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Since early 2024, Hungarian legislative efforts have brought about several updates to consumer protection regulations. Ranging from novelties in consumer complaints and related processes, increased consumer protections fines, expanded rights of the consumer protection and competition authority to an unexpected obligation imposed on e-commerce providers to include the local postal delivery provider as a delivery option, changes to the sector have been diverse.

Schoenherr has advised Switzerland-based MET Group subsidiary Oberon Solar Park on its acquisition of 52 hectares of land in Kaba, eastern Hungary. Sole practitioner Zsolt Gaal reportedly advised an undisclosed agricultural entrepreneur on the sale.

The governmental decree published on 22 February (No. 33/2024 (II. 22.)) sets forth the establishment of a new project company to manage the provision of inpatient pharmaceuticals in all public hospitals, as well as those private hospitals that choose to join the initiative. The Decree is a follow up to the amendments in the Medicines Thrift Act (Act XCVIII of 2006) from July 2023, which stipulated the basic conditions for a “unified institutional pharmacy service” for public hospitals. The project company shall be operational from January 2025.

New technologies, spearheaded by artificial intelligence, are shaping the legal dialogue surrounding innovation, consumer protection, and the integrity of market competition within Hungary and the European Union as a whole according to KCG Partners Founding Partner Rita Parkanyi.

Herbst Kinsky, working with Orrick, has advised the Terreal Group and its main shareholders on the antitrust aspects of the full sale of its businesses in Poland, Hungary, and Austria to Swisspor. Schoenherr advised Swisspor Holding on the acquisition.

In The Debrief, our Practice Leaders across CEE share updates on recent and upcoming legislation, consider the impact of recent court decisions, showcase landmark projects, and keep our readers apprised of the latest developments impacting their respective practice areas.

In The Corner Office, we ask Managing Partners at law firms across Central and Eastern Europe about their backgrounds, strategies, and responsibilities. As we bid farewell to 2023, this time around we turn our attention forward: What is your one main wish for 2024 and what do you see as the biggest potential risk?

In our Looking In series, we talk to Partners from outside CEE who are keeping an eye on the region (and often pop up in our deal ticker) to learn how they perceive CEE markets and their evolution. For this issue, we sat down with Slaughter and May Partners Jonathan Marks and Richard Jones.

If someone is unable to pay their outstanding and due debts (or is just partly able to do so), that person is considered insolvent. This applies to companies and to natural persons as well. The number of companies that had to cease operations because of insolvency increased in 2023. Although the Hungarian legal environment provides several solutions to this problem, these have different effectiveness and have different consequences for both debtors and creditors. Below is a general overview of the four typical procedures for dealing with insolvency in the current Hungarian law.

Today, more and more companies are trying to convince consumers with the pretence of a sustainable future and environmental awareness. However, in many cases, there is no real responsibility behind such marketing activities, which are simply intended as an effective advertising ploy to make green claims.

The Hungarian Parliament adopted the bill on Hungarian architecture on 12 December 2023, and the Hungarian Architecture Act was officially published 10 days later. The date of entry into force is different for certain sections of the Act, namely 30 December 2023, 1 October 2024, 1 January 2026 and finally 1 July 2027.

Due to the holiday season and the legislative dumping at the end of the year, the important new milestone in the ESG field did not receive much publicity, even though Act CVIII of 2023, the ESG Act, which is the first comprehensive Hungarian regulation in the field, entered into force as of January 1, 2024. The field, which until now has mostly been covered by EU sources of law and in one Hungarian law, has finally ceased to be a stepchild and has been given the first comprehensive and unified law, which the legislator himself named the ESG Act.

Under Hungarian law, conciliation boards were set up more than two decades ago, which provide a fast, efficient and inexpensive forum for dispute resolution compared to litigation in specific cases. The competence of the conciliation boards in relation to goods and services covers (i) the quality and safety of the services; (ii) application of product liability rules; and (iii) conclusion and performance of contracts. This type of conciliation can only be initiated by the consumer as an individual.

Hungary Knowledge Partner

Nagy és Trócsányi was founded in 1991, turned into limited professional partnership (in Hungarian: ügyvédi iroda) in 1992, with the aim of offering sophisticated legal services. The firm continues to seek excellence in a comprehensive and modern practice, which spans international commercial and business law. 

The firm’s lawyers provide clients with advice and representation in an active, thoughtful and ethical manner, with a real understanding of clients‘ business needs and the markets in which they operate.

The firm is one of the largest home-grown independent law firms in Hungary. Currently Nagy és Trócsányi has 26 lawyers out of which there are 8 active partners. All partners are equity partners.

Nagy és Trócsányi is a legal entity and registered with the Budapest Bar Association. All lawyers of the Budapest office are either members of, or registered as clerks with, the Budapest Bar Association. Several of the firm’s lawyers are admitted attorneys or registered as legal consultants in New York.

The firm advises a broad range of clients, including numerous multinational corporations. 

Our activity focuses on the following practice areas: M&A, company law, litigation and dispute resolution, real estate law, banking and finance, project financing, insolvency and restructuring, venture capital investment, taxation, competition, utilities, energy, media and telecommunication.

Nagy és Trócsányi is the exclusive member firm in Hungary for Lex Mundi – the world’s leading network of independent law firms with in-depth experience in 100+countries worldwide.

The firm advises a broad range of clients, including numerous multinational corporations. Among our key clients are: OTP Bank, Sberbank, Erste Bank, Scania, KS ORKA, Mannvit, DAF Trucks, Booking.com, Museum of Fine Arts of Budapest, Hungarian Post Pte Ltd, Hiventures, Strabag, CPI Hungary, Givaudan, Marks & Spencer, CBA.

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