E-newsletter  -  December 2018

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Soulier's team wishes you an excellent Year 2019.

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Corporate Law
PACTE Bill: A framework for ICOs and protection of foreign investments in France

Chems Idrissi

The Bill on business growth and transformation, known as the “PACTE Bill” in French, aims at eliminating barriers to business growth through the diversification of financing modes while protecting companies that conduct so-called “strategic” activities. The wide range of contemplated measures includes the creation of a clear legal regime governing initial coin offerings (“ICOs”) and the improvement and strengthening of sanctions in case of non-compliance with the rules applicable to foreign investments in France.

The PACTE Bill was adopted at first reading by the National Assembly on October 9, 2018 and will be discussed by the Senate in January 2019.

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Labor & Employment
Reclassification of the contract between a delivery rider and a digital platform: A strong message sent by the Cour de Cassation

Sara Bellahouel

In an eagerly awaited judgment handed down on November 28, 2018 that will be undoubtedly become a landmark decision, the Labor Chamber of the Cour de Cassation (French Supreme Court) ruled for the first time on the legal classification of the agreement between a delivery rider and a digital platform.

While the majority of the lower courts asked to adjudicate similar cases were reluctant to recognize the existence of an employment relationship, the Labor Chamber curbs such reluctance and bites the bullet: Yes, it is possible to reclassify such agreement as an employment contract if it follows from the factual conditions in which the professional activity is carried out that the existence of a subordination link can be established.

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Civil Procedure
In a chain of contracts transferring ownership, the arbitration clause is automatically transferred

Flore Foyatier

In order to deny the jurisdiction of the Commercial Court of Saint-Malo before which proceedings had been initiated against one of our clients, a Swedish company, the Court of Appeals of Rennes, with which we filed a jurisdictional objection, ruled that an arbitration clause was enforceable against our opponent event though it had not signed said clause.

In a judgment dated September 11, 2018, the Court of Appeals of Rennes thus applied the so-called competence-competence principle and recalled that in a chain of contracts transferring ownership, the arbitration agreement is automatically transferred as an accessory to the right of action.

This judgment has not been appealed against within the prescribed timeline and it has now become final and irrevocable.

This case provides the opportunity to review the two aforementioned principles which are very protective of arbitration clauses.  

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Business Law
Trade Secrets: Publication of Decree n°2018-1126 of December 11, 2018 clarifying procedural aspects

Anaëlle Idjeri

Decree n°2018-1126 of December 11, 2018 on the protection of trade secrets adopted in furtherance of Law n°2018-670 of July 30, 2018 was published in the Official Journal of the French Republic on December 13, 2018.

This eagerly awaited Decree further details the procedural aspects related to the protection of trade secrets and offers innovative and pragmatic solutions to maintain a balance between the various interests at stake throughout the procedure.

The vast majority of the provisions set forth in the Decree entered into force on December 14, 2018.

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“Contributor With Most Popular Article In France” Award

We are pleased to announce that Catherine Nommick has received the “Contributor With Most Popular Article In France” award from Mondaq, one of the largest global online advisory content suppliers, for her article entitled “New reforms aimed at simplifying the internal operation of companies” published in November 2018.

Every month, Mondaq analyses its usage logs and identifies which contributors and which articles were most accessed for that calendar month.

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