A pragmatic approach using scientific methods: the difference between winning and losing.

We advise and litigate in areas of EU law that are of great importance to authorities as well as companies, such as competition law, state aid law and the law regulating the free movement of goods, persons, services and capital. We also specialise in domestic competition law and the Dutch Public Enterprises (Market Activities) Act [Wet markt en overheid]. Our national and international clients include medium-sized and large companies, public authorities, public-law institutions, foundations and associations. We assist them in litigation before domestic courts and the Court of Justice of the European Union.

We combine a pragmatic approach with a scientific way of working, providing solution-focused advice when a problem rears its head. However, we prefer to be ahead of the game by providing advice on how to prevent problems in the first place. Our experts regularly publish in legal journals, write annotations to judgments and closely monitor relevant developments, legal and otherwise. Many write blogs on their areas of expertise, which can be found under 'Insights' on this site. The interaction between science and the legal practice affords us a better understanding and mastery of law, and valuable insights as to how this benefits the case we are handling for you, which can make the difference between winning and losing that case.

Competition law
Competition law seeks to ensure effective competition between companies and therefore prohibits certain practices by companies or associations of companies that restrict competition. The European Commission supervises conduct by companies that affect trade between EU Member States. In the Netherlands, the Authority for Consumers and Markets keeps an eye out for practices that restrict competition.

Both watchdogs have the authority to impose hefty fines on companies breaching competition law. For this reason, companies should take due note of the applicable rules of competition law when devising their strategies or entering into contracts. AKD has the expertise to advise you on the prohibition of cartel practices and the prohibition of abuse of a dominant position. We help you navigate merger controls before the competition authorities and have been involved in civil compensation claims for losses suffered on account of breaches of the laws regulating competition.

Click here to read more about the various facets of competition law.

Digital Markets Act
On 1 November 2022, the Digital Markets Act (“DMA”) entered into effect. The DMA identifies certain large online platforms - such as providers of online social network services or search engines - as "gatekeepers". These gatekeepers must comply with obligations established under the rules of the DMA. Such obligations include the prohibition against bundling data or self-preferencing, or a requirement to be transparent or facilitate interoperability. Rather than detracting from current competition rules, the DMA complements them.

More on the background to and functioning of the DMA can be read in this blog (in Dutch).

Freedom of movement
The internal market of the EU is based on a set of principles, one being that companies should experience as little hinder from national measures as possible when engaging in cross-border trade. Even though EU Member States have some degree of freedom in establishing restrictions on trade justified by the public interest, such restrictions must meet the criteria of proportionality and subsidiarity.

If your company is (disproportionately) affected by such government measures, feel free to reach out to us so we can defend your rights.

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