving and allow companies to avoid damaging negative publicity. Our lawyers can oversee your preparations for such arbitration measures as our industry-specific knowledge will be applied in such disputes.
However, some cases do end up in court and need to be resolved in that manner. Our lawyers are very familiar with the courts in Germany and in litigation, they are ready to represent your company. From disputes over supply chain issues to shareholder litigation, our lawyers will be by your side. Furthermore, our team is ready to provide their considered legal opinions in the case of disputes or legal questions. Contact us now if your company finds itself involved in litigation or if you are looking to bring a lawsuit in Germany.