Do we need a law of corporate groups?

  • „Corporate groups are a fact of life“.1 This was the starting point for a group of renowned European experts to deliver a report on a possible Directive on corporate group law in 2000.2 We all know that no such Directive has been issued.3 However, these days a fresh group of eminent experts has started, among other things, to develop an initiative „on groups of companies“.4 One reason for a European regulation to take its time might be the enormous national differences in dealing with group situations. While some countries, notably the UK,5 rely on general company law to deal with corporate groups, others provide most detailed rules specifically for groups of companies.6 German law provides an example for the latter. Do we need a law of corporate groups? Most countries regulate one or another aspect of group law.7 This is probably most common for tax and for accounting law. Insolvency law will often take group situations into account and the same is true for labour law. Regulatory oversight for financial institutions or insurance companies usually includes a group dimension. Competition law necessarily does so as well. However, in what follows when we speak about „group law“ we will focus on regulation more specifically tuned to genuine questions of company law such as the protection of minority shareholders or creditors, the standards for managerial behavior and the „enabling“ function of legal structures.

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Author:Katja LangenbucherORCiDGND
Parent Title (German):Working paper series / Johann-Wolfgang-Goethe-Universität, Institute for Law and Finance ; 147
Series (Serial Number):Working paper / Johann-Wolfgang-Goethe-Universität, Institut for Law and Finance (147)
Publisher:Institute for Law and Finance
Place of publication:Frankfurt am Main
Document Type:Working Paper
Date of Publication (online):2016/11/30
Year of first Publication:2016
Publishing Institution:Universitätsbibliothek Johann Christian Senckenberg
Release Date:2016/12/02
Page Number:24
Institutes:Wirtschaftswissenschaften / Wirtschaftswissenschaften
Wissenschaftliche Zentren und koordinierte Programme / Institute for Law and Finance (ILF)
Dewey Decimal Classification:3 Sozialwissenschaften / 33 Wirtschaft / 330 Wirtschaft
Licence (German):License LogoDeutsches Urheberrecht