Library of Congress

Law Library of Congress

The Library of Congress > Law Library > News & Events > Global Legal Monitor

European Union: Commission Amends Authorization Mechanism for Exports of COVID-19 Vaccines

(Apr. 1, 2021) On March 26, 2021, the European Commission’s Implementing Regulation (EU) 2021/521, which amends the authorization mechanism for exports of COVID-19 vaccines adopted on January 30, 2021, entered into force. The regulation adds the principles of reciprocity and proportionality as new criteria to be considered when a European Union (EU) member state authorizes […]

Germany: Laptop Retailer Heavily Fined for Violating General Data Protection Regulation

(Mar. 22, 2021) On January 8, 2021, the data protection commissioner for the German state of Lower Saxony (Landesbeauftragte für den Datenschutz Niedersachsen, LfD Niedersachen) issued a press release announcing that the laptop retailer notebooksbilliger.de AG had been fined 10.4 million euros (about US$12.55 million) for violating the data protection rules of the General Data […]

European Union: Commission Proposes COVID-19 Digital Green Certificate on Vaccination, Testing, and Recovery

(Mar. 18, 2021) On March 17, 2021, the European Commission published a proposal for a regulation to create a framework for an interoperable “Digital Green Certificate” to prove that people have been vaccinated against COVID-19, received a negative COVID-19 test result, or recovered from COVID-19. The purpose of the certificates is to facilitate the exercise […]

Liechtenstein: European Court of Human Rights Rules Whistleblower’s Dismissal Did Not Infringe Freedom of Expression

(Mar. 17, 2021) On February 16, 2021, the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR) held in Gawlik v. Liechtenstein (application no. 23922/19) that the dismissal of a doctor without notice for reporting that his superior allegedly performed illegal euthanasia did not violate his right to freedom of expression under article 10 of the European Convention […]

Germany: All Residents Entitled to at Least One Free COVID-19 Rapid Test per Week

(Mar. 16, 2021) On March 8, 2021, a new Coronavirus Test Regulation (Coronavirus-Testverordnung, TestV) entered into force in Germany. The regulation introduces the right to “resident testing” (Bürgertestung), which entitles all asymptomatic people to at least one free COVID-19 rapid PoC antigen test per week. The number of free tests is subject to local availability. […]

Germany: Amendments to Adoption Law Enacted

(Mar. 16, 2021) On February 18, 2021, the Act to Improve Support to Families That Are Adopting (Adoption Support Act) was published in the German Federal Law Gazette. The Adoption Support Act aims to modernize adoption law and improve adoption placement procedures to safeguard the best interests of the child. In particular, questions of open […]

Germany: Bavarian High Administrative Court Rules on COVID-19 Testing Requirement in Nursing Homes

(Mar. 10, 2021) On March 2, 2021, the High Administrative Court of Bavaria (Bayerischer Verwaltungsgerichtshof, BayVGH), the supreme court for administrative jurisdiction in Bavaria, published its rulings in two preliminary injunction cases challenging the COVID-19 testing guidelines in nursing homes. It struck down the requirement that nursing home staff be tested three times a week […]

Germany: Higher Regional Court Rules Agreement between Google and German Ministry of Health on “Knowledge Panels” Violates Competition Law

(Mar. 4, 2021) On February 10, the Higher Regional Court Munich I (Landgericht München I, LG München I) granted two applications for preliminary injunctions against the German Ministry of Health (Bundesministerium für Gesundheit, BMG) and Google Ireland, Ltd. (Google) requested by NetDoktor.de GmbH (NetDoktor). The court held that the agreement between the BMG and Google […]

Switzerland: New Amending Law Adapts Several Acts to Developments in Distributed Ledger Technology

(Mar. 3, 2021) On February 1, 2021, some parts of the Act to Adapt Federal Law to Developments in Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT Act) (Bundesgesetz zur Anpassung des Bundesrechts an Entwicklungen der Technik verteilter elektronischer Register), an omnibus bill, entered into force. (DLT Act at 21.) The amendments to several civil and financial market laws […]

Germany: Lightweight Plastic Bag Ban to Take Effect January 1, 2022

(Feb. 25, 2021) On February 9, 2021, the First Act to Amend the Packaging Act entered into force in Germany. The amendment bans the distribution of lightweight plastic bags at the point of sale of goods or products starting January 1, 2022. Lightweight plastic bags are those with a wall thickness below 50 microns. Very […]