Global Perspectives

Fiduciary Rule Delayed By 60 Days

On April 4, 2017, less than a week before the scheduled applicability date, the Department of Labor (the “DOL”) announced a 60-day extension of its fiduciary guidance published April 8, 2016: the revised definition of a fiduciary under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (“ERISA”) (the “Fiduciary Rule”), the new Best Interest Contract Exemption (“BIC Exemption”), and Principal Transactions Exemption and revisions to PTE 84-24, PTE 86-128, and other previously granted exemptions affected by the Fiduciary Rule.

The UK Supreme Court: Reintroducing ‘flexibility’ or ‘uncertainty’ into the interpretation of aggregation clauses?

The UK Supreme Court has handed down its decision in AIG Europe Limited v Woodman and others [2017] UKSC 18. In doing so, the Supreme Court reversed the decision of the Court of Appeal.

It found, broadly, for the insurer (AIG) in its interpretation of the meaning of the words “a series of related matters or transactions” in the relevant aggregation clause, but in practice this should not mean that policyholders should fear the worst.

While this dispute concerns a clause in a solicitors’ professional indemnity policy (the Policy), it has wider implications for other liability insurance contracts.


The New UAE Bankruptcy Law

The current law regarding insolvency in the UAE is not a comprehensive regime, and the present framework is found across three different laws (mainly in the Commercial Companies Law, as well as the Commercial Transactions Law and the Civil Code). Additionally, companies faced harsh penalties in a bankruptcy scenario, and individuals could also face criminal sanctions and penal sentences. In the wake of low oil prices since 2015, and more companies facing distress, a new bankruptcy law drawing from international best practice will come into force in the UAE, from the beginning of 2017.

With the implementation of Federal Law No. 9 of 2016 (the ‘Bankruptcy Law’), the UAE government seeks to create a robust legal insolvency framework within which all businesses can operate and parties can be sufficiently protected. The Bankruptcy Law was promulgated by decree by His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan on 20 September 2016 and published in the Official Gazette on 29 September 2016. The framework under the Bankruptcy Law is based on “Chapter 11” bankruptcy legislation in the United States, and the bankruptcy practices in other countries.

Please note that any references below to articles in the Bankruptcy Law are to the articles as set out in the English translation of the Bankruptcy Law.


Singapore revamps company laws to address transparency, compliance costs and restructuring

In a move widely seen as an attempt to further enhance Singapore’s status as a business-friendly destination, Parliament recently passed the Companies (Amendment) Bill 2017, ushering in a swathe of company law reforms. In this alert we take a look at the provisions in the Companies (Amendment) Act 2017 (the “Act”) and assess the extent to which they will achieve Parliament’s objectives.

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Implementing the GDPR: What you need to know

Data protection procedures will require an overhaul for any company that offers goods and services, or tracks individuals, in the EU under the European General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) to take effect from 25 May 2018. Given the changes in compliance requirements that the GDPR entails, it is vital that you use 2017 to audit your current policies and processes and make any necessary changes in readiness for the GDPR.

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