Language(s) before the UPC Belgian Local Division
This morning, on 30 May 2023, Belgium’s declaration regarding the language(s) of the proceedings before the Belgian Local Division was published in the Belgian State Gazette. We have inserted a link at the end of this blog to the relevant page of the Belgian State Gazette. Here are the key take-aways.
1. Firstly, four languages are available to conduct proceedings before the Belgian Local Division: Dutch, French, German and English.
2. Secondly, if the defendant has its domicile or headquarters in Belgium, and if proceedings cannot be introduced before any other Local or Regional Division, then the region of the defendant’s domicile or headquarters will determine the language of the proceedings before the Belgian Local Division:
- If the defendant has its domicile or headquarters in a region with one official language, then that language will be the language of the proceedings.
- If the defendant has its domicile or headquarters in a region with multiple official languages, then the defendant can choose between one of those languages.
However, if there are multiple defendants having their domicile or headquarters (i) in regions with different official languages, and/or (ii) in regions with multiple official languages, then the claimant can choose between one of those languages.
3. Thirdly and finally, the judge-rapporteur may order, in the interests of the panel, that the judges may use Dutch, French or German in the oral proceedings and/or that the Court may make any order and deliver any decision in Dutch, French or German together with a certified translation for enforcement purposes.
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