The Brussels office of McKenna Long & Aldridge LLP (MLA) was opened in 1990, and features a diverse group of lawyers from multiple countries, who counsel clients on a wide-range of EU regulatory and business law matters.
In particular, Brussels lawyers are leaders in important legal practice areas such as:
- EU Environmental Law (including REACH);
- EU Product Regulation;
- EU Financial Regulatory Practice;
- European Trade Law and Policy;
- Corporate, Bank Lending, Structured Finance and Transactional Law Practice; and
- EU Antitrust and Competition.
MLA’s Brussels lawyers are leading authorities on REACH, the EU’s comprehensive chemical regulation. In its 2011 edition, Legal 500 recommends MLA’s REACH practice and notes that the team "…has ‘good business acumen and industry knowledge’ with Brussels Office Managing Partner, Ursula Schliessner delivering ‘very good advice in a short time’. The team manages seven REACH consortia and provides legal services to another twelve."
We provide a broad spectrum of REACH-related advice and services to our clients, including:
- Counseling on REACH implementation and compliance issues;
- Representation in SIEFs/consortia;
- Consortium management;
- Competition law compliance issues of consortia; and
- Representing clients before European institutions (e.g: European Commission, European Chemicals Agency, etc.).
MLA has created an on-line tool for issuance of REACH letters of access for its consortia and other clients. To access this page, please visit http://www.mlalaw.eu/.
EU Product Regulatory Law Practice
In the area of EU product regulatory law, our practice includes the fields of chemicals, biocides, nanomaterials, cosmetics, food, pharmaceuticals, electronic products, textiles, industrial minerals, and medical devices; including related business and antitrust issues that arise when drafting and negotiating commercial agreements or setting up task forces.
The Brussels office has substantial experience in product authorization, product labeling, setting product compliance schemes and manuals across the EU, its member states and beyond, and also regularly assist on product recall questions and liability considerations.
We can lobby EU and member state institutions on clients’ behalf before legislation is adopted and can defend clients before the EU and various member state courts.
Industry Sector EU Regulatory Engagements
Our lawyers also advise clients in other fields of environmental, health and safety, workers safety, and consumer protection law, including: water and air pollution control; permitting; waste management, shipment and disposal; packaging and packaging waste; biotechnology; worker health and safety; ecological labeling; environmental auditing requirements/due diligence reviews in connection with the purchase and sale of companies in the EU; car and battery recovery schemes; toys; personal protective equipment; medical devices; sporting goods; and pharmaceuticals.
Our Brussels office is supplemented by technical support from European-based members of our consulting firm, TSG Europe (TSGE). TSGE assists clients in developing chemical (REACH, biocides, pesticides) and food contact registration dossiers and risk assessments.
EU Financial Regulatory Practice
Our EU Financial Services team advises on regulated and alternative investment funds, as well as EU investment services with a strong focus on clearing and settlement, banking, insurance and re-insurance laws. We have extensive experience in derivatives transactions and securities lending. Our lawyers were heavily involved in the governmental bail-out operations of the credit institutions in the EU Member States during the last financial crisis.
In particular, the Brussels office (and the firm generally) has a focused Payments Practice group, with extensive experience in working with financial service and payment industry clients, including advising with respect to the Single Euro Payments Area initiative (SEPA), the Payment Services Directive (PSD), and Card Schemes/Card Associations such as Visa, MasterCard, American Express, and Diners Club.
Corporate, Bank Lending, Structured Finance and Transactional Law Practice
The Corporate and Transactional law practice of the Brussels office focuses on the general corporate representation of both public and privately held companies, concentrating principally on cross-border mergers, acquisitions, joint ventures and strategic alliances.
We specialize in complex, international acquisition transactions that often are coupled with a long term strategic relationship among the parties. Our Brussels lawyers have served as lead counsel in numerous acquisitions and joint ventures/strategic alliances throughout Europe and North America (including: Belgium, Canada, Germany, Iceland, Ireland, Mexico, Norway, Poland, Spain, the United Kingdom, and the U.S.). In this role, our lawyers coordinate the efficient and timely input of local counsel in all affected jurisdictions, relying upon well-established working relationships with correspondent law firms in other member states (and elsewhere).
As a subset of the above, the Brussels office regularly advises and represents companies wishing to conduct business or expand operations — whether through acquisitions, alliances, or organically — on a cross-border basis, with an emphasis on Europe.
Our Finance team has a wealth of experience in assisting international banks, companies and private equity clients in complex financing activities and corporate restructurings throughout Europe, the structuring and restructuring of financial transactions, securitization structures, collateral arrangements and public or private issue of financial instruments.
Members of our team are active participants in advising the European Parliament on the harmonization of insolvency law at EU level.
EU Antitrust and Competition
Our lawyers have in-depth experience in counseling clients from various industry sectors in the full range of competition law issues, including merger control, cartel investigations, other restrictive agreements and abusive conduct, and in related litigation. In addition to preventive advice and representation, our services include company-specific antitrust compliance programs. We handle more than just EU Competition law by providing a range of knowledge and skills across EU jurisdictions, so that clients’ European antitrust needs can be satisfied with a “one-stop shop” service in Brussels.
Our Brussels competition lawyers also work as an integrated team with other firm attorneys, who are leading practitioners in their respective fields, recognizing that interdisciplinary service is critical for a proper competition assessment. For instance, by drawing on the strong regulatory experience of our environmental practice, in particular concerning the EU REACH chemicals regulation, we are uniquely positioned in Europe to provide tailored-made antitrust advice to the chemical industry, including in the setting up and operation of REACH consortia, as well as biocides and pesticides task forces. Also, our specialized knowledge of the energy sector places us in a privileged position to offer advice and representation on complex energy-related competition issues.
European Trade Practice
The European Trade practice covers the full range of EU and international trade issues affecting both EU and non-EU businesses. Our lawyers have particular experience with:
- Export controls and sanctions (the EU’s Dual-use Regulation, individual Member State regulations, the UN and European economic and financial sanctions regime, and compliance with due process, etc.)
- Customs compliance (classification, valuation, preferential tariff regimes, rules of origin, binding tariff information, tariff suspensions, etc.
- Trade remedies (anti-dumping, anti-subsidy, and safeguard proceedings) and trade barriers in export markets
- Consistency and compliance of EU technical regulations and environmental legislation with international trade law
From Brussels Airport
- Head west
- Continue straight onto Leopoldlaan/A201
- Continue to follow A201
- Continue onto N22
- Turn left onto Bld Général Wahis/Generaal Wahislaan/R21
- Continue to follow R21
- Keep right at the fork
- At the roundabout, take the 1st exit onto Av. de Tervueren/Tervurenlaan
- Destination will be on the right
- Antitrust and Unfair Competition
- Chemicals, Pesticides and Product Regulation
- Climate, Energy and Sustainability
- New EU Biocidal Products Regulation 528/2012 coming into force in September 2013: Article 95 obligation will be applicable to all operators
- New EC Communication: Unleashing the Potential of Cloud Computing in Europe
- New Proposal for a Public Procurement Regulation: Establishing a level playing field for third country companies in the public procurement markets
- The General Court of the EU Upholds European Commission's Decision on MasterCard Fees
- The New Proposal for a Regulation on the Statute for a European Foundation: Towards Harmonizing the Regime for Foundations Operating Across the EU